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Map of America's Racial Segregation (wired.com)
299 points by Aqua_Geek on Aug 26, 2013 | hide | past | web | favorite | 182 comments



I watched once a lecture on Coursera about Schelling's model of segregation, which I found extremely insightful.

If you see maps like that with strong segregation, one of the first attempts to explain it is "racism". However, if you divide your neighborhood in 9 blocks such that you are in the center, you have 8 neighbors.

Schelling's model now shows that even in cities where most people say:"I'd like to live next to only 35-40% of people who are similar to me (whatever that means exactly, could be ethnical background, skin color, income, ...) and I'd accept 60% of neighbors who are different from me", you would still get a segregation of 80-90% in the city.

So, the reason for strong segregation is not necessarily that people are racists. People can be very tolerant, but if you try to fulfill the minimum requirement (40% like me), you end up with strong segregation patterns just because there's no other way to fulfill the minimum requirement for most people.

Note: Numbers aren't exact, but pretty close.

Edit: Link to lecture: https://class.coursera.org/modelthinking-003/lecture/16


Yes, this is a "map of America's racial distribution". Calling it a "map of America's racial segregation" means someone is pushing a political agenda. Calling it a map of racial integration would be just as accurate but probably didn't support the right narrative.

As a map of distribution, you would expect significant clustering from randomness alone. We've all seen the "which of these dot patterns is actually the random one?" tests, where few people guess the correct answer: the one with all the clusters.

If you take that clustered map as a seed, then add any affinities, you get positive feedback, increasing the clustering. Those affinities don't have to be racial selection but can just be in the general form of, "I make decisions based on what I hear, and I hear more from people I know than from people I don't know."

So, you hear from your cousin that there is a new apartment building opening across the street from him. You hear from several members of your church that X is the best school district. A factory in your town closes and the laid off employees discuss their options and decide to go check out a company in the next town that is hiring (with lots of reasonably-priced apartments nearby).

Just getting more information from people you know than people you don't know could be sufficient for Schelling's model, but add to that the tendency to get more information from people from your background (whether you actually know them or not), because it's likely to be more relevant to you, and you magnify the effect significantly. An urban liberal and his soccer-loving Mexican gardener don't have to dislike each other for the former to read more NY Times and the latter to watch more Univision, and the information about where the opportunities are as presented in those two media outlets are not the same.

This doesn't mean that there is no race-based component in deciding where to live. It just means that, as the Schelling model demonstrates, you can't tell how much there is by looking at how much clustering there is on a map.


>Yes, this is a "map of America's racial distribution". Calling it a "map of America's racial segregation" means someone is pushing a political agenda.

isn't racial segregation is a very significantly skewed racial distribution?

>This doesn't mean that there is no race-based component in deciding where to live. It just means that, as the Schelling model demonstrates, you can't tell how much there is by looking at how much clustering there is on a map.

you very well described why race may be not a direct (or a reliably traceable at all) cause of observed segregation. And i'd agree that claiming strong causation here would require more strong arguments than just a map which to me clearly shows correlation.


The English language word "segregation" means something like "a multi-modal spacial distribution".

But the most common (and very well understood by anyone educated here) use of that word is to describe the regime of laws in the US south designed to prevent racial interraction and preserve white priviledge.

Basically: it means something very similar to "apartheid", which is another word that probably had a neutral meaning once but now can only mean one thing.


yes, segregation-by-law doesn't exist anymore in the USA (personal preferences of police officers in LA aside), yet there is a phenomenon of poor black and hispanic kids in Oakland going to school which is predominantly attended only by other poor black and hispanic kids. Segregation-by-de-facto-conditions-of-life?


Segregation in common English, at least to my ears, implies some degree of malicious intent. We don't have laws that do this anymore, but there are other possibilities such as racist real estate agents, or the 'strategic' placement of highways between neighborhoods (see Chicago, from what I understand).

Your usage is technically correct, but I think it carries an implication that is not necessarily supported.


I dunno -- there's a lot of talk of self-segregation in the last decade or two. I think that gets lumped in with general segregation in this day and age (certainly it didn't 50 years ago), and I don't think that form of segregation implies any malicious intent.


> So, you hear from your cousin that there is a new apartment building opening across the street from him

That's the thing,in a truly color-blind society your cousin could be "black" while you could be "white", but this seems not to be the default setting in the States.

If it matters I have "light" skin (after my father) while my brother has "brown" skin (after my mother). I hadn't notice that until recently when my brother visited me (I live in an Eastern European capital city) and there were a couple of people in the tram who looked at me, and at us, differently compared to when I was just by myself. I only realized the probable reasons (my brother has the skin-color of a "gipsy") later on.


Reminds me of a similar thing in developmental biology, where if you have two populations of cells, each having a slighly higher affinity for other cells of its own type, then they will very efficiently sort themselves into separate compartments. This is thought to be a pretty important mechanism in the formation and maintenance of structures in the body.

In case anyone's interested, here is a nice (if now rather old, although to be honest scientific writing was so much better back in the '90s) review on the whole business:

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0092867400...

In which we find a paragraph describing this process:

"The selector genes do more than specify the pattern and the structures that the compartments will eventually make—they also specify, indirectly, a surface property. This property has been termed cell affinity, meaning that cells that share the same affinity, owing to the same binary code of selector genes, will intermingle during growth. There are a number of different experiments that lead to this conclusion, but perhaps the simplest is the observation that when the selector gene engrailed is removed, in vivo, from a posterior clone of cells in the wing, those cells gain anterior affinity: they now sort out from posterior cells and, if they are in contact with anterior cells, will sort into and mingle with them. Cells from neighboring compartments will have different affinities and tend to minimize their mutual contact, so that where the two compartments abut, there is a relatively straight line across which the cells do not stray."


Is true in physics as well. That's how stars are formed... Gravity is extremely weak, and so the affinity for one atom and another is extremely small, but after millions of years they still cluster together so hard sparks fly.


Why do you say that scientific writing was better in the '90s? I'm just curious, not challenging your claim.


Back when i used to read a lot of papers, i found that i enjoyed the ones from the 90s more. I think the further you go back in time, the more honest and open scientists were in their writing; as time has gone on and academia has become more crowded and competitive, the more papers read like marketing. Authors writing in the 80s would happily admit that there were things they didn't know or hadn't proven; to do that now would be a sign of weakness.

I remember a paper from the 80s, the first one reporting the localisation of some cytoskeletal protein, vinculin or talin or something, where the authors present a set of microscope images showing that the protein is found exclusively at the ends of stress fibres (the main structural members of many kinds of cell). Great finding! And then they show a picture of a cell where it isn't, and is instead assembled into lots of little rings. The caption says that they have no idea what kind of cell it is, or why it's doing that. I just can't imagine that happening today.

In this case, this is a review paper, so that doesn't directly apply. But i think the ethos still pervades the writing; the authors are writing to explain what's known, not to advance some hypothesis or demonstrate how much they know.


I saw that lecture also. Wish I'd had more time to go further with the Modeling class, it was really cool.

Anyway, the equally interesting alternative to what you explained is what happens when everybody actually is super racist. If every person's requirement is that they refuse to live near anyone that is different, then you actually get a weird pattern where things are as mixed as they could be. The neighborhoods never stabilize, because there's always going to be border areas where each group can't help living next to a different group.

Actually, it just occurred to me that the model might not be accurate at that point, though, because people can't always move away like the model implies. Instead of people moving around chaotically, I wonder if the real result is violence intended to force the others to move.

EDIT: changed 'counterpoint' to 'alternative'



Any chance you have a direct link to the lecture without having to register for a course?



> (40% like me)

yeah... you know, the definition of racism is when you even take those categories as a differentiation attribute in people. So, it's racism after all.

If you'd say singles vs big families. rich vs poor. etc. it would be personal preference. The things you listed, racism.


If that's racism, then it is a lot less virulent of a thing than we normally think of. Almost everybody in the world has some sort of affinity for their own cultural group, practices and norms. Maybe we should develop another term for active inter-racial hatred?


But it's still racism :)

you are thinking of hate-crime.


> I'd accept 60% of neighbors who are different from me

How is that not racism? Why do you care if your neighbor is a different race than you? Isn't it more relevant whether they're someone you'd enjoy living near?


Here is the actual map, which you can zoom into, scroll, pan, explore your neighborhood, etc. -- http://demographics.coopercenter.org/DotMap/index.html

EDIT: Exploring, I see the island I live on -- Manhattan -- has the four main dot colors well represented, though mainly in blocks. The main mixing is between whites and Asians and between blacks and Hispanics. Notably parts of the Upper West Side, East Village/Lower East Side, and Midtown west show significantly more mixing, at least by eye -- it would be interesting to quantify the data.

Some parts of Queens and Brooklyn show mixing of all four dot colors within the same city block.

Still, on the whole most dot colors remain in blocks with less mixing on the edges. Some dot colors rarely mix with other dot colors.

EDIT TWO: How they made the map is here -- http://www.coopercenter.org/demographics/Racial-Dot-Map -- which describes the data sources and links to the code on Github.


The actual map is an amazing piece of work, but let's give credit where credit is due!

Bill Rankin posted maps in this exact visual style back in 2009. You can see them (and many other amazing maps he's done) at his blog -- http://www.radicalcartography.net/index.html?chicagodots

Eric Fischer picked up Bill's project and ran with it, composing maps for most of the major US cities with census 2010 data. You can see them all on his Flickr page -- http://www.flickr.com/photos/walkingsf/sets/7215762481267496....

I love great maps, but it's a little disheartening that these precursor projects aren't mentioned anywhere in the article/comments.


Thank you. I saw this article and had a feeling of "Hmm, where have I seen this before? The URL says 2013, but this is definitely old..." I think it must have Eric's flickr.

(Link somehow got truncated; it should be http://www.flickr.com/photos/walkingsf/sets/7215762481267496... )


The website mentions extracting "308,745,538 observations" (21 GB in size) and transforming it to some custom CSV files, for processing via Java. I don't see any of the Java code on GitHub.

...he mentions use of a summary file, "SF1", and there's some kind of PDF here:

--> http://www.census.gov/prod/www/decennial.html#y2010tecdoc

--> http://www.census.gov/prod/cen2010/doc/sf1.pdf

It's more or less, a user manual for roughly 300 other tables, but where are they? Is the actual census data itself available freely, in detail?

I think this is it:

--> http://www2.census.gov/census_2010/04-Summary_File_1/

New York, as an example:

--> http://www2.census.gov/census_2010/04-Summary_File_1/New_Yor...

--> http://www2.census.gov/census_2010/04-Summary_File_1/New_Yor...

Is this the original, actual source data?


I have some admittedly old Python code to work with Census data here: https://github.com/peterlandry/django-census

The small talk I gave introducing python geeks to census data is here: http://files.meetup.com/3119472/census%20data%20for%20python...


Very fascinating. I wish you could link to specific map views. I'd love to send direct links to different areas.


I'm glad the code is available. I'd like to see this visualization applied to previous census data, so that we can visually compare two points in time (or more). So, say:

* the 2000 census data

* the 1990 census data

* the 1980 census data

... and so on. If this can be visualized, and then maybe animated, that would provide some insightful results.


Paging http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hans_Rosling, paging Hans Rosling. Animated visualization of statistical data required, please respond ...


Notice how there is often a latino or Asian neighborhood between the white and african american neighborhoods.

I'd like to see figures on racial division in the labor market. When I lived in NYC I couldn't help noticing how I would rarely see white people working in stores, on the streets or driving cabs (and if they were white they would be immigrants). Diners were mostly staffed with Greek people, except the guys who poured water and cleaned up after you - they would be latino. White New Yorkers mainly work in offices. Waiters in restaurants or bars are often white as well.


Interestingly, in the D.C. area, you'll see large areas to the West (Virginia) with Asian/Hispanic mixes, large areas to the East (Maryland) of all racially Black areas, and North (Maryland) non-mixed densely packed blocks nearby for all races.

In the Western areas, there are very large Korean and Latin mixed population areas, so much so that most Korean restaurants are owned by Koreans, but all the cooks and staff are Latin American and the staff speaks Spanish and a little Korean, but no English and the owners are the reverse. In some ways, it's a little like K-Town in LA, known as "Korea town" but with large Hispanic minority groups mixed in. Also the home of the "Bulgogi Taco".

It's a very unexpected integration that somehow works pretty well.


The Map is really cool. I wish you could zoom in more. It's hard to find my actual block on manhattan.


Neighborhoods doesn't tell the whole story in New York because we have a subway. We are integrated at the breating space level on a daily basis.


Riding the subway means that as a white New Yorker, you will twice a day share a room with a black person. Whether you interact with them is another story - I'd venture that most people never say a word to anyone in the subway. To understand (likelihood of) interaction, neighborhood maps are one piece of the story, as would be (as mentioned elsewhere in the thread) workplace data.


I hardly talk to my neighbors too. I do most talking with my friends and coworkers.


But you are also likely to live in the same neighborhood as your friends. So while living in a racially diverse neighborhood may not cause you to interact with people of other other races, it may be indicative if your group of friends is racially diverse.


Is segregation really the appropriate word here? Separation of the races is coded into our genes and happens naturally without any malicious intent too. It's not much different from the fact that all of us prefer to surround ourselves with people who are similar to ourselves, usually in terms of thinking, hobbies, and interests. Physical attributes influence us as well, whether it's bikers and leather jackets or punks and black spiked clothes. In evolutionary biology this is referred to as "kinship".

Not to say that racism isn't worth fighting against, but the more free our societies become the more people on average will follow their natural instincts. A non-racial example of this is Norway, which is likely the most gender equal country in the world, but has also extremely skewed gender distributions in professions such as engineering and nursing; with almost only men in engineering, and women in nursing, despite massive attempts to balance the situation. This could be easily misinterpreted and claimed as evidence that Norway does not respect gender equality, but in fact it's more likely evidence of the opposite! People in Norway are more free to pursue what makes them happy.

When we use terms like "segregation" for cases where it might actually be just "separation", we risk causing unnecessary hatred and overblown illusions of racism - misleading us from what actually matters: freedom and equality.


"Separation of the races is coded into our genes" What? How so?

"Physical attributes influence us as well" But which physical attributes matter and which don't is cultural. I'm tall. I don't only or even mostly hang around other tall people. I'm left handed. I don't hang out with left handed people.

"but has also extremely skewed gender distributions in professions such as engineering and nursing; with almost only men in engineering, and women in nursing, despite massive attempts to balance the situation. This could be easily misinterpreted and claimed as evidence that Norway does not respect gender equality, but in fact it's more likely evidence of the opposite! People in Norway are more free to pursue what makes them happy."

Or gender stereotypes which predated attempts at gender equality still persist and encourage people to think that certain jobs will make them happier than others even though this may not be true.


Can you point to sources that answer any of these questions:

* What mechanism does this racial separation take?

* What sort of evidence shows that skin color or other ethnic identifiers in genetics are the thing that causes tribal separation vs them just serving as a simple proxy to more complicated factors?

* What explanations of exigent factors are there... for example why are there black and hispanic republicans, or white members of traditionally "black gangs". How do these less common (but not rare) group membership issues override the claimed genetic selection?

* What genetic factors explain the fracturing of groups within groups of seemingly genetically similar (at least on a racial/ethinc level) people?

The claim made here doesn't actually answer any of those questions - I'm not sure the validity of "separation of races is coded in our genes" makes sense given the scenarios highlighted in my questions.


Why bother with research when everything can be explained by the natural tendencies of the blood? Research just perpetuates racism by allowing for the possibility that it may exist.


I don't understand your comment, can you expand?


>What mechanism does this racial separation take?

It's not racial separation. It's all attraction in general. Like attracts like. Hackers tend to like other hackers.

Race is simply one factor that affects us. Being aware of this can help you avoid racism. If you don't recognize that your brain tends to prefer people who are similar to you, you're more likely to accidentally discriminate others.

>What sort of evidence shows that skin color or other ethnic identifiers in genetics are the thing that causes tribal separation vs them just serving as a simple proxy to more complicated factors?

The real extent of its significance is impossible to say, but based on these maps, it's obvious that such separation happens. The lack of any legislation in the US that requires people of certain race to segregate means that it has to be caused by other factors.

>What explanations of exigent factors are there... for example why are there black and hispanic republicans, or white members of traditionally "black gangs". How do these less common (but not rare) group membership issues override the claimed genetic selection?

The fact that there are black republicans is only evidence that race does not limit people into any certain categories.

>What genetic factors explain the fracturing of groups within groups of seemingly genetically similar (at least on a racial/ethinc level) people?

Why do brothers and sisters fight? Even if you're from the same family, you're not immune to conflict. Inarguably, family members are on average closer to each other than non-family members. I really doubt race is such a significant factor that it would make us immune to conflict. If you really get down to it, we're all basically identical and we still fight all the time. That's the real stupidity.

If you want to learn more, you can start with evolutionary psychology. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evolutionary_psychology

We really don't know understand ourselves that well yet, but it's obvious that we discriminate each other. It's important to understand why, so we can become better.


>It's all attraction in general. Like attracts like. Hackers tend to like other hackers.

What study did you find backing this? Actually, I have already read and heard the contrary, for exemple here is what one of the numerous articles on this subject[0] says:

>Heterosexual men and women with dissimilar genes are more likely to get married than people with a similar genetic heritage.

So it seems, on the contrary, that people genetically tend to want to live with people different from them. Except when they have a psychological aversion to them, in which case I believe we call that "xenophobia", which is usually synonym with "racism".

[0] http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/the-secret-to-find...


Unless it's the norm for people to cross-reference the races of all their potential neighbors before deciding on a house, I'm gonna go out on a limb here and suggest that the issue is a little more complicated than who sits with who at lunch.

A much more likely factor is your socioeconomic status (which is, granted, also related to your career), and race/class are not at all proportional in the US.

> People in Norway are more free to pursue what makes _them_ happy.

And why does engineering make men happy but women not? Put another way: are there women who are being made _unhappy_ with engineering? And vice versa for nursing? Is that not worth speculating upon and addressing, rather than taking for granted that the penis is the part of the brain responsible for enjoying math?


Thomas Schelling [0] has shown that even if your most preferred neighborhood is a perfect mix of races, it is a dynamically unstable equilibrium (assuming that if the balance tips one way or the other, you prefer it to tip towards your own race). That is, segregated neighborhoods are not necessarily a sign that people prefer segregation -- it is also a natural outcome when people want to live in a mixed neighborhood. There are many interesting simulations of the phenomenon. [1]

[0] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_Schelling [1] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A_XtboyO8jc&noredirect=1


Do people pick their dwelling by racial mix? I would expect this to be much more of a function of income and means.


Obviously you can't pay more than your means, but the housing market has people bidding against one another for products that differ in dozens of different dimensions.

Me, maybe I'm willing to pay more for my favorite architectural style and off-road parking for my motorbike. Maybe you're starting a family, you'll pay more to live in an area with a quality public school, and a park where you can walk your dog. Another person might pay a premium for a safer neighborhood with lower crime rates and more local shops.

We all take our preferences, decide what we're willing to pay, and you outbid me because I wasn't willing to pay any premium for that public school (or whatever).


Apparently you have never tried to "rent while black."


Can you expound upon that? What exactly happens?


Here is an article on the subject: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/06/12/business/economy/discrimin...

> In one test, a white customer looking for a two-bedroom apartment was shown a two-bedroom and a one-bedroom and given applications for both, while a Hispanic customer who arrived two hours later was told that nothing was available. In another, a real estate agent refused to meet with a black tester who was not prequalified for a loan, while a white tester was given an appointment without being asked if she had prequalified.


Here's an implementation of Schelling's model:

http://ccl.northwestern.edu/netlogo/models/Segregation


I feel like you would get a similar result if you did a map of Paris or other big european cities, I'm not sure it's an american thing. I think over here we just don't like/can't compile that kind of racial data.

I would be more interested in counter-examples: cities were the melting pot is the rule.


The overriding trend in American cities is that whites will not live in predominantly black or hispanic neighborhoods.[1] But the reverse is generally not true. So you see much less segregation in predominantly white cities like Portland than in cities like Chicago that have an even mix of races, which have less segregation than predominantly black cities like Detroit or New Orleans.

As far as I can tell, most European cities are predominantly white, so I wouldn't expect as much segregation in those cities as you see in say Chicago or Detroit or Philadelphia. London is one of the more ethnically diverse (large) Western European cities, and is roughly 60% white. LA is the whitest large American city at 50%. New York is 45%, Chicago is 30%, etc. New Orleans is around 25% white, and Detroit is 8% white. At the other end of the scale, Portland is 75% white. If you look at the map, the ordering by level of segregation follows that pattern: Portland is the least segregated, Detroit is the most segregated, and LA, New York, Chicago, and New Orleans are between, in that order.

[1] You can argue about whether this is racism or classism. As a practical matter, in American cities the two are tightly linked. Middle class people of both races tend to move to the suburbs, and of the people that are left, whites skew wealthier and blacks and hispanics skew poorer, even more so than in the general population. E.g. The median income of a white Chicagoan in 2009 was $64k (substantially above the national average). The median income of a black Chicagoan in 2009 was $29k (substantially below the national average). http://www.chicagonow.com/chicago-muckrakers/2011/02/second-....


As far as I can tell, most European cities are predominantly white

This is both true, and yet misleading and hence false.

Yes, by US racial/ethnic definitions the majority of european cities are majority 'white'. But we don't use the US categories (of white/black/latino/etc.) here in EU because it's not accurate. In fact EU law claims "The European Union rejects theories which attempt to determine the existence of separate human races."[1], and anti-racism law talks about "racial or ethnic origins"[1]

Let's take the UK and their main point of ethnic conflict, Belfast in Northern Ireland. Both the "nationalist/catholic" and "unionist/protestant" communities would be counted as "white" under US racial terminology, but they are 2 different ethnicies.

So yes, "most EU cities are white" by US standards, but by EU standards there's a lot of racial/ethnic mixing and conflict, including full on wars (look at what happened in Yugoslavia!)

[1] EU law on discrimination http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=CELEX:...


>In fact EU law claims "The European Union rejects theories which attempt to determine the existence of separate human races."[1], and anti-racism law talks about "racial or ethnic origins"[1]

Very clever. "We'll deal with the subject by pretending it doesn't exist!"


Oh they don't pretend it doesn't exist. The link is, effectively an EU anti-racism law. It's just that it's not based on biological race, but on "racial or ethnic origin".


Official racial identification in America is based on self-identification. The data from these maps came from people filling out a form saying what race they are. On modern census forms, people are allowed to choose multiple races, and the same holds for ethnic origin.

Some of the comments here seem to suggest that these maps come from measuring craniums and all that.

Fortunately that's one horror that didn't survive the boat trip across the ocean.


Fortunately that's one horror that didn't survive the boat trip across the ocean.

Actaully, Phrenology enjoyed brief but widespread popularity in the US: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phrenology#United_States


Oh, it did survice the boat trip (see e.g. paper bag parties). It only died overseas, not during transit, if at all.


Self-identification is mostly the way it's done in Europe as well.


I can see ethnic origin not being biological, but how can racial origin and biological race be different things?


It's "(racial or ethnic) origin", not "(racial origin) or (ethnic origin)".


You realize both phrases evaluate in exactly the same way?


Not sure if my homeland Northern Ireland is good example for defining ethnicity. I've rarely heard anyone talk about our "two communities" as ethnic groups, and even your own descriptions are political (Unionist/Nationalist) and religious (Protestant/Catholic). Ethnicity is not a clearly defined term and in a "post-conflict" place like Northern Ireland, I think we intentionally avoid terminology which can encourage a sense of division. It also suffers from the same deficiency as the word "race" when it comes to mixing. Even if we can say that this community predominantly came from English and Scottish settlers and this community predominantly came from "native" Irish, how many people today can say that they only have ancestors from one of those two?


Ethnicity is not a clearly defined term

Oh I know. There is lots of disagreements about if subset of humanity X or Y counts as a different ethnicity (Irish Travellers are view as a separate ethnicity in UK, but not Ireland for example). However the existance of disagreements, nor a clear definition doesn't mean the word is useless.


That's certainly a fair point, but would you say that there are axes of diversity in European cities that have properties similar to racial delineations in the U.S.? That is to say, political tensions arising from economic disparity as well as strong cohesion within distinct social groups?

I don't have an encyclopedic knowledge of European social conflict, but I don't imagine there is a lot of catholic versus protestant tension in say London, nor do I imagine there are persistent and massive socioeconomic disparities between the two groups in London (or at least nothing comparable to the more than factor of 2x disparity between blacks and whites I cited for Chicago).

And running with your example, what do you imagine would have been the political situation in the U.K. if say London had consisted of 60-70% Irish nationalist Catholics in 1985?

Or is there still discrimination within categories of whites? Are Londoners whose families originally hail from say Poland still dramatically disadvantaged compared to ones who can trace their origins in England for centuries? And if so, what would the politics be in the U.K. if London consisted of 60-70% of these hypothetical disadvantaged poles?


And running with your example, what do you imagine would have been the political situation in the U.K. if say London had consisted of 60-70% Irish nationalist Catholics in 1985?

Well Ireland was 95% Catholic, and had a terrorist guerilla war and seceeded from the UK in 1922. This often happens in Europe when there are ethnic disagrements (latest example: Kosovo). Or there's policial independence movements (e.g. Catalonia, Scotland).

Or is there still discrimination within categories of whites?

With regard to Polish people, there has been a lot of Polish migration to UK in the last few years since Poland fully joined the EU. So there'd be loads of "white Polish" families who moved there in the last 10 years. Not exactly comparable. There would be racism against ethnic Polish people. The UK does have a large Indian and Pakistani population, some third generation by now. And yes there can be racism against them. I suppose a pedant would claim the US racial definitions are still relevant by claiming things are different, but social and legally racism against Polish people, and Pakistani people would be seen as quite similar, not different types of discrimination. "They took our jobs" would a common type of discrimination in the UK against "white" migrants from Eastern & Central Europe. Racism between, what in the USA would be considered, "whites" does happen in Europe.


What's the magnitude of the discrimination within categories of whites? Do white British make twice as much as white ethnic Polish? Do white British barely ever associate with white ethnic Polish in private gatherings? Do white British cross the street when passing by a white ethnic Polish at night? Are their schools that are 90% white polish?

Do the info pages for individual schools in London prominently display "country of origin" information, so white British can ensure they don't accidentally send their kids to a school that's 90% white ethnic Polish? http://www.cps.edu/Schools/Pages/school.aspx?SchoolId=609951.

Or are Poles in London seen like say Jews in the U.S.? Sometimes the butt of a mean joke or nasty comment, but otherwise not situated fundamentally different from the majority group?


Eek, that seems pretty racist. Though in Northern Ireland they do separate the schools (they've been trying to stop that), and there is quotas for public jobs (though mostly because they had a long history of having a quota of 0 for one side).

Remember, Europe and the USA are different and have had different histories. Europe has had a slightly different history of racial discrimination than USA. The have literally been wars.


In London, the Lee Rigby murder and the flash mob violence has brought tensions between English and immigrants to the headlines.


> You can argue about whether this is racism or classism.

Or it could just be avoiding high-crime areas. Given the vastly different propensities of people of various races to commit crime, avoiding crime tends to make you look racist[1]

[1] http://www.ronunz.org/2013/07/20/race-and-crime-in-america/


You can still argue your assertion further: you seem to be declaring that race (and not class) is the driver for crime. Race and class (in America) are strongly linked that when a person declares one thing (and not the other) as the cause, it tells you a lot about the person.


It looks to me like race matters more than class. Poor whites and hispanics don't commit nearly as much crime as black citizens, even though they are numerically greater. 6% of the US population (black males) commits 53% of the murder, more than the other 94% of the population combined.

There is something uniquely wrong in the black American community. Whites who notice it are called "racist". Blacks who notice it (like Bill Cosby) are called race-traitors or Uncle Toms. So nobody much cares about addressing anti-social behavior, because it simply cannot be discussed.


Here's a map of the UK displaying areas' most popular surnames: http://www.uncertaintyofidentity.com/GB_Names/Mapping.aspx

It's Smith and Jones almost everywhere, but in cities like London and Birmingham there are distinct groupings of Patel, Kaur, Begum etc.


> As far as I can tell, most European cities are predominantly white

I think your impression is flawed. Many European cities are racially diverse and quite a few are segregated. Paris comes to mind as a particularly good example of both.


A city can be racially diverse and also predominantly white. London, for example, is a metropolitan, racially diverse city that is nonetheless 60% white.

I'm not denying that there are European cities that are racially diverse. But every single U.S. city over a million people, and most of the cities between 500,000 and 1 million, are majority-minority, usually by a large margin (say 2:1). I think that's a phenomenon that's alien to major European cities.

As an aside, I think Europeans unfairly jump to calling Americans racist, when they don't have to deal with the political dynamics of majority-minority cities. It's one thing for a city to be diverse. It's another thing when the dominant ethnic group of a country ends up being a minority in the city, in the process losing political control, etc. Add to that the layer of economic conflict that arises from tax revenues flowing from the richer majority to pay for municipal services for the poorer majority. That creates a wholly different political dynamic, one that is alien to Europeans.

Look at Paris. There is tremendous tension there between whites and Arabs. But the Muslim population of Paris is only 10-15% (estimated). What would the political dynamic in France be like if Paris were 60-70% Muslim and hadn't elected a non-Muslim mayor in 40 years, yet still relied on whites for most of the tax revenue? I would hazard a guess that the French would handle it a lot worse than the Americans have been doing in similar situations...


There is a lot of reality in this post that many people will never see/ understand - these phenomena that take place in cities across the US.

Also, the city population is only a part of the equation. Often the metro area skews significantly white (because of the suburbs) - which then stresses the balance more.


Some findings from the European Minorities and Discrimination Survey:

(The results present the first EU-wide comparable data on selected ethnic minorities and immigrants’ experiences of discrimination and criminal victimisation, including experiences of policing)

• On average, every second Roma and 4 in 10 Sub Saharan African interviewees was discriminated against on the basis of their ethnicity at least once in the last 12 months.

• 82% of those who were discriminated against on the basis of their ethnicity/immigrant background in the last 12 months did not report their last experience of discrimination anywhere – either at the place where it occurred or to a complaints body.

• On average, 1 in 5 Sub-Saharan African and Roma respondents were victims of what they considered to be‘racially motivated’assault or threat, or serious harassment, at least once in the last 12 months.

• Depending on the groups surveyed,between 57%and 74% of incidents of assault or threat were not reported to the police.

• Of those who were stopped by the police in the last 12 months, on average 17% of North Africans and 14%of Roma considered that they were stopped specifically because of their ethnic or immigrant background.

Source:

http://fra.europa.eu/en/press-release/2010/first-ever-eu-wid...

http://fra.europa.eu/sites/default/files/fra_uploads/664-eum... [ PDF ]

Edit: Formatting


Honolulu would count in my opinion, which is partially because I would break out "Asian" into at least Japanese, Chinese, Filipino, and other Asian. Even without that breakdown Honolulu doesn't have any majority (although Asian is really close at 46%). And 19.93% of people with two or more races (compared to 4.7% for SF and 3.9% for Boston)

Map: http://i.imgur.com/Z0X8Prs.jpg

A little hard to see from the map but although Asian is obviously predominant, the other races are sprinkled throughout besides for a few exceptions: a rich area in the bottom right and a few military bases/housing which have much higher white/black and very little asian.

Demographics: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Honolulu_County,_Hawaii#Demogra...


Making race maps in Europe would get you shot, your family hanged and all your friends deemed social outcasts forever.

For example: the Swedish crime prevention board (BRÅ) no longer publish crime statistics containing ethnic background information. They stopped a few years ago (2006) when the PC media found out that africans and arabs were way, way over-represented in all crime categories.

This is due to political correctness - something that the US seems to have been spared from. So far.


Steve Sailer found out that American schools are really good when you break down test scores by race[1]. For example, the white American population does better on international tests than most European populations, American hispanics do better than all Latin American countries, and etc. Unfortunately, the original article is not available because VDARE is having a fundraiser[2], but why not drop a dollar to keep Steve in business?

Since then, US government has stopped publishing PISA test scores by race. It's embarrassing for people on all sides of the aisle, including right-wing school reform movements that need the purported terribleness of American schools for their political momentum.

[1] http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_4ify7vDXrDs/TRFeGl7ocuI/AAAAAAAAGz...

[2] http://www.vdare.com/articles/pisa-scores-show-demography-is...


You can go too far from reality with political correctness but you can go just as far in the other direction with the "lack" of political correctness.

The US has a much higher tolerance for what in Europe would be considered pretty blatant racism.

I think that Political Correctness for the most part says we should treat everyone equally whether we like them or not which is the rational approach as I'm sure there are groups that don't like me (I'm a white middle class hard-line atheist so that probably gets me on a few lists right there).

I'd sooner live in a country with "political correctness gone mad" (a frequently cry of the right wing press here) than one where it hasn't.

We have politicians here condemning the Human Rights act because it makes them guarantee the rights for everyone even people "the majority don't like" which is exactly as it should be since the people "the majority don't like" can change so rapidly.

Of course in America you have been spared the political correctness gone mad but you are still executing mentally retarded people in some states so maybe you could do with the political correctness going a bit "mad".

“You can judge a society by how well it treats its prisoners”. - Dostoevsky


Perhaps you and I have a different idea on what "Political Correctness" actually is.

My view is that many mistake Scientifically Correct from Politically Correct. It is Scientifically Correct to say that there is very little difference, genetically, between Europeans, Asians, Africans, Latin Americans, etc. It also happens to be Politically Correct. However, it is also Scientifically Correct to say that there are huge disparities in victim reported violent crime rates between Europeans, Asians, Africans, and Latin Americans. However, this is not Politically Correct. This is an example of where a problem is identified, but unable to be discussed in the public sphere. If a problem can't be discussed, it can't be solved.

An African-American male is over 7 times more likely to murder a person than a Hispanic or European-American male. He is also over 6 times more likely to be the victim of a murder. This is elementary statistics based on data collected by the FBI. If this problem (which in my opinion is cultural rather than this phony construct called "racial") can't be discussed in an honest fashion due to political organizations which will threaten politicians with boycotts/villification/etc due to their refusal to acknowledge inconvenient truths, then the problem will simply continue. Not talking about it makes the problem become uglier, because non-Black Americans in general have internalized the fact that poor Black neighborhoods are vastly more violent and dangerous. Any realtor can tell you this. They deal with people's ACTUAL prejudices every day, rather than the Politically Correct, aspirational notions of the desire to live in a diverse neighborhood.

I say this as a white guy who grew up in various poor parts of the south, and spent large parts of my childhood with mostly black friends in mostly black neighborhoods. Political Correctness prevents us from collectively helping the predominantly black victims of a large sub-culture of black America that celebrates crime, dehumanizes women and gays, views educational/career achievement as betrayal of black identity, and tolerate men who willingly abandon their families.

America will not succeed as a nation unless black Americans succeed, and political correctness throws them to the wolves by pretending a problem they are victimized by doesn't exist.


* This is elementary statistics based on data collected by the FBI. If this problem [..] can't be discussed in an honest fashion due to political organizations which will threaten politicians with boycotts/villification/etc due to their refusal to acknowledge inconvenient truths, then the problem will simply continue.*

These statistics are discussed in an honest fashion, from Saturday mornings in the barber shop to academic works. The problem isn't discussion, the problem is that too many folks don't realize "blacks are overrepresented in crime" is not the same as "most blacks commit crimes" and use those statistics to justify policies like "stop and frisk" and "it's okay to follow a black kid a night because he's wearing a hoodie."

Political Correctness prevents us from collectively helping the predominantly black victims of a large sub-culture of black America that celebrates crime, dehumanizes women and gays, views educational/career achievement as betrayal of black identity, and tolerate men who willingly abandon their families.

This sentence would be equally true without the word "black." Political correctness indeed.


"This sentence would be equally true without the word "black." Political correctness indeed."

Sorry, but the phenomenon of being accused of betraying your cultural identity by peers if you succeed in school and get a job is mainly a phenomenon found in a sub-culture of black America. Anyone who has been immersed in an African-American community for any length of time can tell you this. The typical insult among school-children is "acting white" or "Oreo" and it is widespread enough to warrant heavy discussion within the mainstream black community. My best friend growing up was harassed and bullied constantly in this way. It was a particularly vicious kind of bullying that I've never seen Asian, Hispanic or white children ever have to deal with.


is mainly a phenomenon found in a sub-culture of black America.

You only have to watch prime-time television to know that phenomenon is common amongst many demographics.

Anyone who has been immersed in an African-American community for any length of time can tell you this.

I'm black. I went to an upper-class mostly-white private school, and there was some pressure to "fail" but it came from both whites and blacks. One the other hand, my peers who went to the local inner city high schools found extremely supportive environments, so much so that I really regret that my parents sent me to the private school.

The typical insult among school-children is "acting white" or "Oreo"

It might be "typical" yet I never heard anyone say it out loud IRL. However terms like "nerd," "geek," "dweeb" etc were common occurrences IME. And it wasn't coming from black kids.

it is widespread enough to warrant heavy discussion within the mainstream black community.

Heavy discussion is not academic rigor. It's been studied by a lot of people (not just Ogbu) and as might be expected, the results are complicated. Quoting from an older post of mine:

Tyson et al found that reduced academic achievement was generally for a variety of reasons ("fear of not doing well academically" being the biggest) and not "acting white": http://www.tc.columbia.edu/students/see/events/Darity_et_al_...

Cook and Ludwig as well found that "acting white" was not much of a factor in academic perforamnce: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/%28SICI%291520-66...

I had quoted from two other papers by Erika White and Roland Fryer (who is a proponent of the "acting white" hypothesis but had to adjust his definition to show any trends) but those links are dead now.


I'm black.

Holy shit, sir. I salute your patience and compassion as you dealt with this self-appointed expert on race relations. Your capacity for longsuffering is legendary, and if you are ever in the Bay Area, please contact me.

Seriously.

I would buy you a keg of beer.


That's a bit much, don't you think? FWIW, I'm also black and I agree with JPKab more than I do with Anechoic probably because his experiences (second-hand or otherwise) are closer to mine. Where does that get us?

They both make valid points, likely because they're coming at the issue from different directions. Listen to them both and balance your viewpoint but try to be a bit less snarky.


Another minority that is fucked over in this regard is Native Americans. You can ask anyone who grew up on a reservation - there's very little support for academics because it's seen as betraying your culture and colluding with the white man at the expense of their own culture. As a result, Native Americans, especially those who grow up on reservations, suffer from disproportionate rates of poverty.


Mayor Bloomberg claims that stop and frisk is biased against white people[1], compared to the percent of crime they commit.

The black criminal subculture is unique in America. There is no equivalence in other groups. Black males between the age of 14 and 24 make up 1% of the population and commit 27% of all murders. It's shocking and astonishing, and well above what you would predict would be the effect of poverty alone[2].

1 in 3 black American males will serve a jail sentence.

[1] http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/whites_subjected_to_too_m...

[2] http://takimag.com/article/guns_and_race_steve_sailer/print


This post is a perfect example of what I'm talking about.


Once you get down to the raw statistics they are shocking and very little known. The orthodox explanation for the disparity (white racism) doesn't fit the data and existing policy is to ignore and excuse the social problems rather than trying to fix them.


There's enough of a genetic difference between subpopulations that if you spit in a cup and ship it to 23andMe, they can tell you where your ancestors came from. Also, there's enough of a difference so that if your ancestors aren't from West Africa, you'll never win an Olympic medal in sprinting[1].

FWIW, people that study population genetics sound shockingly racist. Science is science, whether or not we want it to be.

[1] http://m.theatlantic.com/entertainment/archive/2013/08/the-u...


as a white male who grew up in the south, thank you for writing this intelligently and highlighting these issues.

its not a race problem, its a cultural problem.

Political Correctness prevents us from collectively helping the predominantly black victims of a large sub-culture of black America that celebrates crime, dehumanizes women and gays, views educational/career achievement as betrayal of black identity, and tolerate men who willingly abandon their families.


Here comes my throwaway account for opinions that I suspect sway _WAY OUT_ of HN's comfort zone but needs to be said. I think the term "black culture" is in itself a problem because it blames the victim. The term "culture" makes people think it's something that a group of people chose for themselves. "black culture" isn't the same as "asian culture" or "irish culture". This thing we're all calling "black culture" is the result of slavery and continued racism in America. These are people who had their identity(African culture) ripped from them and left in a world of suffering and oppression. The result is what you see today. If I had a magicwand that could go back in time and remove the whole slavery thing and today's casual & institutionalized racism, you wouldn't be seeing the problems black communities have today. At least it wouldn't be anymore than any other group.


It's a sad place where someone has to create a sock puppet to say "I think slavery had complicated, long-term cultural effects which are often dismissed without a second look, and I think they bear closer inspection."


Indeed. Obama's speech speaks right to it. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MHBdZWbncXI

Everyone, including(maybe even especially) black americans, should watch this speech. Anyone who feels Obama is wrong after watching the video should closely examine themselves for why that is and what beliefs they carry that the speech conflicts with.


Everyone, including(maybe even especially) black americans, should watch this speech

There is nothing in that speech which is not already common-knowledge or thoroughly discussed among blacks.


True. At the least, it's just to let them know that the first black president understands their plight. That they're not inferior or prone to violence by birth(a few really do think that). That in itself is worth something I think. On a sidenote, the fact that my comments aren't getting downvoted shows that there's hope too. Maybe I didn't give HN enough credit and could have used my main HN account to post.


Africa ain't exactly paradise, either.


This is a troll'ish comment that has nothing to do with the current discussion. Or what are you trying to imply here?


You hypothesize that the American black population is suffering because their African culture has been taken away from them. I'm merely pointing out that African culture doesn't seem to have built many thriving populations anywhere.

American black culture wasn't nearly so dysfunctional before the rise of the welfare state and the War on Drugs. Illegitimacy was under 30% in 1960 (compared to about 80% today). That has a lot of knock-on effects for other social ills.


I'm looking at your link, its related links and your comment history. I think I see where it's all going..... I simply say that it's a combination of identity loss and racism. The War on Drugs, particularly weed, was pretty much started purely because of greed & racism. http://www.drugwarrant.com/articles/why-is-marijuana-illegal... When alcohol was attempted to be made illegal, too many white people got mad so that law had to be removed. Since weed mostly effects non-whites, it's illegal to this day. Put them in jail, ruin the background-check, we already know a resume with a black name doesn't get called back as often as a different name - all good for continued welfare. Nobody is saying there'd be zero problems without racism, but it wouldn't be so disproportionately bad. Africa itself also has a troubled history of slavery & other countries colonizing it. Also, the greed and corruption that comes from having diamonds & oil is still a problem today. It is also known that US dollars are funding those military. Also note that there are some parts of Africa that are not bad to live in, you just never see that on American TV. Of course it takes two for that to work, one to give the money and the other to accept it - but greed has millions of dollars & guns and everyone else doesn't, so... I will end here saying that if I had my magicwand-timemachine, went back in time and removed slavery and somehow the corruption related to the country's vast natural resources, things wouldn't be like this. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Natural_resources_of_Africa

And a quick side-note, there was a radio-host. A white woman I believe. They talked about gun-law reform. That's another thing that gets minorities in trouble. She made the comment that if someone started a campaign to get all black males in Oakland signed up with the NRA and obtain a gun legally, gun-laws would be changed immediately. Why don't minorities sign up with NRA to begin with? I don't know, but whatever the reason is, that's why gun-law hasn't changed. I believe that to be very true and I think laws in America are generally set in a way that lowers the likelihood that a non-minority will break them. It probably wasn't that way on purpose at first, but once some people noticed the money from prisons and correction-facilities - combined with American's fear of immigrants... the success of war on drugs in terms of who's getting ruined by it... again not saying there would be zero problems, but the disproportionate levels e see today wouldn't be happening. Don't forget the reason why a lot of black people are even in America to begin with...


Bad luck just seems to follow some people for centuries.

It occurs to me that you could write a similar story of woe for the Chinese who have gone through a rough century or three, and they are the highest earning ethnic group in the USA. It makes one think.


> It makes one think.

No it doesn't. The Chinese were taken from their country, stripped of their culture, made slaves and to this day the main target of racism in America? And their home country is trapped in a pattern of greed & corruption for natural resources?

You and I both know what conclusion you're trying to force without actually saying it. Same thing FOX News does. You're talking exactly like the kind of media that's being described by this vid: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uQnxnYEVp4U


Ah yes, such courage. No white southern male has ever had the daring to cobble together soundbite-derived factoids and unabashed generalizations into a complete theory about how everything could be fixed if The Blacks would just stop blaming everyone else and hiding from The Facts. This is certainly the first time I've seen it.


You do not know me, and I resent your implication that my statements were assembled from soundbites. At no point did I say anything remotely like what you interpreted. I don't at all think "the Blacks" are blaming everyone else, and I said no such thing. You have clearly made assumptions about me based on me being a "white southern male" and judged my statements based on your own caricatures. If I'm the racist you accuse me of being, then why am I married to an Asian woman? Why did I grow up attending black churches (which is where I first heard members of the black community in my town speaking out against the "acting white" taunting)? Why was I the best man in my best friend's wedding recently, a wedding between a black man and an Asian American woman? The same black man who is a fucking pillar of our community and was taunted, beaten, and bullied for "acting white" by awful human beings who happened to be black.

I'm not an idiot. I don't blame "the Blacks" for the awful and continuing effects of 400 years of slavery combined with 100+ years of Jim Crow. Any cultural/ethnic group that survives a 500 year rape is going to have horrific and lasting effects to deal with.

But hey, I'm just a southern white man, so let me go pick up my banjo, and find my sheets for the klan rally tonight. We're gettin us some of that lectricity so we's a celebratin'.

Please, go on and enjoy your day feeling pompous and superior. I doubt you've ever even spent the night in a black person's house, let alone attended a black church, but you sir, are, by nature of your not being southern, more culturally enlightened than me. You smack of being the typical suburban raised white person who was raised in a de facto segregated community, and now does whatever he can to distance himself from it by pointing at others and calling them racist.


Err, neither am I white nor a stranger to black people. Spending the night with one, or marrying one, doesn't make you less racist. What you were writing is very patronizing and sounds uninformed. You can spend your whole life around people and still have no clue what their lives are really about.

I mean, to trot out the "seven times" figure with no context and expect us to treat it like it provides justification for anything is a gross misapplication of statistics.

I also was not raised in the suburbs, but a place that is rural, white and very hostile to anyone who isn't.

EDIT: Moreover, the mere fact that you would trot out the existence of your Asian wife as proof of your non-racism against blacks is proof enough. It's demonstrative of your us-them mindset: see, you can't be racist, you're married to one of them. Nevermind that Asians are not blacks -- it's just that they're not white, and you can't be racist if you like a non-white, right?

(Hint: not right)


You are cherry-picking my words. My Asian wife proves I'm not a racist, period. White racists are pretty much exclusively hateful towards anyone who isn't white. Neo-Nazis, KKK, if you're not a "certain kind" of European, they don't like you. But you know that, and you are reaching. I have a former coworker with the surname "Dhillon", whose ancestry is Punjabi. Maybe you are south Asian, or maybe I'm completely fucking wrong in my assumption. You're not black, and as you said you grew up in a mostly white area. You are no more an authority than I am on any of this. The only difference is that due to the demographics of the particular region of the country I was raised in, most of my friends, neighbors, and schoolmates were native born African Americans. The notion that, because of the color of my skin, I have no right to comment on what I saw and extrapolate it refutes logic. Does this mean that you, as a non-white person who lived in a predominantly white, rural area, are immediately disqualified from commenting on the odd habits of the whites (you labelled them hostile to non-whites) in your neighborhood? Doesn't this mean you are doing the same thing that I did?


No you're not disqualified to comment because you're white. You're not particularly entitled to comment is my point, except in a "I have a mouth and it's my right to use it" sense, and your words do not seem especially imbued with any kind of understanding that you might have gained from your circumstances.

I mean, just the fact that you're bringing out nazis and the klan as your examples of most white racists is absurd. The white racists who are the problem aren't the people who go out of their way to how everyone how much they subscribe to theories of white supremacy. Between those people and, say, Rush Limbaugh listeners or people in favor of starkly discriminatory voter laws, the latter are much more of a threat to daily life. And those people don't think they're racists, because they believe racists have hoods and swastikas.

Jesus it's not cherry-picking at all -- there's a reason why "I can't be racist, my best friend is black" is a joke/gag/dead giveaway of racist attitudes. You should try hard to understand why that is. Presenting the Asian-ness of your wife as if it immunizes you from being racist, or proves you aren't now and can't ever be, is classic tokenization.

Maybe this is a new idea for you, but some white guys marry Asian women because they're racists. They project their weird stereotypes/fetishes into an entire race of women. Cross-race affinity, still racist. Not saying that's you, just saying racist behavior is more than "I don't like those people."

Another thought for you -- people can and often are more racist towards some groups than to others.


The facts are striking, and surprisingly unknown[1]. For example, just 1% of the US population commits 27% of the murder. Can you guess which demographic group that is?

Can you imagine a politician giving a speech about that?

[1] http://takimag.com/article/guns_and_race_steve_sailer/print


Citing violent crime statistics as proof of a "cultural problem" without any regressors is not particularly helpful. What are the relevant demography-adjusted statistics? There are certainly some (edit: sub-)cultural aspects, but every culture has some aspects of the negative traits you cite (e.g. most people tend to disdain out-group achievement). These traits are often drastically accentuated by poverty. In the case of black Americans, doubly so by the compounding effects of high urbanization levels.


The difference in criminal activity between blacks and other American subgroups is so large that it is hard to imagine any regressions making much of a difference. Black males are 6% of the population and commit 53% of the murders, more than the other 94% of the population combined. Keep in mind that there are more poor whites than total blacks in the country, but the black crime numbers are higher than the total white crime numbers.

Finding the root causes of the disparity would be a fascinating sociological challenge, if we had the courage to pursue it.


The US has a much higher tolerance for what in Europe would be considered pretty blatant racism.

Please expand. Nowhere in Europe has anything resembling the 4/5ths rule or Griggs vs Duke Power, no European country has a visible minority community as large as Blacks in the US, and no European country has a policy of discriminating on the basis of race in university admissions, to the best of my knowledge.


Not to mention, if The Golden Dawn tried to start a political party here, they would be laughed off the stage, not given 21 seats in the house.

I think the OP should point out to some actual studies about how much more blatantly racist Americans/America are/is than Europe/Europeans.


> The US has a much higher tolerance for what in Europe would be considered pretty blatant racism.

Really? Because it always seemed the other way around to me--Europe lacks the strong taboos against overt racism that America has evolved. Americans are crypto-racist, but they don't share the shamelessness Europeans seem to have when they show up to football stadiums and make monkey noises at African players or chant "Hamas, Hamas, Jews to the gas" when playing a "Jewish" club. That kind of thing happens in countries like Spain, Italy and Holland but would be unthinkable in the United States.


The US has a much higher tolerance for what in Europe would be considered pretty blatant racism.

Maybe in some spheres but not all. Look at sports, for example. Outright racism by fans against athletes is unheard of in North America whereas it seems pretty common in Europe. Perhaps my perception is biased by the media reporting on it?


> They stopped a few years ago (2006) when the PC media found out that africans and arabs were way, way over-represented in all crime categories.

I would love to see a reference verifying the causality that you are implying when it comes to the decision to drop ethnicity from the statistics.

Also, I sincerely doubt that those of African and Arab ethnicity are over-represented in all crime categories. Violence, petty theft, sure, possibly. This is generally the category which the low-income portion of the population tends to dominate. But I think you will be hard pressed to find a document showing that the ethnics groups you are referencing are more prevalent when it comes to tax fraud.


You don't have to verify the causality.

"media found out that africans and arabs were way, way over-represented in all [violent] crime categories" AND THEN "the Swedish crime prevention board (BRÅ) no longer publish crime statistics containing ethnic background information" is hilarious enough already.


Also, I sincerely doubt that those of African and Arab ethnicity are over-represented in all crime categories...tax fraud.

[Citation needed]

Oops, statistics are secret. Doh!


> This is due to political correctness - something that the US seems to have been spared from. So far.

The reasons for such a move are mixed. Some part is certainly PC, some other part is that the segregation along "race boundaries" is actually misleading. Income class and eduction is usually a way better boundary when segregating crime statistics. However, for a long list of reasons, africans and arabs (or people moving into the country in general) are over-represented in the poorer classes and underrepresented in the richer class which in turn makes them appear stronger in crime statistics.

Another reason is that statistics are often read the wrong way, a problem that occurs very often with the official german crime stats: The most often cited statistic is the "Polizeibericht [1]", but that lists reported crimes - so everything that ever gets reported to the police. Some of those reports never get prosecuted, some get acquitted at trial, ... The police report in Berlin used to list all reports where the perpetrators nationality was unknown as "foreign", an error that seriously skewed the stats for any cursory reader. Statistics like that are a very weak datapoint - useful if you know how to read them, useless or even dangerous for most cases where they're cited. This misrepresentation of public data leads to a certain caution in publishing stats by the persons in charge.

Back to the Topic: I don't think that maps of that kind would get you shot, hanged or made outcast in Europe. Quite to the contrary, such maps exist and do provide valuable insight - though the same caveats that apply for the statistics apply here as well. As an example here's a map of how many non-germans live in berlin by quarter: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/de/7/7d/Bev%C3%B6lkeru... (top left). It's not as fine-grained as the one discussed here, but that's probably more due to unavailability of finer data. More maps of germany in the official report by the "Statistisches Bundesamt" https://www.destatis.de/DE/Publikationen/Thematisch/Bevoelke...

[1] The official name is Polizeiliche Kriminalstatistik (PKS) https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polizeiliche_Kriminalstatistik...


Or, it could be that the police are overly vigilant, or even racist against non-white Swedes, and arrest and incarcerate them at a rate disproportionate to the actual rate of crime.

Stop and Frisk in NYC overwhelmingly targets blacks and latinos, to the point where it's been declared unconstitutional, for example.


Mayor Bloomberg claims that stop and frisk under-targets blacks and hispanics, given the percentage of crime committed[1]. It will be interesting to see if NY becomes Detroit in its absence. NYC is notable for having a lower level of crime than you would expect given its ethnic makeup.

[1] http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/whites_subjected_to_too_m...


Crime victim surveys corroborate those figures.


Just to be clear, corroborate which figures?


It's interesting that if a European uses an ethnic reference as an insult or joke it's interpreted as a sign that Europeans are more racist than Americans, but if Europeans balk at racial profiling it's considered extreme political correctness on the part of the Europeans.

I would suggest the complete opposite is true, on both counts.


The problem with this kind of statistic is that it doesn't really teach us much: "Hey, impoverished communities have a higher rate of criminality! Who would have thought!" while at the same time giving arguments for the far right to simplify the issues and reach simple conclusions.

Maybe there are cases where these statistics could be legitimately useful, but I'm not aware of any.


I don't think this is remotely true. Compiling the statistics does not commit you to a particular use. Obviously, people can abuse them, but here's an example from just this month of a case where you're glad to have the racial breakdown, because it clues you in to a piece of good news and a possible root cause:

http://www.motherjones.com/kevin-drum/2013/08/lead-crime-rac...


Impoverished communities are a problem here.

For some reason whether you have a community of muslims or africans, it happens to be impoverished. On the other hand, if you have a community of asians or western europeans, it doesn't.

That's exactly the problem parent is trying to convey. It's not that africans are inherently criminal, it's just that they have dangerous group dynamics.


> On the other hand, if you have a community of asians or western europeans, it doesn't.

I might be mis-understanding the context here: I've been to a few impoverished communities composed of 98% descendants of Western Europeans. Think: white trash.


And they commit only a fraction of the amount of crime of their black counter-parts: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=6279991


spared?

Really? Where I live they don't give the race of the assailant out, but its assumed and unfortunately all too correctly as to what it is.

I am quite sure a few high up in Washington would like it as such here in the US. Two in particular, our President and Attorney General, seem to go out of their way to jump on racial issues as if its some type of popularity thing, they unfortunately come across as desperate.

Spared my butt, we just do our best to tune it out because its bombarded at us through media and government daily. Like the boy who cried wolf, when you cry wolf so many times when there is none no one will listen when there is.


"Making race maps in Europe would get you shot, your family hanged and all your friends deemed social outcasts forever."

My heart bleeds for you persecuted middle class whites. Oh, the pain and injustice you must endure!


When you control for income and other social factors, it turns out that race is not a risk factor for committing crime.


Either (1) it's true for where you live or (2) you're lying.

Page 46 of BRÅs 1996 report (http://galnegunnarsblogg.files.wordpress.com/2012/09/bra-199...) says the following:

"Invandrares överrepresentation i brottslighet beror inte på en ogynnsam fördelning vad gäller kön, ålder eller bostadsort. Den beror inte heller på en generellt sett låg socioekonomisk status (mätt genom s.k. SEI-kod) i Sverige."

"Immigrants overrepresented in crime is not due to an unfavorable distribution in terms of gender, age or place of residence. It does not depend on the generally low socioeconomic status (as measured by the so-called SEI code) in Sweden."

And now it's your turn: citation needed.


That's what a sociologist/statistician friend of mine[0] told me. I don't have a citation to back it up, but I think he does. I'll ask him if he can provide it.

He lives in Belgium (I used to), and I don't know to which part of the world he was referring to (probably Belgium and/or surrounding countries).

--

0. http://progcours.ulg.ac.be/cocoon/en/enseignant/U191908.html


This is not quite true in the US, since the FBI classifies Hispanics in the "white" category, obscuring crime data between non-Hispanic whites and Hispanics.


"African American" and "White". This is grotesque. Either say black & white, or african american & caucasian american. Pick one.


HN has a policy against numbers in titles as they come off as link-baity...I wish a similar policy applied to titles with such absolute statements as "the best ever" or "what you never knew about..."

This map is not the "best" map ever of racial segregation, though it may be the most comprehensive. I'd argue that a more effective map would include some kind of time element, to show how formerly integrated areas slowly became segregated.


If that data could be collected/found/cross referenced. I doubt that is a possibility, and thus this probably is one of the 'best' maps of segregation (for some definition of best).

Also, this is what a history of segregation looks like. Its worth remembering that small towns, at least in places like Ohio, were so inhospitable to African Americans that they were referred to as "sundown towns" (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sundown_town ).

When people think that racism is over, maps like these serve as a pretty good starting point for asking them to reevaluate their POV.

Of course, there's always this you could start with too:

http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2013/08/13/white-definiti...


Looking at the Bay Area in this map, I noticed a very dense African-American region near Dublin CA that looked out of place. I investigated what it was and was shocked to discover it was the Santa Rita Jail. The map really made it clear how racially skewed the jail population is.


One of the interesting things about this map is that it shows not just distribution, but also density. Non-Caucasian ethnicities are not only concentrated in certain "neighborhoods", they also tend to live in households with far more people per square foot than whites.

From the map, overview of the Bay area: http://hackeress.com/ethnic-distribution-bay-area.png


It's interesting that you can almost always spot the university areas in a city on this map by looking for the cluster of asians.


Russian here. We won't see a similar map of Moscow for two reasons:

1) Immigrants can't afford any housing.

2) Most rent is private and not reported anywhere; most immigrants are illegal and not accounted anywhere.

Moscow won't segregate because people are awfully un-mobile.

If this changes, we may share the fate of cities in USA/Europe.

The problem is that a lot of immigrants are flowing in (from central asia) and there is no political will to limit their influx / control their quality.

Right now all the immigrants work and only resort to crime in dire situations, but I'm afraid this is bound to change if measures are not taken.


That's hilarious, I was wondering if my hometown (ATL) would be broken down, and it's the second one. When I moved back there after college I wanted to do some sort of study of the racial segregation in that city. It's totally along that east-west axis, more precisely at Ponce De Leon Ave. All these upper-class streets that run through the nicest neighborhoods in north Atlanta even change their names as they cross over Ponce.

God, I miss that town every now and then. I'd kill for a hot Krispy Kreme right now.


Also from Atlanta here and I'm always most aware of this when riding MARTA to the airport. Once you get south of downtown, it becomes hard to ignore the strange fact that the only white people still on the train are those with luggage.

And in case it consoles you to know that others are living your dreams, I just had two donuts at the Krispy Kreme on Ponce earlier this morning -- in fact right around the time of your comment. They were delicious but I should really stop going so often.


Aww man. I used to live right around the corner on 3rd street. I don't know if midtown is still as colorful these days, but about ten years ago if you saw an attractive female walking around after dark you could rest assured it was a man. Rural Jersey is slightly less exciting..


Road name changes often happen at city/county lines where the roads actually changed ownership or used to be separate and ended up joined at some point. Not knowing the history or breakdown of the Atlanta area well, would this make sense there?


[deleted]


> The Indians have India.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographics_of_India

> "Not enough black folks, no black community" (aka "I want to be with my own kind")

Cool anecdote.



These guys did an amazing job with the interactive element, but a lot of this is borrowed work! Let's give credit where credit is due:

Bill Rankin posted maps in this exact visual style back in 2009. You can see them (and many other amazing maps he's done) at his blog -- http://www.radicalcartography.net/index.html?chicagodots

Eric Fischer picked up Bill's project and ran with it, composing maps for most of the major US cities with census 2010 data. You can see them all on his Flickr page -- http://www.flickr.com/photos/walkingsf/sets/7215762481267496...

I love great maps, but it's a little disheartening that these precursor projects aren't mentioned anywhere in the article/comments.


Oh god, I read the comments. I know comments on news sites are awful, but I didn't expect that on Wired.


Rookie mistake. Standard rules apply https://twitter.com/AvoidComments


What I find interesting is that the racial breakdown is still so racist.... White, Black, Asian, Hispanic, Other/Multi-racial ??? It's shameful! It's racist because only the White cohort shares any measurable uniformity. Blacks are African-Americans of slave decent, North, East, South, West, and several other groups in between Africans, Asians are even more differentiated. Really??? Tadjiks, Indians, Chinese, Japanese, Malaysians are all just Asian?

It's such a degenerate, lazy, white-centric breakdown. It's a disgrace.

Nice map though!


Italians, Germans, Russians, Irish are all just White? It's such a degenerate, lazy, anti-white breakdown. It's a disgrace.


This is a really cool map! I have a few questions about it though. Racial Segregation are very strong words to use when describing this map. I have lived in Chicago for my whole life. I have heard people say that Chicago is the most segregated city in the US. That line might be true. But when I look at this map it is very hard to draw the assumption that Chicago is incredibly segregated. Looking at this map you could easily say white people live here african american live here and asian / hispanic live here etc... But it is much deeper then the top overview. Chicago has a huge polish , german, irish community. I'm talking about people who have moved from their home country to live in the US. I notice a trend that when polish people move to chicago they move to where polish people live not any old "white" neighborhood they move to a place where they feel comfortable and have common ground. Never in my life have I or the city say white people need to live here and african american live here. There must be a reason that Chinese live on the south side Vietnamese live on the north side and Korean live on the further north side. Latino is the same. I forgot where i was going with this point. But I feel the way we see racial segregation is that some higher power says that we must not live next to each other. When in truth people want to live by their people.


When people talk about segregation in Chicago, they are mostly referring to the black south and near west side, and to a lesser extent the hispanic near-southwest and Little Village areas.

Look closely at the map on this thread, and match it up to a Chicago neighborhood map. Look at the border between Beverly (where I grew up) and Gresham and Brainerd. Look at the borders around Hyde Park. Look at the border between Austin and Oak Park (where I live now). For that matter, look at Lawndale vs Little Village. The borders are sharp, they follow regular lines, and generally involve a 90+% majority black neighborhood on one side.

There are a bunch of reasons this happened:

* The Great Migration, during which Chicago was a giant magnet for rural black southerners

* Redlining, the overtly racist/segregationist practice of refusing home loans to black families in "non-black" neighborhoods

* The construction of the Ryan, which displaced black families who ended up moving to places like Englewood

* The construction of the CHA high rise housing projects, which were concentrated in areas that would eventually become majority-black

* The subsequent flight of white families from places like Englewood, which went from 10% black immediately after WW2 to 98+%(!) black in 1980

It's important to note that with the possible exception of Beverly, which really is a white Irish enclave, the non-black non-hispanic neighborhoods in Chicago aren't intolerant, and have black representation roughly in line with their representation in the population as a whole. If you live in Avondale or Rogers Park or Lakeview, it probably doesn't look at all segregated.

Also, Chicago isn't the most segregated city in the US.


Thank you for responding. I just feel that "racial segregation" are the wrong words to use when describing this map. and yes the reasons you have posted are for the most part true. They are now a little outdated but they were things that happened in the past that have contributed to our present. I would like to believe that chicgoans have made many strides in certain areas of the city to become more diverse. But who knows. If we continue to try we can hopefully change our present to a better future.


I love this map, but really hate the implementation. Dots overlaid on white makes dots really hard to see. I'd love to be able to set the background to black or something.

Also, last time this was featured on Fark the map became quickly unusable. Would be nice if they could generate some KML files or something that could be used outside of their website.


After seeing Los Angeles and the map of the west in general, I believe the Latinos are significantly under-counted.

I had anticipated this to some extent in daily life but it was driven home a few years ago. I lived in a very "latino" neighborhood, unusual to see anyone else...

When election time came around, I got in line of perhaps 50-100 people at a very busy polling place. Bored, I looked down the line at each person. Gone were the folks I was used to seeing every day, in fact I was hard-pressed to find any. I counted one or two latinos in the whole line, and they were not from the migrant-worker class... i.e. poorer Mexican or Central American Indians.

It is probable a larger percentage of these folks will submit to the Census bureau than registering to vote, but how much? As a whole they are not well integrated.


Before this comment forum devolves into the usual level of strife trying to grapple with what race "is," I'd like to offer two articles.

What We Mean When We Say 'Race Is a Social Construct' - http://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2013/05/what-we-...

The Point Is Not To Interpret Whiteness But To To Abolish It by Noel Ignatiev - http://racetraitor.org/abolishthepoint.html (the stuff about "White Studies" (obviously contextual) and Marxist tie-ins are totally optional to understanding the central points, I believe)


If there was not hatred (not gonna happen, by the way), would segregation still be a bad thing?

Is there something inherently WRONG with people gravitating toward and feeling most comfortable around people who look like themselves?


I ran a check with Google using "define: segregation" and the definition included, "the act of setting". The title uses the term segregation perhaps innocently but incorrectly. People live where they choose. If the government said they had to live somewhere then it would be segregation. So it's really a map of where people tend to settle. HN should not have allowed the title to stand as is. Perhaps HN feels it's necessary to engage in sensationalism like some of the other similar sites I never or rarely go to any more for technical news.


Words rarely have a single definition. Those definitions often have substantial history behind them.


I gave you the step to find the top level, world-wide definition in Google. You say there are other definitions. Ok let's check the Wiki:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Racial_segregation

"Segregation itself is defined by the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance as "the act by which a (natural or legal) person separates other persons"

If people separate, or group, themselves according to their own desires then that is not segregation according to Google and according to the Wiki which sites at least the "European Commission against Racism and Intolerance".

You may disagree with me but I've provided two worldwide known references both in agreement with each other and with me. The use of the word segregation was wrong by the original author and wrong by HN for posting it that way.


I'm surprised they didn't use Washington D.C. as one of the featured images. The contrast is nearly as start as Detroit's.


Me too - for the lazy:

http://i.imgur.com/dBIBuCD.jpg

The Rock Creek Park divide is just as noticeable on the map as it is driving around the area. On a larger scale, the SE/NW divide is exactly what you'd expect. Keep in mind that the city itself is (or at least was, before gentrification) predominately black, and the SE areas are the poorest.


What would make the DC map even more interesting would be to watch it over time as more "blue" moves into those "green" areas around Columbia Heights, Petworth, Shaw etc.


D.C over time would be a great thing to see.


Interesting project but it seems only useful at all for large cities. I zoomed in on the rural area I live in and there wasn't anything. They mention toggling between color and black and white but there still wasn't anything there.


Given the reservations in the US, it would have been nice to see Native Americans have their own color. It would be a nice touch to compare reservation vs. urban conclaves.


Take a guess where 8 Mile Road is in Detroit:

http://cl.ly/image/2m0u3y282M1H


I'd like to see a similar map that explores other attributes such as income, family size, etc.


Dang. I have been looking for a GIS/BigData project, and this was one of my ideas.


Try doing this for previous datasets, so that you can compare maps and extrapolate trends over time. Say, the 2000, 1990, 1980 census data.


Hispanic isn't a race


Stop trying to force people to like one another. Social engineering is not like other forms of engineering; it depends on values outside a count of interchangeable parts. Many of humanity's worst outcomes have emerged from such well-intentioned but oblivious social engineering.


Stop projecting.


[deleted]


Nobody's trying to make anybody do anything, they're making a map of racial distributions. If you see that is a threat, it's because you think that some of the beliefs that you have would be seen as racist - and you're projecting onto the makers of a map.

I use white friends to make apartment inquiries for me in neighborhoods known for housing discrimination, do I exist?

150 years ago, white people were far more likely to know and live near black people. Did nature somehow change in the interim?

Separate but equal was a set of laws imposing a behavior from above. The equal part wasn't true, and it wasn't 100 years ago. It was the environment that my parents grew up in, and I went to a segregated school myself. It wasn't anything that black people had or have any choice over, or preferred.


Oregon looks like a nice place to live </sarcasm>

Cool and interesting maps.


> Oregon looks like a nice place to live </sarcasm>

Not sure why you applied a sarcasm tag. I can't speak for all of Oregon, but Portland is quite nice.


The sarcasm tag was because Portland is all white. I didn't want to offend anyone.


> Oregon looks like a nice place to live

It is, thanks, if you don't mind the crappy weather.




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