Yesterday, an article on Salon.com named Milwaukee the most segregated city (of at least 500,000 people) in the country. Weâ€™ve heard this before, and weâ€™ll hear it again. For now, sadly, we top this latest list that features New York City as the second most segregated city and Chicago as the third.
The rankings are based on a dissimilarity index -- a measure used by social scientists to interpret residential segregation -- and the recent census.
The article says that 90 percent of African Americans living in Milwaukee live in the city. University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee professor Marc Levine says Milwaukee has a very low rate of African Americans living in suburbs compared to other cities its size. Also, it suggests that de-industrialization is the largest contributing factor to Milwaukee's segregation.
What can we do to change this, Milwaukee?
There is something to be said about 'don't do anything'. For one, you don't really hear a lot of people on the ground on either side saying 'i wish i lived in a more affluent community'. The people who keep telling us Milwaukee is segregated, are politicians and pundits, they are the people who tell us it is a problem. If black people want to live near other black people, let them. If Latino's want to live near other Latino's let them. Forced desegregation is a terrible idea.
Also, while not wanting to use a wide paintbrush to prejudge, i think the materialistic culture of certain ethnic groups are more an attribute to segregation that some white 'glass ceiling' that exists on 60th, Holton, Walnut, etc. ALl you need to do is look out your window and you will find that many minority families could afford to live in West Allis, Greenfield, South Milwaukee, etc, if they lived a bit more frugally. If they want a nicer car, nicer clothes, a nicer TV and sound system, like to eat out more, i don't begrudge them for it. Again, i know this isn't a 100% sort of application, but I myself choose to live in an area with higher rent rates in exchange for really pinching pennies in other areas. It's just a matter of preference.
"The article says that 90 percent of African Americans living in Milwaukee live in the city."
I thought 100% of African Americans living in Milwaukee live in Milwaukee.
Eastside, tell your friend he's lucky that he just gets harassed a little bit by the cops (not saying it's right). The segregation is a two way street: if you are white and happen to venture into a neighborhood on the Northwest Side, believe me, you will not be made to feel welcome. I've been stared down, yelled at, my car has been swarmed, and I've even had a car speed up to try and hit me while crossing the street; the general message is: you are not welcome, get the hell out.
A big part of the segregation problem lies in the fact that the majority of suburbs go out of their way to make minorities feel unwelcome. I have a friend who lives in Franklin and he says he gets pulled over all the time in his own neighborhood for no reason other than he's the only Black guy who lives there. It's unfortunate too, rather than having all of the low-income Black and Brown people ghettoized within the city limits, I think some of the burden on local schools and social services could be evenly distributed by having the suburbs pick up some of the slack. I know if I were African American or Latino and raising a family, I would rather live somewhere like West Bend or Grafton where you could rent a nice apartment or house on the cheap, crime is almost non-existent, and the schools are excellent as opposed to Metcalfe Park or Mitchell Street.
And I believe "Milwaukee" in this study really refers to the greater metro area, beyond city limits, so didn't Mr. Walker solve this problem when he was County Exec? At least his county's part of it?
Show me the other 7 Talkbacks
12 comments about this article.
Post your comment/review now
Disclaimer: Please note that Facebook comments are posted through Facebook and cannot be approved, edited or declined by OnMilwaukee.com. The opinions expressed in Facebook comments do not necessarily reflect those of OnMilwaukee.com or its staff.
Recent Articles & Blogs by Molly Snyder
Published May 27, 2016
According to a source, Yield, 1932 E. Kenilworth Ave., closed last night and once word spread through social media, so many customers showed up it turned into a "borderline block party."
Published May 27, 2016
My family and I decided to head to Schaumburg, Ill., this past weekend to visit Medieval Times, one of nine locations in the chain, to find out - among other things - what would happen if we asked for a fork. Turns out, 'twas a beauteous adventure and better food experience than expected.
Published May 25, 2016
Today on FOX's "Studio A," OnMilwaukee's Molly Snyder reads host Bryan Kramp's tarot cards. Tune in to find out if he got the Devil card or not. In the meantime, read about the local tarot scene from Jen CintrÃ³n and Theresa Reed, aka The Tarot Lady.
Published May 23, 2016
Reinventing ourselves takes a lot of guts, something all five of these women - who switched careers at the age of 40 or older - have plenty of. Some left the corporate world, some joined it, but all of them share one thing in common: they are now closer to their True Norths.
Published May 20, 2016
Paul Hepp will launch his new brewery-and history-tours-by-bus business that's simply called Fun Beer Tours on Friday, May 20. Hepp says Fun Beer Tours is a mix of his two passions: craft beer and local brewery history.
Published May 19, 2016
It was a rollicking soft opening tonight at Urban Bay View, 2301 S. Logan St., the second business venture of Paul Jonas, who also owns Tonic Tavern, and is managed by longtime Tonic bartender and bellweather of the service industry, Paul "PK" Kennedy.
Published May 18, 2016
Harley-Davidson launched a new concept in Milwaukee, Portland and Los Angeles today: a pop-up bike share that gives riders the chance to test out the new Dark Custom Harley-Davidson Roadster. In Milwaukee, the pop-up popped up in the Third Ward on Broadway.
Published May 18, 2016
Josh Silberman, who grew up on Milwaukee's North Shore, knew at a young age that he wanted to have a career in film and television in Los Angeles. He was partially inspired by his cousin, the great Gene Wilder, and partly by his own love of adventure and travel.
Published May 17, 2016
In late May, Sprecher Brewing Company will introduce three new "hard sodas": Hard Cherry Cola, Hard Orange Cream and Hard Cola. The local brewery already offers Hard Root Beer, Hard Ginger Ale and Hard Apple Pie.
Published May 16, 2016
New Orleans jazz musician Trombone Shorty created an inspiring children's picture book based on his own life that documents his musical journey and his determination to make his dreams come true as a musician.