Obama Administration Sticking it to Whitey

Is the Obama administration, or at least some officials in it, hostile toward whites? This is certainly an awkward, publicly unspeakable question -- and answering it is exceptionally difficult. Not easy to discern the motives of countless Washington bureaucrats. 

Nevertheless, recent events outside of Baltimore, MD suggest that enmity toward whites does afflict some Obama administrators and our proof, though short of the smoking gun standard, is probably as good as it gets. 

In a nutshell, thanks to Washington’s money and political pressure, thousands of poor blacks will now be re-located from Baltimore’s slums to upgraded housing in the surrounding, nearly all-white suburbs.  

Baltimore County will spend $30 million over the next decade to help private developers build 1000 homes for low-income African American families in affluent suburbs. In addition, the country will create 2000 units of subsidized Section 8 housing where residents will have access to better schools and less crime (housing must be built or rented in racially integrated clusters to avoid creating new ghettoes).

To ensure that these new residences are family friendly, 500 units must contain three or more bedrooms. Housing access will be encouraged by requiring landlords to consider all sources of income -- including public welfare -- in assessing tenant creditworthiness. Participants will also receive help with moving expenses and security deposits. And to facilitate integration into new (white) neighborhoods, extensive counseling (called “Mobility Counseling Programs”) will teach newcomers about housekeeping and property maintenance, good neighbor skills, financial management and budgeting.  

Government sponsored re-location of poor black city residents into affluent white suburbs is hardly new and rests on a theory positing the malleability of human behavior: pathological behaviors are environmentally determined and so just improve environments and “bad” behavior will vanish. Specifically, moving underclass African Americans to pleasant white, affluent towns will see a notable reduction of crime, illegitimacy, drug and alcohol addiction, welfare dependency, domestic violence and other tribulations currently plaguing black inner-city neighborhoods. In addition, the transformation will succeed absent any prior psychological changes of new arrivals. In effect, an industrious law-abiding African American who autonomously flees to the suburbs to live a better life is identical to his Baltimore neighbor motivated solely by the promise of a more spacious, cheap apartment.   

It is also assumed that pathologies will be mitigated by inter-racial, inter-class contact. For example, lower class black youngsters will improve academically if they encounter more studious white classmates. And osmosis will flow only one way -- white youngster will not gravitate toward crime when socializing with black inner city refugees.

It is hard to think of a more incorrect theory of human behavior. Tellingly, when such enterprises are discussed in official reports, the stress overwhelmingly is on the benefits to the recipients and advice on how to overcome (white) public resistance. The unspeakable harsh truth is that these newly relocated inner-city residents will bring their pathologies with them and after a few years the areas surrounding the freshly built homes and Section 8 apartments will resemble dilapidated crime-ridden Baltimore.

If the transformative power of a better physical setting were correct, how do you explain massive white resistance to such enterprises? Are the millions of whites who over countless decades fled the influx of underclass blacks hallucinating or being fooled by racial demagogues?  If such population movement worked as advertised, why must Washington impose it by court decrees, fines for non-compliance and other cram-down measures? How can advocates of this alleged panacea explain why busing thousands of academically troubled poor black students to top-flight “white” schools has failed? Is leafy small town America the magic cure for drug addiction and illegitimacy?  Recall Ferguson, MO: put troubled black residents of St. Louis into a nice white suburb, and you create a new St. Louis slum.  

Now for the near-smoking gun proofs that this enterprise smells of contempt for whites. First, all this draconian coercion is outside federal law regulating discrimination in housing. Legal penalties for housing discrimination have nothing to do with coerced integration and to obscure the non-legal gun-to-the-head power, the consent of whites is officially deemed “voluntary.”  No doubt, the hapless whites of Baltimore Country just realize that resistance is futile; you will be absorbed by the federal colossus.

Second, prudence would suggest a modicum of cost/benefit analysis of this enterprise, and this scrutiny is totally absent (see here for a sampling of research on the alleged advantage of such re-locations). Only the supposed benefits for blacks inform calculations, for example, better schools, and experience suggests that these are likely to be transitory. Nor is there any mention of how the new arrivals will find employment in suburban areas with limited public transportation.

Total silence surrounds the inevitable costs for whites: loss of home equity, increased school violence, more crime, and the shredded social cohesion associated with imposed racial diversity and, in the long run, the costs of moving elsewhere. Indeed, HUD is already anticipating white flight and is trying to impose rules that would forbid real estate agents from openly discussing the negative consequences forthcoming racial shift.

Of the utmost importance for this near smoking gun evidence, these benefits provided to blacks need not come at the expense of whites. The same millions could have been spent in the city of Baltimore building nice homes for blacks adjacent to their old residences and if suburban whites were guilty of racial discrimination, just fine them versus (non-legally) imposing unwanted integration. Moreover, inner-city construction could have utilized nearby unemployed African American Baltimore residents who would, as an extra dividend, gain some job training (the model is Habitat for Humanity). Everything would be win/win politics. But, this sensible win-win solution fails to harm whites and so it is politically off limits. 

Beyond these immediate problems inflicted on whites will be, in all likelihood, the political costs of changing these once relatively racially homogeneous suburbs. Ferguson, MO is the future: more communal racial strife, yet more whites will flee, civil rights groups demanding more “inclusionary” policies, and, eventually, Department of Justice intervention to remedy alleged race-related injustices -- a “too white” police department, too few black office holders or an excessive expulsion rates of black students, to name but a few possibilities.        

One can only wonder why officials cannot foresee this racial-train-wreck-in-the-making. This is punitive policy-making that can only reflect the presence of deeply rooted racial animosities. Helping poor African Americans find decent housing is just the polite cover story. At least some government officials in the Obama administration want to punish suburban whites and given that Uncle Sam will foot the bills, inflicting this damage is irresistible.

Is the Obama administration, or at least some officials in it, hostile toward whites? This is certainly an awkward, publicly unspeakable question -- and answering it is exceptionally difficult. Not easy to discern the motives of countless Washington bureaucrats. 

Nevertheless, recent events outside of Baltimore, MD suggest that enmity toward whites does afflict some Obama administrators and our proof, though short of the smoking gun standard, is probably as good as it gets. 

In a nutshell, thanks to Washington’s money and political pressure, thousands of poor blacks will now be re-located from Baltimore’s slums to upgraded housing in the surrounding, nearly all-white suburbs.  

Baltimore County will spend $30 million over the next decade to help private developers build 1000 homes for low-income African American families in affluent suburbs. In addition, the country will create 2000 units of subsidized Section 8 housing where residents will have access to better schools and less crime (housing must be built or rented in racially integrated clusters to avoid creating new ghettoes).

To ensure that these new residences are family friendly, 500 units must contain three or more bedrooms. Housing access will be encouraged by requiring landlords to consider all sources of income -- including public welfare -- in assessing tenant creditworthiness. Participants will also receive help with moving expenses and security deposits. And to facilitate integration into new (white) neighborhoods, extensive counseling (called “Mobility Counseling Programs”) will teach newcomers about housekeeping and property maintenance, good neighbor skills, financial management and budgeting.  

Government sponsored re-location of poor black city residents into affluent white suburbs is hardly new and rests on a theory positing the malleability of human behavior: pathological behaviors are environmentally determined and so just improve environments and “bad” behavior will vanish. Specifically, moving underclass African Americans to pleasant white, affluent towns will see a notable reduction of crime, illegitimacy, drug and alcohol addiction, welfare dependency, domestic violence and other tribulations currently plaguing black inner-city neighborhoods. In addition, the transformation will succeed absent any prior psychological changes of new arrivals. In effect, an industrious law-abiding African American who autonomously flees to the suburbs to live a better life is identical to his Baltimore neighbor motivated solely by the promise of a more spacious, cheap apartment.   

It is also assumed that pathologies will be mitigated by inter-racial, inter-class contact. For example, lower class black youngsters will improve academically if they encounter more studious white classmates. And osmosis will flow only one way -- white youngster will not gravitate toward crime when socializing with black inner city refugees.

It is hard to think of a more incorrect theory of human behavior. Tellingly, when such enterprises are discussed in official reports, the stress overwhelmingly is on the benefits to the recipients and advice on how to overcome (white) public resistance. The unspeakable harsh truth is that these newly relocated inner-city residents will bring their pathologies with them and after a few years the areas surrounding the freshly built homes and Section 8 apartments will resemble dilapidated crime-ridden Baltimore.

If the transformative power of a better physical setting were correct, how do you explain massive white resistance to such enterprises? Are the millions of whites who over countless decades fled the influx of underclass blacks hallucinating or being fooled by racial demagogues?  If such population movement worked as advertised, why must Washington impose it by court decrees, fines for non-compliance and other cram-down measures? How can advocates of this alleged panacea explain why busing thousands of academically troubled poor black students to top-flight “white” schools has failed? Is leafy small town America the magic cure for drug addiction and illegitimacy?  Recall Ferguson, MO: put troubled black residents of St. Louis into a nice white suburb, and you create a new St. Louis slum.  

Now for the near-smoking gun proofs that this enterprise smells of contempt for whites. First, all this draconian coercion is outside federal law regulating discrimination in housing. Legal penalties for housing discrimination have nothing to do with coerced integration and to obscure the non-legal gun-to-the-head power, the consent of whites is officially deemed “voluntary.”  No doubt, the hapless whites of Baltimore Country just realize that resistance is futile; you will be absorbed by the federal colossus.

Second, prudence would suggest a modicum of cost/benefit analysis of this enterprise, and this scrutiny is totally absent (see here for a sampling of research on the alleged advantage of such re-locations). Only the supposed benefits for blacks inform calculations, for example, better schools, and experience suggests that these are likely to be transitory. Nor is there any mention of how the new arrivals will find employment in suburban areas with limited public transportation.

Total silence surrounds the inevitable costs for whites: loss of home equity, increased school violence, more crime, and the shredded social cohesion associated with imposed racial diversity and, in the long run, the costs of moving elsewhere. Indeed, HUD is already anticipating white flight and is trying to impose rules that would forbid real estate agents from openly discussing the negative consequences forthcoming racial shift.

Of the utmost importance for this near smoking gun evidence, these benefits provided to blacks need not come at the expense of whites. The same millions could have been spent in the city of Baltimore building nice homes for blacks adjacent to their old residences and if suburban whites were guilty of racial discrimination, just fine them versus (non-legally) imposing unwanted integration. Moreover, inner-city construction could have utilized nearby unemployed African American Baltimore residents who would, as an extra dividend, gain some job training (the model is Habitat for Humanity). Everything would be win/win politics. But, this sensible win-win solution fails to harm whites and so it is politically off limits. 

Beyond these immediate problems inflicted on whites will be, in all likelihood, the political costs of changing these once relatively racially homogeneous suburbs. Ferguson, MO is the future: more communal racial strife, yet more whites will flee, civil rights groups demanding more “inclusionary” policies, and, eventually, Department of Justice intervention to remedy alleged race-related injustices -- a “too white” police department, too few black office holders or an excessive expulsion rates of black students, to name but a few possibilities.        

One can only wonder why officials cannot foresee this racial-train-wreck-in-the-making. This is punitive policy-making that can only reflect the presence of deeply rooted racial animosities. Helping poor African Americans find decent housing is just the polite cover story. At least some government officials in the Obama administration want to punish suburban whites and given that Uncle Sam will foot the bills, inflicting this damage is irresistible.