Via Daily Kos:
…there is a new study from the Economic Policy Institute titled “The Making of Ferguson” which suggests that conditions in towns like Ferguson are not random or accidental, but are instead the result of nearly a century of bigoted public policy and private biases against black people.
Follow over the fold to read more.
The study’s author Richard Rothstein spoke with BillMoyers.com this week:
Rothstein: The segregation that characterizes Ferguson, and that characterizes St. Louis, was the creation of purposeful public policy. We have a segregated nation by design.
The St. Louis metropolitan area was no different from most metropolitan areas of the country. The ghetto in the central city of St. Louis was redeveloped for universities, and for a number of other uses, and the African American population in the central city was shifted to inner ring suburbs like Ferguson.It was done primarily with two policies: First, public housing was segregated, purposely, by the federal government, so that what were previously somewhat integrated neighborhoods in urban areas were separated into separate black and white public housing projects.
And then, in the 1950s, as suburbs came to be developed, the federal government subsidized white residents of St. Louis to move to the suburbs, but effectively prohibited black residents from doing so. The federal government subsidized the construction of many, many subdivisions by requiring that bank loans for the builders be made on the condition that no homes be sold to blacks.
Because black housing was so restrictive, there were so few places where African-Americans could live in St. Louis. So what was left of St. Louis’ African American community became overcrowded. City services were not readily available. The city was zoned so that the industrial or commercial areas were placed in black neighborhoods but not in white neighborhoods. So the industrial areas, where African Americans lived, became slums.