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Old 03-02-2014, 12:30 PM
 
Location: North by Northwest
7,442 posts, read 9,877,128 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jerbear30 View Post
This is true, but Spike does have a bigger audience.
Spike Lee is famous and commands attention, but so what? We should be able to see past the hype and gather our commentary from people who are authorized to speak as experts on the subject. This isn't a simple matter of me not "liking" Spike Lee. For example, while I'm not the biggest fan of Cornel West, because he's an academic who is capable of articulating his beliefs in a mature, rational fashion, I find him to be worth listening to, even if I don't necessarily agree with his viewpoints.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jerbear30 View Post
The question is not whether we like Spike or whether we don't, but whether what he's saying deserves to be at least talked about.
That's the question as you interpret it. I see it differently, in part due to the fact that the thread is titled "Spike Lee on Gentrification."

Quote:
Originally Posted by jerbear30 View Post
There are a lot of young, relatively wealthy white people who have moved into historically diverse neighborhoods, raising rents and causing people with roots in the area to have to move. That is just a fact.
No arguments there.

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Originally Posted by jerbear30 View Post
The thing that gets me is how these same people who have driven up rent prices want nothing to do with their own responsibility. Even if this population is demographically quite liberal, educated, etc... What we are seeing now is that in the end they are carrying forward the reactionary tradition of absolute disavowal of responsibility they've inherited from previous (usually) white generations.
I don't think it's quite fair to make this kind of a blanket statement. What is this "reactionary tradition of absolute disavowal of responsibility" for starters?

I will say that gentrification has its pros and its cons. I will also say (to quote a response I recently posted in another thread) that "that no one group of people has the inherent right to 'be in control' of any neighborhood, be they upper class whites in an exurban gated community or working poor minorities in the inner city." A gentrifying neighborhood's "incoming haves" certainly have more power (in a variety of respects) than the "longer-standing have-nots." But above all else, both sides need to break down their self-imposed barriers and sit down and have a conversation. I would support Spike Lee wholeheartedly if he used his celebrity as a means of getting people to just start by talking things out.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jerbear30 View Post
It's like when people buy a bunch of expensive organic food and they justify the expense because through some magic it's going to result in lower prices for others to buy organic in the future, only with entire neighborhoods. It's trickle down economics used by the very people who would decry trickle-down economics, only masked because now it serves their interests.
I think most gentrifiers simply see an opportunity to live in a "cool, up-and-coming neighborhood" at a relatively low price-point (at least when the gentrification begins). While I don't doubt some gentrifiers have that sickening sort of "white/upwardly mobile savior" mentality, I feel most are simply seeking out a place to live.
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Old 03-02-2014, 04:16 PM
 
Location: Michigan
2,198 posts, read 2,243,964 times
Reputation: 2091
Quote:
Originally Posted by drive carephilly View Post
urban divestment was a series of federal policy decisions and that's really the long and short of it. things didn't turn around until a lot of the most egregious anti-urban stuff was nixed during the Clinton administration.

If you work in municipal planning or know much about city politics you know that where city money and city services go is about politics and campaign cash. First and foremost, neighborhoods in decline see their services decline. If your entire city is in decline then the neighborhoods losing the population the fastest are going to see services cut the fastest. On the other hand, your city councilperson isn't doing his or her job if s/he isn't bringing home an outsized portion of city money.

It also matters a great deal which party is running your state and/or county government and which one is running your city.

I've lived in mostly white neighborhoods, mostly black neighborhoods and diverse neighborhoods in my city
and I've been around long enough to know that nothing changed in any of those neighborhoods until the fortunes of the city changed as a whole . . . the one white neighborhood that I lived in that got better services wasn't getting those services from the city. It was from a BID that local property owners were paying through the nose for.




$80k household income is decent money . . . but it's not that great for DC. PG County is significantly less wealthy than all of the counties around it - including the District itself. Still, I think your 9 year old article is well past its expiration date, even through the mortgage/foreclosure crisis (which wasn't particularly kind to PG) there's been quite a bit of development there since then.



Of course. But the mistake is in assuming that this stuff only happens to black people and is only 'perpetrated' by white people. As if all white people are the same and that the socio-economics of white neighborhoods don't change dramatically just because a neighborhood remains majority white. That the white working class residents of Fishtown and East Passyunk don't groan about 'the yuppies and hipsters' and how "now all of the sudden the city cares."

Not knowing about those things and/or not caring to find out isn't evidence of racism - it's a complete lack of perspective.

As if white people don't try to bust other white people for not cleaning up after their dogs
Passyunk Community Deals With Dog Owners Who Don't Clean Up - Philadelphia News, Weather and Sports from WTXF FOX 29

Or that latino guys don't call out black guys for the same thing
Man Killed in Dog Poop Dispute: Cops | NBC 10 Philadelphia

Or that entitled black and asian people don't move into a neighborhood and expect everything to change to their standards, don't call the police on the white kids playing music in their basement or the guy selling satay on the corner without a license . . . I know they do. I've met them.

On the other hand, when my drunken block party goes past 11 (when it's legally required to be over by 9) is when fights happen and guns get drawn so when it gets to be 11 I go inside and call the police to come break it up. 12 hours of socializing and boozing is enough. When you know your neighbors you know when stuff is about to go down and I don't need to pull any more bullet frags out of my brickwork.

When people put their garbage in front of my house the day after the pick up because they forgot that trash gets picked up the same day every week for the last 20 years and they don't want to deal with it at their house for another week . . .and I get a ticket for it on top of having to deal with the flies and the smell . . . damn straight I'm reporting them to sanitation. And when you call them out on it you get "I lived on this block for 20 years." When the store across the street puts in an illegal grill and starts a fire that almost takes down half the block . . . damn straight I'm calling L&I every time they change a light bulb.



My neighborhood is about 55% owner occupied. The average annual property tax bill is <$400. People like it that way, people want it to stay that way, then they complain about the crap municipal services. Old ladies complain about "those boys on the corner" but won't call the cops. In a neighborhood of 13,000 people 7 old ladies show up to the monthly police meeting. They complain about that streetlight being out and say "I told my committee man" so they think they don't have to call 311. Wanting things to change and looking for things to change are something completely different from doing something to make them change and different from being socially and/or politically and/or tech savvy enough to make stuff happen. That has nothing to do with being white and everything to do with being under 50 with a decent education.

The problem in my neighborhood and in cities like Camden and neighborhoods like Ft. Greene wasn't a lack of well-intentioned people. It was a brain drain. The people who were best equipped to lead the neighborhood/city abandoned it. That's why you have inept leadership all the way down to the ward level. Spike Lee didn't stick around to lead the renaissance in Ft. Greene - he left for Manhattan. More importantly, people don't vote for the best person to lead them, they vote for the person most like them. You only need to follow national politics for a minute to see how that plays out on a bigger stage - when poorly educated, paranoid white people vote for people just like them.



And here I agree for the most part . . . but these aren't problems cities can solve on their own. Cities don't have the resources to solve the schools problem. They might be able to pull off the housing problem in cities like Philly where houses are still cheap but in a place like NYC or SF that's not really possible . . . besides, housing is regional (especially when you can have neighbors across the street who live in a different municipality) and needs to be solved on a regional level.
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Old 03-02-2014, 04:35 PM
 
Location: Crooklyn, New York
28,258 posts, read 26,226,229 times
Reputation: 11716
Quote:
Originally Posted by HeavenWood View Post
Spike Lee is famous and commands attention, but so what? We should be able to see past the hype and gather our commentary from people who are authorized to speak as experts on the subject. This isn't a simple matter of me not "liking" Spike Lee. For example, while I'm not the biggest fan of Cornel West, because he's an academic who is capable of articulating his beliefs in a mature, rational fashion, I find him to be worth listening to, even if I don't necessarily agree with his viewpoints.
Well, to be fair to Spike, he didn't show up at Pratt to discuss the ills of gentrification. He was invited there to talk about filmmaking. He was asked about gentrification and he gave an answer. The "rant" was only a small part of the evening. It's not like he showed up to present a well-thought research thesis on a panel with sociologists and community activists.
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Old 03-02-2014, 07:04 PM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
27,165 posts, read 29,655,359 times
Reputation: 26651
Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
Agreed to a point! If your kid is doing well, it doesn't matter what the rest of the school is doing, again, to a point. This is more the case in elementary school that HS. You need to go to a HS that offers some higher-level courses, e.g. honors classes, AP classes, college prep, etc if you intend to go to college. Parental involvement, yeah, that's a biggie.
Yup, but the way I see it, if I have a 3 year old, and my elementary school is on the right track, I've got plenty of time to figure out high school. It is very common, in my city for middle class families to send their kids to private school or move, but most stick around through ages roughly 12-14 in public school. But high schools are trending up, so who knows what the school landscape will look like then. The high school nearest to me went from mediocre to the 2nd best in the district and added lots of AP classes/etc. over the past 10 years, so it went from being skip to recommend for people in the neighborhood. A lot can happen in a decade, I have seen it in my neighborhood.
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Old 03-02-2014, 07:56 PM
Status: "Summer!" (set 17 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
86,992 posts, read 102,554,590 times
Reputation: 33058
Quote:
Originally Posted by jade408 View Post
Yup, but the way I see it, if I have a 3 year old, and my elementary school is on the right track, I've got plenty of time to figure out high school. It is very common, in my city for middle class families to send their kids to private school or move, but most stick around through ages roughly 12-14 in public school. But high schools are trending up, so who knows what the school landscape will look like then. The high school nearest to me went from mediocre to the 2nd best in the district and added lots of AP classes/etc. over the past 10 years, so it went from being skip to recommend for people in the neighborhood. A lot can happen in a decade, I have seen it in my neighborhood.
Time to figure it out, yes. Time for the school to improve, maybe. Schools are highly bureaucratic and change very, very, very, s - l -o- w- l- y. Ten years may not be enough time.
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Old 03-02-2014, 08:30 PM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
27,165 posts, read 29,655,359 times
Reputation: 26651
Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
Time to figure it out, yes. Time for the school to improve, maybe. Schools are highly bureaucratic and change very, very, very, s - l -o- w- l- y. Ten years may not be enough time.
It may not be enough, but you can also say your tried (provided you are happy in the neighborhood otherwise). It is worth the risk in my book.
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Old 03-02-2014, 08:32 PM
 
Location: North by Northwest
7,442 posts, read 9,877,128 times
Reputation: 4691
Quote:
Originally Posted by jade408 View Post
It may not be enough, but you can also say your tried (provided you are happy in the neighborhood otherwise). It is worth the risk in my book.
I suppose that's a risk I'd be alright with taking if I'd be willing/able to pay for private school as a backup.
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Old 03-02-2014, 08:39 PM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
46,053 posts, read 29,509,053 times
Reputation: 7830
Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
Time to figure it out, yes. Time for the school to improve, maybe. Schools are highly bureaucratic and change very, very, very, s - l -o- w- l- y. Ten years may not be enough time.
We always had a saying in the architecture world, popular opinions of the built world can change rapidly, the work field of architecture changes slowly, and the architecture schooling changes slowly, long after everyone else has changed.

Basically it is a process with changing an education system, it takes year after year of more and more parents wanting to improve their education system for it to show the true effect because the effects of these changes are not something you can measure overnight.

In North Portland the schools there use to be some of the worst, but North Portland has seen an influx of parents that are all about neighborhood involvement and have made themselves be a part if the solution which has caused major improvements to their local schools which won't see that reflection of improvements for several more years, but it will.
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Old 03-02-2014, 08:52 PM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
27,165 posts, read 29,655,359 times
Reputation: 26651
Quote:
Originally Posted by HeavenWood View Post
I suppose that's a risk I'd be alright with taking if I'd be willing/able to pay for private school as a backup.
Or move. Which happens quite often now in my city. But you do have lots of time to make a decision when your child is hardly starting school.
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Old 03-07-2014, 03:07 PM
 
2,816 posts, read 5,384,690 times
Reputation: 3758
Quote:
Originally Posted by ABQConvict View Post
The neighborhood I grew up in, an inner-ring suburb of NYC, was blue collar middle-class White, mostly Italian. Now it is becoming professional class Black with lots of Black doctors, teachers, and lawyers moving in.

Where is the outrage?!?!?

(Most people just want decent neighbors who keep up their yard.)
Is "decency" related to income in your book?
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