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Old 07-24-2017, 06:45 PM
 
13,819 posts, read 8,206,965 times
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I have had to ruffle feathers with people on this forum in regards to perspective and race concerning Grand Rapids. Whites in GR live a different reality than blacks in GR....and I have been saying that for a long time. The GR for whites is a lot different than the GR for blacks. One Grand Rapids is booming with opportunity, job growth and positive statistics while the other Grand Rapids is living in economic depression. Its hard to believe that the gap is ever WORSE now than it was 50 years ago. This is why a lot of blacks who get educated LEAVE and don't want to return to live.

Every time I hear people talk about how great Grand Rapids is......I think....yeah....that's true....for whites. Michigan is making a comeback.....but that comeback is largely leaving blacks behind.

50 years after Grand Rapids riot, black poverty worse | WOODTV.com
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Old 07-24-2017, 09:05 PM
 
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What is interesting is that it seems like the metro areas where black folks get ahead are select military areas. Most metro areas where blacks have a higher median household income than whites or have a middle class median household income are those with a strong or substantial military presence. Here are some areas with at least a visible black population that come to mind: Fairbanks Metro Area Income and Careers - USA.com™

Anchorage Metro Area Income and Careers - USA.com™

Watertown, Fort Drum Micro Area Income and Careers - USA.com™

Sierra Vista, Douglas Micro Area Income and Careers - USA.com™

Poughkeepsie, Newburgh, Middletown Metro Area Income and Careers - USA.com™ (Now a part of the NYC metro area and was one of the most integrated top 100 metros before becoming a part of that area)

Alamogordo Micro Area Income and Careers - USA.com™

Washington, Arlington, Alexandria Metro Area Income and Careers - USA.com™

East Stroudsburg Micro Area Income and Careers - USA.com™

Elizabethtown Metro Area Income and Careers - USA.com™

There may be some others, but those are some that come to mind and why perhaps looking into these areas to start businesses may be something to think about.

Here is a list of incorporated places and census designated places(CDP's) by black median household income(2010-2014 info): Michigan Median Black Household Income City Rank Based on ACS 2010-2014 data

By school district: Michigan Median Black Household Income School District Rank Based on ACS 2010-2014 data
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Old 07-24-2017, 11:14 PM
 
Location: Niceville, FL
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Atlanta has a reputation as a place where blacks have more opportunities to get ahead.

As for the military, it's not perfect, but it is able to pretty much change policy on a dime when civil rights norms change, and then expect the entire chain of command to enforce the new normal pretty much overnight. In places where the base is the big player in town and a main economic engine, the base can, barring really strong prejudice in the community, often push those new norms out into the civilian world nearby.

These days, I live in an Air Force town. The local school district has the odd designation of being the first one in Florida to desegregate, even though we're up north in the 'Southern' part of the state. But the civilian locals, such that they were, were largely transplants themselves and weren't true believers in George Wallace's politics like they were over on the Alabama side of the state line. After Brown but before additional court orders, the Air Force went to the school district and told the school district their black service members didn't like sending their kids to segregated schools after they'd been in unsegregated schools Up North or DoD schools abroad, the local school board went along with it and desegregated early because the Air Force gets what it wants in this town, and the local boys football and basketball spent a few years winning 50% of their scheduled games by forfeit because other schools in the region didn't want to play a 'mixed' team.

Same goes for how base and local businesses interact when it comes to encouraging civil society. The local base has their blacklisted businesses list and the folks in uniform get in deep trouble for violating that blacklist. Usually it's a bar or restaurant that gets banned because there's too much violence there or excessive drug activity, but I've seen them list businesses over civil rights violations- JAG found that an appliance store was charging Hispanic service members higher prices than white service members. (After it went on the banned list, the store closed maybe two months later)
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Old 07-25-2017, 11:21 AM
 
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^You could technically take out Grand Rapids and put many other cities in its place. What "Rust Belt" cities/areas need to keep in mind is that manufacturing employment peaked in 1979 and given the changes in demographics within these cities, there should have been a proactive versus reactive plan in place in order to put its citizens in position to move into a different economy. This may mean adjustments within the school system like early middle college academic programs or even an adjustment in school district set up, in which the latter has played a part in how Southern metros have lowered taxes and integrated its schools due to Federal pressure. So, I think that governmental structure also plays a part in this as well.
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Old 07-25-2017, 12:09 PM
 
Location: Louisville
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Indentured Servant View Post

That having been said, the rise in black poverty is the GR area is related to black dependence on good paying factory jobs.....that have largely dried up over the last quarter century. Its not an increase in racism....but a changing economy and world. Granted, the history of racism evolved the condition of dependence on these type of jobs to rise from poverty, however, the absence of such jobs now is pushing more blacks into poverty.
Do you think part of the widening gap between white and black residents in GR has to do with the fact that so much of the of the educated black middle class is leaving the city for places that are much more welcoming? At the same time the average new white resident tends to be more educated and upper middle class. Based on what I can tell it would seem to some extent this is a statistic of attrition. Rather than the existing black resident base actually having shifting economic circumstances, the portion of their demographic that could bring those numbers up is leaving. What remains behind is largely the black resident base that is unable to leave due to circumstance no?

I know the current leadership within city government is putting quite a large focus on making the city more welcoming for minorities. It would seem that if the city were somehow able to stem the exodus of the black middle class, it would raise the profile of the community and make it more welcoming for all. After posting with you for the last few years my guess is that you will tell me it's too little too late. That the city has been negatively branded by the sins of the last several decades and it's an almost insurmountable problem. Which would be a sentiment that is definitely reflected in the stats

Last edited by mjlo; 07-25-2017 at 12:22 PM..
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Old 07-25-2017, 12:59 PM
 
13,819 posts, read 8,206,965 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mjlo View Post
Do you think part of the widening gap between white and black residents in GR has to do with the fact that so much of the of the educated black middle class is leaving the city for places that are much more welcoming? At the same time the average new white resident tends to be more educated and upper middle class. Based on what I can tell it would seem to some extent this is a statistic of attrition. Rather than the existing black resident base actually getting poorer, the portion of their demographic that could bring those numbers up is leaving. What remains behind is largely the black resident base that is unable to leave due to circumstance no?

I know the current leadership within city government is putting quite a large focus on making the city more welcoming for minorities. It would seem that if the city were somehow able to stem the exodus of the black middle class, it would raise the profile of the community and make it more welcoming for all. After posting with you for the last few years my guess is that you will tell me it's too little too late. That the city has been negatively branded by the sins of the last several decades and it's an almost insurmountable problem. Which would be a sentiment that is definitely reflected in the stats
That is absolutely true! Part of the reason is that educated blacks tend to get out of dodge and don't want to come back to live. Poor blacks tend to leave also but often times find that life for the uneducated is not great anywhere. I should not say the "uneducated", but rather, people who lack a marketable skill set, training or degree. Lots of educated people are working low paying jobs because their discipline is over saturated. Anyway, many of these type of people leave....but end up coming back home because if they are going to be poor and struggling they may as well do it where they have the most family and friends.

This is not physics, but like Newton said: An object in motion will tend to stay in motion unless or until acted upon by an opposite force. The black condition of inequality is a motion set in place long, long ago. It really is not dependent upon current propulsion (racism) to keep the motion going. It just depends on there not being enough counter forces to offset the motion and displacement. Hence, what has happened over the last decade or more is a reduction in the counter forces, like Affirmative Action and the willingness to target and tailor a solution, via policy and programs like what used to exist before the Reagan Administration and additionally, programs like CETA.

Being color conscious is the way racism worked to create the momentum of racial inequality. Blacks were targeted for discrimination. You cannot, therefore, be color blind when trying to apply a solution. It just will not work. Yet, that is what America has evolved to. It says it wants to fix these racial problems.....but how can it do so without looking at race? America wants to be color blind in coming up with a solution to "black inequality"? It's nonsensical. However, anytime you try to use race as a criteria to implement programs or policy.......it becomes "reverse discrimination".

There is really not much the city of Grand Rapids can do in a vacuum.....because its really a national problem. Businesses ultimately run things.....not government. The leaders of Amway, Meijer and a few others have way more control over what happens in the GR area than the Mayor or City council. Look at the impact the Illitch family and Dan Gilbert is having in Detroit. These corporations could make a huge difference by targeting and investing in the "black community". However....that is not the purpose of corporations. Corporation only invest directly where they see an ROI. America, in general, does not believe there is significant ROI in blacks (unless for sports and entertainment....to invest in the black mind is seen as a waste of time because they think it to be inferior naturally)....and that is plain to see. Blacks do not get invested in....they get given handouts. Handouts do not work....and not investing does not work.....hence.....the motion continues.

Think about this. If America, for some reason, made a pledge to dominate the 100 and 200 meter sprints at the next 5 Olympics....how much would America invest in its white athletes? Dollars would be pouring into programs that implicitly targeted blacks. Why? Because that is who America believes in when it comes to that type of stuff. America might not realize it, but it does this for education too. Blacks are not traditionally seen, in this society, as being intelligent. Hence, society really does not invest in black intellect and think such spending is a waste of dollars. Both examples become self fulfilling prophecies, unfortunately.

Last edited by Indentured Servant; 07-25-2017 at 01:55 PM..
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Old 07-25-2017, 09:27 PM
 
Location: Grand Rapids Metro
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Indentured Servant View Post
Yes. Also, cities have to make themselves attractive to businesses to keep and lure businesses. That means that cities have to create master plans to attract the best and brightest young minds. The model of what the best and brightest minds wants seemed to be defined by what the young white demographic wants. Right now young whites covet a more urban lifestyle...but not urban like the experience and culture of minorities who have largely occupied the core urban centers for the last half century. Thus, marketing is largely aimed at what appeals to whites.

Marketers understand human psychology. They also study demographics and know what appeals and sells to each demographic. I mean....they have to know this to make money. Hence, you do not have to create a city that is explicitly restrictive to non-whites.... that would be bad optics....plus illegal. However, what you do is that you create a city that appeals to the white demographic by catering to that demographics interest. See this Freudian mistake in Detroit. Mostly-White Ad Declaring ‘See Detroit Like We Do’ Faces Backlash « CBS Detroit

In other words.....people do not see a problem because they do not see anything stopping non-whites from liking and enjoying what white people like and enjoy. It's akin to watching someones favorite home movie and them not understanding that it might not be that appealing to us. Blacks in GR are so poor relative to whites......that blacks can also be pushed out on the bases of class.

That having been said, the rise in black poverty is the GR area is related to black dependence on good paying factory jobs.....that have largely dried up over the last quarter century. Its not an increase in racism....but a changing economy and world. Granted, the history of racism evolved the condition of dependence on these type of jobs to rise from poverty, however, the absence of such jobs now is pushing more blacks into poverty.

People do not like hearing this realities about Grand Rapids. They just want to paint this positive picture....that represents how they seen things. I also see that world and do not disagree with it. I cannot tell you the number of times I have described GR from a "black perspective" (not that the black perspective is universal and monolithic) and people shot me down saying it was not true....that GR was a GREAT place....not like Detroit.
Never mind. I once used to tell everyone what my viewpoint was and then denigrate them if they didn't agree with me. I think I used to do that. I'm much better now. I swear.

Last edited by magellan; 07-25-2017 at 09:39 PM..
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