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Old 10-11-2019, 01:13 PM
 
Location: Philadelphia Pa
667 posts, read 453,089 times
Reputation: 659

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Quote:
Originally Posted by kyb01 View Post
Our crime free lives( yours, mine( rest of my family's), PhilliesPhan's ( who shows up sometimes) means nothing to anyone else posting here. That's my conclusion.
Well of course they don't. Do you honestly think we should take anecdotal evidence from an N of 3 when there are robust and factual statistics about the same topic? That doesn't make any sense at all.

 
Old 10-11-2019, 02:05 PM
 
Location: Germantown, Philadelphia
6,210 posts, read 3,048,381 times
Reputation: 3932
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pennsport View Post
Well of course they don't. Do you honestly think we should take anecdotal evidence from an N of 3 when there are robust and factual statistics about the same topic? That doesn't make any sense at all.
I refer you to my post upthread citing the Mark Twain quote. Once again, stats can conceal as much as they reveal.

Here are some for you:

--Germantown (using ZIP code 19144, which includes a piece of East Falls and doesn't cover the part between Chew and Stenton avenues, as a proxy) has a median household income in the upper $20k range. That makes it a poor neighborhood. But can you name me another poor neighborhood in this city where five percent of the residents make more than $125k a year? (I can tell you where these people live too, and it's not necessarily in the East Falls part of the zip code.)

--The median household income in my own Census tract, which straddles Chew Avenue and thus the ZIP code boundary (I live on the other side of it), is even lower: about $21k. About a block to the west of Chew Avenue and one and a half to the south of Chelten, you enter an area of large freestanding Victorians and Colonials. Houses in this pocket have recently sold for $500k and up. You can't get MHI data for this block group for some reason (I'm guessing it's because there might not be enough households in the block group to prevent individual identification based on the figure), but I know this is where the middle-class blacks featured in this WHYY report from earlier this year live. I'm acquainted with one who doesn't appear in this story but whom I've written about; he's a well-known intellectual who owns a wildly popular coffee shop/bookstore in the heart of Germantown - and drives a Maybach.

I've also met at least three white residents of this area and a fourth who lives on a block of two-story rowhouses just outside it. That last person ain't poor either; given what she told me she did (and her statement that she's "overworked and underpaid"), I'd guess she makes anywhere from what I make to about $20k above it.

Yes, yes, the plural of anecdote is not data. But there are things about communities and places that the data don't tell you. The best way to learn those things is through direct observation. That's why sociologists don't base their research on number-crunching. You data-worshippers should try it sometime.
 
Old 10-11-2019, 02:28 PM
 
Location: Germantown, Philadelphia
6,210 posts, read 3,048,381 times
Reputation: 3932
Quote:
Originally Posted by DXBtoFL View Post
Well, unfortunately, that was the point of the thread to start with. Look at the OP's first few posts. Here's the first one for a reminder:

Hey Philly Friends,

We are relocating to the Philadelphia area. My husband will be commuting to Suburban Station daily and we have 3 children under 6 who will be entering the public school system.

My question to you is:

Q. Of all the towns, townships and school districts in and around the Greater Philadelphia Area, where would YOU choose to live if you had $650,000 to spend on a house? Why?

Thanks!


Her second post mentioned Wayne and Berwyn at the top of her list.

End of thread /

At least that should have been the end of the thread, but it got derailed because a bunch of people started promoting Mount Airy, which is about as much use to the OP as a chocolate teapot.

I'm sure OP by now is happily living in her Wayne/Berwyn/Paoli/Malvern colonial on a cul de sac and no amount of judging or encouraging her to "think" differently is going to make a single iota of a difference.
And you glossed over this passage in a later reply from the OP:

Quote:
We are white and are concerned with the kids attending a school that is all white. Some sort of diversity is definitely preferred and if it can't be found in the area we choose, we want to be sure there is at least an acceptance and understanding of diversity and multiculturalism. We have no interest in landing in a township that has racist under currents!
NewtownBucks copped wise to that passage and responded:

Quote:
If diversity is a critical issue and you are coming from living in the city in Toronto and want that same sort of diversity, you're going to find it ... in the city. I don't know anything about Toronto's suburbs, but I'm guessing they also don't have the same sort of diversity that you are accustomed to in the city. Just a thought.

As far as other suburban locations, Newtown and Bucks County check pretty much every one of your boxes except, again, being 80% white. There's no perceptible racial tension here, though, that's I've felt.
(emphasis added)

And that's why PHL10 said, accurately:

Quote:
people throw around Mt. Airy a lot even when it doesn't fit but man, does the OPs priorities ever scream "Mt. Airy!".
If the OP wants true diversity and a nice house with a decent yard (though the OP didn't specify that, let's assume it for sake of argument; after all, the OP has kids who will need outdoor space to play in) for $650k max, then the search will lead them to in-city neighborhoods.

I can think of at least two good city public schools that have very diverse student bodies: Albert M. Greenfield and Gen. George A. McCall. The OP might find some suitable houses in Fitler Square (in the Greenfield catchment), but finding one in the McCall catchment will be a tough nut to crack.

Odds are way better in Mt. Airy. Chances are that the OP might find a decent private school they can afford, can enroll in one of the public charters up this way (Wissahickon Charter has a new second campus in Mt. Airy's southeast corner), but the reason I jumped in here was to say that - statistics notwithstanding - it might indeed be possible for someone like the OP to get a decent education for their children in a local public school. If those two parents who collared me at First Presbyterian Germantown could, why can't anyone else? Think about that for a minute, and forget the numbers when you do.
 
Old 10-11-2019, 02:34 PM
 
Location: Germantown, Philadelphia
6,210 posts, read 3,048,381 times
Reputation: 3932
Oh, and:

Speaking of "racist undercurrents," maybe some of you read this cover feature that ran in the November 2015 issue of PhillyMag?

Racial Profiling on the Main Line | Philadelphia Magazine

(I met the author when we both took a Landmark Forum course together. He played a key role in putting me on the path that led to my getting hired as the mag's first African-American member of the full-time editorial staff in the month that article was published.)

I'll bet few of you criticizing us three here did, if any of you did at all.

Let me state here that I have nothing against the Main Line. It has two of the coolest, most walkable suburban downtowns I've run across anywhere, and I've made some friends there and at least one fan who lives in Gladwyne. But I harbor few illusions about racial diversity and harmony being universal or widespread out that way. I do give the Lower Merion School District points for effort, however. (One of Lower Merion's seven township commissioners is African-American; he represnts South Ardmore, the township's historically black section.)
 
Old 10-11-2019, 03:14 PM
 
Location: Philadelphia
348 posts, read 103,573 times
Reputation: 236
Quote:
Originally Posted by MarketStEl View Post
I refer you to my post upthread citing the Mark Twain quote. Once again, stats can conceal as much as they reveal.

Here are some for you:

--Germantown (using ZIP code 19144, which includes a piece of East Falls and doesn't cover the part between Chew and Stenton avenues, as a proxy) has a median household income in the upper $20k range. That makes it a poor neighborhood. But can you name me another poor neighborhood in this city where five percent of the residents make more than $125k a year? (I can tell you where these people live too, and it's not necessarily in the East Falls part of the zip code.)

--The median household income in my own Census tract, which straddles Chew Avenue and thus the ZIP code boundary (I live on the other side of it), is even lower: about $21k. About a block to the west of Chew Avenue and one and a half to the south of Chelten, you enter an area of large freestanding Victorians and Colonials. Houses in this pocket have recently sold for $500k and up. You can't get MHI data for this block group for some reason (I'm guessing it's because there might not be enough households in the block group to prevent individual identification based on the figure), but I know this is where the middle-class blacks featured in this WHYY report from earlier this year live. I'm acquainted with one who doesn't appear in this story but whom I've written about; he's a well-known intellectual who owns a wildly popular coffee shop/bookstore in the heart of Germantown - and drives a Maybach.

I've also met at least three white residents of this area and a fourth who lives on a block of two-story rowhouses just outside it. That last person ain't poor either; given what she told me she did (and her statement that she's "overworked and underpaid"), I'd guess she makes anywhere from what I make to about $20k above it.

Yes, yes, the plural of anecdote is not data. But there are things about communities and places that the data don't tell you. The best way to learn those things is through direct observation. That's why sociologists don't base their research on number-crunching. You data-worshippers should try it sometime.
If median household income is below $30k, the crime rate is high and the schools score poorly on standardized measures the statistics individually and in combination paint a consistent picture. Mt. Airy has higher median income than that, but it's a pretty uneven neighborhood for the most part. And the schools perform poorly.

Parents with $650k home budgets and school age children are not going to be interested. Not when they can live in safe neighborhoods with strong schools and not have to worry if their kids are in danger playing in the local park.

Your anecdotes point to some outliers in the area. Every data set has them. Outliers do not define a data set.
 
Old 10-11-2019, 08:01 PM
 
Location: Philadelphia, PA
697 posts, read 284,738 times
Reputation: 1008
Quote:
Originally Posted by TownDweller View Post
If median household income is below $30k, the crime rate is high and the schools score poorly on standardized measures the statistics individually and in combination paint a consistent picture. Mt. Airy has higher median income than that, but it's a pretty uneven neighborhood for the most part. And the schools perform poorly.

Parents with $650k home budgets and school age children are not going to be interested. Not when they can live in safe neighborhoods with strong schools and not have to worry if their kids are in danger playing in the local park.

Your anecdotes point to some outliers in the area. Every data set has them. Outliers do not define a data set.
I don’t know about this particular poster, but there are many upper middle class folks in Germantown with a similar budget, who instead of spending in fancy suburban neighborhoods, invest in a more modest, yet charming house in Germantown and send their kids to one of the many acclaimed private schools in the area. There are some great public charter options in this part of town, food And jeeze, the parks here are great and perfectly child friendly. I hope no parents leave their young children unattended at parks, regardless of city/neighborhood.
 
Old 10-11-2019, 08:05 PM
 
10,265 posts, read 5,934,396 times
Reputation: 3628
Quote:
Originally Posted by MarketStEl View Post
I refer you to my post upthread citing the Mark Twain quote. Once again, stats can conceal as much as they reveal.

Here are some for you:

--Germantown (using ZIP code 19144, which includes a piece of East Falls and doesn't cover the part between Chew and Stenton avenues, as a proxy) has a median household income in the upper $20k range. That makes it a poor neighborhood. But can you name me another poor neighborhood in this city where five percent of the residents make more than $125k a year? (I can tell you where these people live too, and it's not necessarily in the East Falls part of the zip code.)

--The median household income in my own Census tract, which straddles Chew Avenue and thus the ZIP code boundary (I live on the other side of it), is even lower: about $21k. About a block to the west of Chew Avenue and one and a half to the south of Chelten, you enter an area of large freestanding Victorians and Colonials. Houses in this pocket have recently sold for $500k and up. You can't get MHI data for this block group for some reason (I'm guessing it's because there might not be enough households in the block group to prevent individual identification based on the figure), but I know this is where the middle-class blacks featured in this WHYY report from earlier this year live. I'm acquainted with one who doesn't appear in this story but whom I've written about; he's a well-known intellectual who owns a wildly popular coffee shop/bookstore in the heart of Germantown - and drives a Maybach.

I've also met at least three white residents of this area and a fourth who lives on a block of two-story rowhouses just outside it. That last person ain't poor either; given what she told me she did (and her statement that she's "overworked and underpaid"), I'd guess she makes anywhere from what I make to about $20k above it.

Yes, yes, the plural of anecdote is not data. But there are things about communities and places that the data don't tell you. The best way to learn those things is through direct observation. That's why sociologists don't base their research on number-crunching. You data-worshippers should try it sometime.
You do realize, right, that this won't matter to people on this board who don't give a rat's ass about what you or me are trying to convey.
 
Old 10-11-2019, 09:42 PM
 
Location: Germantown, Philadelphia
6,210 posts, read 3,048,381 times
Reputation: 3932
Quote:
Originally Posted by TownDweller View Post
If median household income is below $30k, the crime rate is high and the schools score poorly on standardized measures the statistics individually and in combination paint a consistent picture. Mt. Airy has higher median income than that, but it's a pretty uneven neighborhood for the most part. And the schools perform poorly.

Parents with $650k home budgets and school age children are not going to be interested. Not when they can live in safe neighborhoods with strong schools and not have to worry if their kids are in danger playing in the local park.

Your anecdotes point to some outliers in the area. Every data set has them. Outliers do not define a data set.
No, but when it comes to actual human behavior, the outliers point to possibilities others refuse to see. As I said before, if these people can do it, why can't anyone else? The stats don't answer that question, and the one I give it is: Because they don't even want to try. It's my assessment that the effort required may not be all that great.

It's like choosing to send your kids to a school where they will be in the minority if you're white. Most white parents blanch at the idea. Changing this mindset is definitely an uphill battle, but there are people out there working to do just that. (If you play the video on this site's home page, you will probably think this group hopelessly naive, or overly idealistic, or too squishy-liberal, or something like that. But it does require some conscious action and a willingness to question one's own assumptions.)

This is somewhat personal for me, because as a child, I "desegregated" an all-white grade school across town from me. In a sort of mirror-image version of what you describe, my mother had me transferred out of district the moment I was old enough for kindergarten in order to enroll me in a school that would be better than the overcrowded neighborhood school I would have attended. (The school district began busing students from that very school to the one I attended starting in third grade because it was so overcrowded. I went from being the only black kid to part of 1/3 of the class instantly.I also ceased to be seen as Them by some of the kids who saw me that way prior to this simply by virtue of my already being there.)

And sorry to bring up race again here, but I might point out that all of us counter-arguing your points are black. I suspect neither you nor anyone else who's arguing the conventional wisdom is. Maybe we do know something you don't because you put all your faith (yes, faith) in the data while we use lived experience as well?
 
Old 10-12-2019, 12:15 AM
 
Location: Philadelphia Pa
667 posts, read 453,089 times
Reputation: 659
Quote:
Originally Posted by MarketStEl View Post
No, but when it comes to actual human behavior, the outliers point to possibilities others refuse to see. As I said before, if these people can do it, why can't anyone else? The stats don't answer that question, and the one I give it is: Because they don't even want to try. It's my assessment that the effort required may not be all that great.

It's like choosing to send your kids to a school where they will be in the minority if you're white. Most white parents blanch at the idea. Changing this mindset is definitely an uphill battle, but there are people out there working to do just that. (If you play the video on this site's home page, you will probably think this group hopelessly naive, or overly idealistic, or too squishy-liberal, or something like that. But it does require some conscious action and a willingness to question one's own assumptions.)

This is somewhat personal for me, because as a child, I "desegregated" an all-white grade school across town from me. In a sort of mirror-image version of what you describe, my mother had me transferred out of district the moment I was old enough for kindergarten in order to enroll me in a school that would be better than the overcrowded neighborhood school I would have attended. (The school district began busing students from that very school to the one I attended starting in third grade because it was so overcrowded. I went from being the only black kid to part of 1/3 of the class instantly.I also ceased to be seen as Them by some of the kids who saw me that way prior to this simply by virtue of my already being there.)

And sorry to bring up race again here, but I might point out that all of us counter-arguing your points are black. I suspect neither you nor anyone else who's arguing the conventional wisdom is. Maybe we do know something you don't because you put all your faith (yes, faith) in the data while we use lived experience as well?
Good grief. Sandy and Karen - you two are exhausting. Self promotion is the worst of traits. Pull it together.
 
Old 10-12-2019, 05:15 AM
 
Location: Philadelphia
348 posts, read 103,573 times
Reputation: 236
Quote:
Originally Posted by MarketStEl View Post
And sorry to bring up race again here, but I might point out that all of us counter-arguing your points are black. I suspect neither you nor anyone else who's arguing the conventional wisdom is. Maybe we do know something you don't because you put all your faith (yes, faith) in the data while we use lived experience as well?
This really is exhausting. I can't speak for all of the 'conventional wisdom' posters here, but I do also have lived experiences as well as you that guide me.

I am looking at suburban real estate right now. Although I do not and will not have children, school ratings are one of the important factors in my search. Why? Because I am most likely to find shared values in areas with strong schools. And because I want to ensure my property value will continue to be strong.

For many of us, it really is not about race, however much you continue to maintain that it is.
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