Chicago, America's most segregated bi...

Chicago, America's most segregated big city

There are 1792 comments on the Chicago Tribune story from Dec 26, 2008, titled Chicago, America's most segregated big city. In it, Chicago Tribune reports that:

First of three parts The paths taken by Colin Lampark and Rosalyn Bates help illustrate why Chicago is the most racially segregated big city in America.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Chicago Tribune.


Tinley Park, IL

#48 Dec 26, 2008
Jamal wrote:
The one buried statement, "now personal preferences and economics fuel it (segregated living areas)" deserves greater emphasis. There is nothing that bars blacks from moving anywhere in Chicago but they, like people of ethnic backgrounds, like to live among their friends and relatives. The fact is, blacks populate many downtown apartment and condo buildings because they choose to live among people of similar economic stature. A black physician at Northwestern has more in common with white or Asian physicians than he does with people who may live and work in Bronzeville, for example. Take Obama for example. He is more comfortable living in Hyde Park, which is mostly white, than in a black neighborhood. Want to find fault with personal preferences? Start with the pres-elect.
You are exactly right, Jamal.

Batavia, IL

#49 Dec 26, 2008
There's a lot of crime in minority majority neighborhoods, of the life threatening variety.

It's ok to want to live in a safer neighborhood.

I'm a white who grew up scared shitless in the city, I'm never going back to those areas nor am I subjecting my kids to them.

They'll have plenty of interactions with minorities in everyday life just living in America, no reason to subject them to a childhood based mainly in fear.

Glenview, IL

#50 Dec 26, 2008
Nifty Louie wrote:
Don't really see the point. Racism is officially over now. This article seeks to keep it alive. I've been hunting for real estate for the past year and half. Has anyone seen the south side lately? All the new developments down there. they are all cheaper than in equally white neighborhoods. I've seen alot of black people pull out of these nice new condos/houses and into some nice cars. So its bull to say that housing prices end up lower than in white neighborhoods, lack of equity, yaddy yaddy yadda, because the argument to that is that da blacks are achieving a higher standard of living at a lower cost than whites. They should be proud and protective of this. What about jobs, I don't know, they all must be working, because I drive around sometimes in the southside, and I see alot of neighborhoods that look decent and kept up, which means most of em are working, probably for the city. I challenge anyone to visit East St.Louis or North St. Louis. You can write an article about inequity and segregation there, but for Chicago, I say this article bull, and I say this writer should keep out. signing off, Nifty Louie, Milwaukee Ave USA
Nifty, a large number of Blacks have obtained degrees of higher education and working for the city is not an option for them as the city can't pay them what they are worth. We work in coporate america, universities, research institues and elswhere. We are engineers, scientists, doctors, etc. Working for the 'city' is not our only option. And yes, some do live on the south side because this is where they prefer to be. Please broaden your perspective.

Tinley Park, IL

#51 Dec 26, 2008
MTF wrote:
<quoted text> The situation is not going to improve very soon. Once a ghetto always a ghetto there elected officials don't care.I blame the whites also for electing them.
with there elected politicians.I blame the whites for voting for them also.
What the hell are you talking about? Please don't move your lips if you don't understand the subject.
USA is for everyon

San Antonio, TX

#52 Dec 26, 2008
The blacks are the ones that discriminate. For example I flew from Orlando to Chicago Midway on Southwest and my bag was lost. I went to the lost baggage office and was the only white in there. It took 15 minutes before someone would even acknowledge me. They need to stop blaming the “white people”, speak English and get a job!

Would someone please tell me what country “Africa America” is? If they were born in the US they are called “American”. Another example where “they” want to be kept divided.
Nikki Patin

Lansing, IL

#53 Dec 26, 2008
Badger wrote:
A huge "So What?"
As a Caucasian, do you expect me to move to an area with a disprorportionate number of criminal predators despite the fact that many good people also reside therein?
Take your "politically correct diversity" and put it where the sun don't shine". KEEP IT REAL!
I live in Lincoln Park. If anyone can afford the prices and act civilized, move in.
For all you yawning Caucasians who are bored stiff with racism, go be bored and shut up about it. For those of us FORCED to deal with this hateful b.s., it's a problem. I don't expect anyone to do anything except keep their hatefulness to themselves, no matter what their color. I don't need dirty looks, bad jokes, racist remarks and dumb questions. I don't need you to act like it's a personal insult if I'm hanging out or living in a particular neighborhood. Most of all, I don't need people who have no clue about what discrimination or prejudice feel like to complain about how bored they are with the broken heart given to me by racism. I'm sorry you're bored. I wish I could be bored like that, too. If so, maybe I wouldn't walk around the city my family is from and have to shrug off hateful glares from people who don't even know me. I wish all those "bored" with talk of segregation and discrimination could walk one day in my shoes, if only to break the monotony. Wow. Really? All this work to write a comment to say you're bored. You know, there are plenty of places you can volunteer that could help you out with that. Then again, it's not your community (even though we ALL live in America), so what do you care? With all the work to do in the world, how are you bored? Do me a favor. Take your privilege, arrogance and boredom and enjoy it. Stop "boring" me with your apathy.

Chicago, IL

#54 Dec 26, 2008
People like to be with people of their own race, color, religion--people that share their common background and beliefs. The segregation works both ways.

Warren, MI

#56 Dec 26, 2008
What is not stated in many media articles is the higher percentage of blacks in a neighborhood, the higher the crime.Other cultures have returned to their once vibrant communities only to see devestation and killing fields.Where once were communities filled with affordable housing have now been turned into farmland.The ghetto people then cry about the lack of affordable housing.Public housing that should have stood for a hundred years is repeatedly rehabbed every few years or torn down.It is evedent that other cultures do not want to live near the ghetto people.Why should other cultures be forced to live near chaos? If the white liberals want to live in a ghetto neighborhood to enjoy "richness" that is their privlage.
coo coo for coco puffs

Chicago, IL

#57 Dec 26, 2008
Blacks and other poor people are victims of racial discrimination. There is a real system of apertheid, just try to send your child to New Trier or to attend the Kenilworth Union Church. Chances are a black driving in Kenilworth will be stopped by police.
When blacks and the rest of us control the education dollars for our children, say by enacting Milton Friedman's voucher for schools idea, we can honestly say that the Civil rights movement has delivered the real promise of 40 acres and a mule.
In the meantime the protestants of places like KUC and the rich retired teachers in places like Glencoe will protest giving blacks and catholics real freedom of choice. The Civil Rights movement is not finished as long as Kenilworth Union style apatheid is allowed to persist. they act so respectable, but you have to wonder how many of them have roots going back to the Klu Klux Klan.
The real- really

New York, NY

#58 Dec 26, 2008
Badger, As a "caucasian" you are mired in your own ignorance..
tax payer

Chicago, IL

#59 Dec 26, 2008
and lets keep it that way... I dont want shots fired in my quiet white neighborhood.

Tinley Park, IL

#60 Dec 26, 2008
Nikki Patin wrote:
I think you're all deluded. As a mixed-race, Black-identified person who grew up in the South Suburbs BEFORE White flight, I can tell you that it was NOT a nice place to live. I got called the n-word to my face, Aunt Jemima and then got punished for getting upset at being called these slurs while in a public institution of learning. Our family friends, also Black, who lived in South Holland got crosses burned on their lawn and petitions passed to get them to move out. The high school in Lansing, IL, had a Confederate flag for their high school flag until 1993. My family still lives in the same area and I still feel just as uncomfortable because the hostility from most Whites in Chicago (and the surrounding suburbs) has been and still is palpable. I can see it, I can feel it and I hate it. There's nothing civilized, nice or quality about unmitigated hatred. I was an honors student who never had a detention and followed all the rules, only to be ignored by ignorant teachers and harassed by ignorant peers. I've traveled a lot and Chicago is way more uptight about race than NYC, LA, SF, Miami, even Nashville and Atlanta. Sigh. I was born and raised in this city and have lived everywhere, on every side...even the much fabled, but definitely real, East side, where all the ghosts of the steel mills rest. What I hate the most is feeling like I'm a stranger/outsider to the city that gave birth to me, my Mother and my Father. I love Chicago, but I don't think it feels the same way about me.:{
I believe everything you wrote, Nikki. I feel for you. It is changing, though. Yes, there is racism against blacks out there. When I was in Memphis, I seemed to me that the city was more integrated than Chicago, even though I was there for only a short time.
There are many educated black Americans who do not participate in the type of conduct that destroys neighborhoods. What I was saying before, is that those black Americans will move away from these 'bad' neighborhoods as well. I know many of them. They are usually very educated individuals who make good money. Why should they stay behind in a bad neighborhood with high crime simply because they are black? I don't think so. Why should it be their responsibility to 'save the neighborhood'? Simply because they are also black? I don't think so.
15 yrs

Troy, MI

#62 Dec 26, 2008
People will live where they're comfortable - and an attractive neighborhood is one where the individual members of the community take care of that community. If groups want equal services, etc - then it behoovs them to care for what they currently have.
City Girl

Chicago, IL

#63 Dec 26, 2008
I am an African American woman and I live in Old Town. When I moved to Chicago I CHOOSE to live in this area. It had nothing to do with being around "my own people" I find this article quite frankly a load of non sense and just perpetuating the already racial tensions that STILL exist in this country, regardless that our next president is of African decent. The person who wrote this article really needs to find something better to write about. If "white" folks don't want to live in "colored" neighbors, that is their choice. I don't not find this news worthy.

Chicago, IL

#65 Dec 26, 2008
I resent the tone of this article. What these researchers from outside the city have failed to consider is the proximity to downtown as a factor for choosing your new residence. I live in Beverly/Morgan Park, a sucessfully integrated south side neighborhood, but we are 15 miles from the loop, and depend on the Rock Island or the Dan Ryan to get downtown. Lincoln Park and Bronzeville are cooler neighborhoods with easier access to downtown.
Additionally, there was no mention of the many ethnic neighborhoods around the city. These have no relationship to race; they are simply people of common backgrounds choosing the comfort of living with people of similar culture. This can be applied all colors. Why else do neighborhoods have names like Chinatown, Greektown, Little Italy, and many others throughout the city?
Yes, Chicago is certainly segregated, and no one can deny that racial prejudice exists towards all races, but segregation exists for many reasons other than racial prejudice.
Still love Chicago


#66 Dec 26, 2008
Boy, this really got me thinking of about growing up in Chicago and the burbs. I lived in Logan Square until I was 7, we then moved to the western suburbs. It was there that I met "black people" for the first time. I was facinated. I befriended a girl with 6 siblings and spent a lot of time in their home. They were a very gracious family. I learned a lot too. How they had to take care of their hair, which was so different from my straight, blond hair. I also learned that they too got darker in the sun after a day at the pool with them. I loved these people and was very thankful that I got to know their culture from the inside of their home. I met and befriended even more black people at my schools and you know what? Some I liked and some I didn't....just like the white kids! Didn't like all of them either! My schools had kids from all races and if I didn't like some of them, it had nothing to do with their race. After graduating high school, I started working and don't ya know it...there were black people there too! We were such a diversified group. I learned to make collard greens though I didn't acquire a taste for it. But I did try it! Then I met Patrice, what a girl! She became my buddy and we went everywhere together. Her parents were the kindest people. Everyone (no matter what color) was welcome in their home. If you needed to spend the night, mom always had a new toothbrush for you, slippers and a robe. Patrice and I came in late one night and her mom asked if we wanted a snack. We thanked her and said yes and by the time we were done changing clothes, there was a smorgasbord waiting for us. I am thankful for every person I have met of other races. We are all Americans but we all have backgrounds we carry with us in life. I was so priviledged that i learned so much from those who entered my life. We were all middle class Americans living in different neighborhoods but we saw each other as human beings....not steroetypical races. I guess I was blessed.

Tinley Park, IL

#67 Dec 26, 2008
southside al wrote:
I disagree that segregation is caused more be white prejudice vs. black prejudice. I stop for lunch at a bar on the southside in a white area and see black workers stop in all the time. If i as a whit man tried to eat at local bars on the west side or in Englewood, do you think I would be left alone? Not from my experience.
You are wrong. I don't know what experiences you've had but I know that white people can eat just fine in Englewood if they want to. Now the chances of ANYBODY being robbed, shot at, or whatever are increased in Englewood, though.
truth be told

Chicago, IL

#68 Dec 26, 2008
Crime is the big segregator in the City, there are many sociopaths running around the GHETTO.

The Public schools are rotten in Chicago but not for the Connected
butt kissers. That special one for gay kids was a hoot!

Phoenix, AZ

#69 Dec 26, 2008
Citizen wrote:
That is just a very racist article. Very very racist. It is totally harping down on whites. Anything they say in that article about whites, you could say about blacks as well. But they make sure they say: whites this, whites that.
Why do you think that blacks prefer to live in a diverse neighborhood? It is not for the reasons they insinuate in the article. Blacks equally "associate black neighborhoods with high crime and poor quality schools". It's not that "whites have a lower tolerance for blacks and other minorities" but the conduct which usually accompanies them.
It is changing though, it is changing because blacks are changing. You see it is not the color of one's skin but one's conduct. I'm not denying that there aren't some damn racists out there, black and white, but largely it is a thing about conduct.
Excellent & accurate statement!!

Orland Park, IL

#70 Dec 26, 2008
"Research indicates that whites tend to have a lower tolerance for blacks and other minorities. A 2000 study found that whites prefer neighborhoods where they are nearly 60 percent of the population and blacks represent about 17 percent."
Sad, if true. We need real integration to be a truly great nation.

Tell me when this thread is updated:

Subscribe Now Add to my Tracker

Add your comments below

Characters left: 4000

Please note by submitting this form you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Service and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator. Send us your feedback.

Chicago Discussions

Title Updated Last By Comments
News Barack Obama, our next President (Nov '08) 2 min Realtime 1,406,406
News BARACK OBAMA BIRTH CERTIFICATE: Suit contesting... (Jan '09) 2 min JRB 219,829
News Israeli troops begin Gaza pullout as Hamas decl... (Jan '09) 9 min Ize Found 70,849
Topix Chitown Regulars (Aug '09) 13 min Sublime1 103,173
ex chicago police woman 1 hr Chicago girl 4
News Once slow-moving threat, global warming speeds ... (Dec '08) 4 hr litesong 60,674
News 1 shot by police in South Shore 4 hr bozo 1

Chicago Jobs

More from around the web

Personal Finance

Chicago Mortgages