(Chip Somodevilla / Staff / Getty Images)
Former first lady Michelle Obama just can’t seem to get past her resentment for the despicable racism she experienced in her youth.
Michelle grew up on the southside of Chicago at a time when many prosperous white families moved away to the quiet suburbs while declining property values, poverty, and rising crime in the inner city took root.
White flight was partially driven by economic factors and a desire for the suburban lifestyle, but regrettably, racist attitudes and fear of black people were motivating factors as well.
During an appearance at the Obama Foundation Summit on Tuesday, former First Lady Michelle Obama recounted her experience in the 1960s, reminding white people in attendance, “Y’all were running from us, and you’re still running.”
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Ironically, the former First Lady’s comments come at a time when white people are increasingly moving back into majority-black neighborhoods in the inner city. Middle class and lower-middle-class Caucasians are purchasing rundown properties that have been abandoned and rehabbing them with low-interest loans from the government intended to combat “urban blight.”
As a result, property values are on the rise, tax revenues are on the rise, schools are seeing increased funding, and restaurants, retailers, and grocery stores are thriving in those areas once again.
As property values rise, minority families are moving OUT of the inner city and relocating to older homes and neighborhoods in the suburbs where housing is more affordable.
The phenomenon has been dubbed “black flight” and is driven entirely by economic factors rather than race. In point of fact, t is preceded by white families choosing to live amongst people of color in less than desirable neighborhoods that promise future investment potential.
Yes, the accelerating pace of gentrification in these neighborhoods is arguably unfortunate from the standpoint of long-term diversity, but it also demonstrates that the racist attitudes and ignorant fears of previous generations are becoming increasingly less common. That’s something to acknowledge and celebrate too, Mrs. Obama.
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