Table of Contents
Poverty in predominantly black or minority communities is a tragic reality some Americans face. Words such as “Ghettos, Hood, etc.” are used to describe and degrade environments bursting with culture, or at one point did. The truth is that Minority communities in Chicago have been thrown into a hole for decades now, and Redlining remains as the cause of that. America is responsible for the exploitation of African Americans and some minorities included in low- income neighborhoods .
Redlining has been around for decades, and intentionally targeted black neighborhoods. Redlining is the a racially discriminatory practice of mortgage lenders lending money to caucasians in order to buy better homes dividing suburban areas and cities into two major categories: the poor category and the privileged areas. purposely exclude minorities in loaning. Began in the late 1800’s -1900’s with Zoning laws following the Plessy vs Ferguson case . Whites usually wouldn’t rent or sell houses to African Americans in suburbs due to restrictions set in place by them.
Latinx migration to Chicago
Latinx immigrants, primarily Mexicans, viewed as lower class citizens when they began to immigrate to Chicago in the early 1920’s . Racism was imposed upon them, racial slurs developed Proper housing was not made available to them, they were exploited Redlining , mortgage , and insurance terms and conditions applied to Latinxs the same way they applied to African Americans. Equity did not exist in terms of whites and people of color. Working immigrants- slum lords took advantage of their situation and desperation. Rented empty, dangerous, housing to Mexicans (primarily). They rented them basements, backyard sheds , and backhouses alongside the black population. Both peoples were however, still overcharged in terms of renting.
The logistics- How Redlining Works
Home Owners’ Loan Corporation (est. 1933) and the Federal Housing Administration (est.1934) developed these redlining programs that helped people own houses and helped in the establishment of suburban living. African Americans didn’t benefit from due to their “unreliable credit”
PROOF: Chicago’s FHA mortgage insurance implementation map is the only surviving map.
The map collected information such as “type of structure, age, overall condition and upkeep, property value and monthly rent (if rented) or value of the home (if owned), number of rooms, an array of information on plumbing, heating, electricity, refrigeration, and kitchen facilities, as well as demographic data including the number, ages, and race of occupants.” Proves the concrete existence of redlining, making it difficult for one to argue that they merely based mortgage loans off of quantitative measures. “One Hundred Years of Land Values in Chicago: The Relationship of the Growth of Chicago to the Rise of Its Land Values, 1830–1933”—that ranked various races and nationalities by order of “desirability.”(Bouie). Written by Hoyt, a chief economist of the Federal Housing Authority Racial maps of American cities had risk levels to each neighborhood. European American neighborhoods ranked lowest risk for mortgage lending, were green on the map. Neighborhoods with working-class Whites were yellow. African American and Mexican American neighborhoods were marked as “Red” areas with the highest risk.
Support for Thesis
Zoning laws implemented in the early 1900’s- a practice in which certain urban areas were divided and given zoning laws that governed and limited their abilities to build affordable housing or apartment buildings. Thus resulting in minorities settling outside of suburbs into less developed, poverty-stricken communities. Another example would be the racial homogeneity present amongst those of the same race executed through residential segregation . families , friends, or acquaintances typically moved nearby their peers. Communities lacked diversity, zoning made it impossible to diversify.
Car Insurance and Banking
Minority neighborhoods in California, Illinois, Texas, and Missouri are charged more for insurance than “white” areas with the same risk factors. 2012-2014, Chicago based insurers were given 20% less in bodily injury and property damage insurance claims than predominantly white communities minority communities paid 51% more money for insurance than the opposed community. Allstate, Geico, and Liberty Mutual charge 30% more on premiums in “Redlined” areas than white neighborhoods with the same accident costs
The MidAmerica Bank lawsuit
The bank acquired over a billion dollars in mortgage loans across their 20 locations in Chicago suburbs. However, only 1% of the money was from loans in African American neighborhoods. Only 2.75% of the total loans were loaned to African American and Hispanic neighborhoods. Banks purposely located themselves in “white” areas in order to purposely make themselves unaccessible to Minority communities.