Uncategorized

How a federal civil rights law failed to work

There’s a good, albeit lengthy, piece over at the non-profit journalism site ProPublica about how the 1968 Fair Housing Act has never been implemented, leaving the U.S. largely segregated by race.

Not only that, but ProPublica found in “Living Apart: How the Government Betrayed a Landmark Civil Rights Law” only two instances in the law’s 40-year history where the federal government withheld funds to communities that violated the Fair Housing Act by refusing to develop affordable housing options, a key component of breaking down the racial segregation in America’s community.

The piece finds a hero in George Romney, father of the presidential candidate Mitt, who was the head of HUD at the time of the law’s passage. Romney tried to leverage federal dollars to push for desegregation in housing, a move that was shut down by President Nixon, according to the ProPublica piece by Nikole Hannah-Jones, a journalist who spent some time earlier in her career reporting for the Raleigh News & Observer.

Read more here:

Over the next four decades, a ProPublica investigation shows, a succession of presidents — Democrat and Republican alike — followed Nixon’s lead, declining to use the leverage of HUD’s billions to fight segregation.

Their reluctance to enforce a law passed by both houses of Congress and repeatedly upheld by the courts reflects a larger political reality. Again and again, attempts to create integrated neighborhoods have foundered in the face of vehement opposition from homeowners.

“The lack of political courage around these issues is stunning,” said Elizabeth Julian, a former senior HUD official. “The failures of fair housing are not just by HUD but by the country.”

Nixon’s vision for America largely came to pass and the costs have been steep. More than 20 years of research has implicated residential segregation in virtually every aspect of racial inequality, from higher unemployment rates for African Americans, to poorer health care, to elevated infant mortality rates and, most of all, to inferior schools.

Check Also

UNC Board of Governors face protest, chooses new board chair and interim president

It was a busy day at the final ...

Top Stories from NCPW

  • News
  • Commentary

North Carolina lawmakers’ latest attempt to insert politics into the judiciary was thwarted Tuesday [...]

A N.C. General Assembly budget mandate to fire certain North Carolina public education officials wou [...]

More than a month after a deadline to correct faulty campaign finance reports, N.C. Sen. Ralph Hise [...]

Even before he dropped the gavel on the Senate Finance Committee meeting, Sen. Jerry Tillman, a noto [...]

State budget bill is the latest and best example It’s long been a matter of public record that North [...]

By now the strategy is familiar – the strategy used by the N.C. General Assembly’s Republican chiefs [...]

The post The devil and the details appeared first on NC Policy Watch. [...]

18---percentage of people in North Carolina who receive health care coverage from Medicaid or the Ch [...]

Featured | Special Projects

NC Budget 2017
The maze of the NC Budget is complex. Follow the stories to follow the money.
Read more
 


 
NC Redistricting 2017
New map, new districts, new lawmakers. Here’s what you need to know about gerrymandering in NC.
Read more
 


 
Trump + North Carolina
In dozens of vitally important areas, policy decisions of the Trump administration are dramatically affecting and altering the lives of North Carolinians. This growing collection of stories summarizes and critiques many of the most important decisions and their impacts.
Read more