Is it okay to generalize about blacks and Hispanics?

The Oregonian has a tradition, each year, of bellyaching about racism in the Portland rental market. I’ve written about this before, but with their latest installment of lies and deception, I feel they must be answered.
This year’s drivel, titled “Fair housing action fails to match bold words” appeared May 8th, and starts (on the front page):

Portland leaders pledged bold action and clear results in 2011 after undercover testing suggested that African American and Latino renters face frequent discrimination.
Yet four years later, with a new report on the persistence of bias, City Hall has offered more shrug than shriek.
Results of new testing, released in April, show landlords gave whites preferential treatment over black and Latino testers in 12 of 25 cases, or 48 percent. That compares with 64 percent of 50 cases four years ago. The samples are too small for meaningful comparisons or conclusions, and they don’t prove discrimination occurred.

The article continues (on page A11), under the subheading “Housing” and “All this rhetoric about equity”:

Portland, with high rents and rock-bottom vacancy rates, can be an unkind place for anyone seeking housing. But residents of color are hit hardest, as another city report on housing, released in mid-April, illustrates.
White residents earning the median income for their group can afford to rent in wide swaths of the city, according to the city Housing Bureau’s “State of Housing in Portland” analysis. But Latinos earning the median for their group have only a few pockets of affordability. African Americans at their median are priced out entirely.
On top of that, the new testing results add another uncomfortable reality for America’s whitest big city: more-subtle barriers because of skin-color.

I have a hunch that if the Oregonian did anonymous interviews with landlords, they’d discover that their aversion to black/Hispanic tenants has nothing to do with skin-color. Maybe, in their minds, such an interview would look something like this:

The Oregonian: So Mr. Landlord, you were caught discriminating against African American/Hispanic tenants. You can’t deny it; you were caught red-handed. How would you defend yourself? Why do you discriminate against African-Americans and Hispanics?
Anonymous landlord: I’m so ashamed of what I did… I’ve been thinking of taking my own life! My own family has disowned me, and I’m now a pariah in my own community (muffled sobs). Why did I do it? It’s their skin-color… Yes, I realize that African-Americans/Hispanics are just like me in every way – except for that damn skin-color. Every time I see that color, it makes me angry, so that I want to curse and break things. Not only that, but it clashes with the color scheme of the apartments.

No folks, race and color are NOT synonymous. I’ve already written about this here and here. But the Oregonian knows that if they repeat a lie often enough, people will believe it. Recently, while at work, a young coworker blurted out that race is just “skin-color.” I instantly corrected him, and told him there are many racial differences besides skin-color. Is what I said “work-safe?” It’s hard to see how one can get in trouble for simply stating an obvious scientific fact, without any malice. We’ve got to use the freedom of speech we have left, if we’re to maintain it at all. It’s our responsibility to educate ignorant people whenever the opportunity arises.
Should we generalize about racial groups? Some people might call this “stereotyping.” The Oregonian has no problem categorizing blacks and Hispanics as “victims” due to the fact that their median incomes are lower than that of whites. Landlords apparently do the same regarding crime rates. Blacks and Hispanics have much higher crime rates than whites or Asians. We don’t hear about housing discrimination against Asians. Why is this? Obviously, it’s because Asians have even lower crime rates than whites – so there’s no reason to discriminate against them. Blacks and Hispanics also tend to have lower credit scores than do whites and Asians.
Due to “affirmative action” policies, some blacks and Hispanics, who would not otherwise be “middle class,” are now counted among America’s middle class – but, since they were artificially placed there (through discriminatory policies/ affirmative action), culturally speaking, they have not acquired middle class values. So, even though their income is high enough to afford better apartments, they’re more likely to trash said apartments.
There was a time in my life when I was a landlord. I had troublesome tenants of all races, but the track record for blacks and Hispanics was noticeably worse. For the record, I never had a problem with their skin-color. There can be little doubt that my own experiences are shared by Portland area landlords as well – but the keepers of Leftist orthodoxy are not willing to speak to them.
In real life, we must learn to recognize patterns in order to survive. The very fact that we are here today is testimony to the fact that our ancestors mastered this skill. Every time a landlord is confronted with a prospective tenant, he must navigate a sea of unknowns. He can conduct background checks, contact references and confirm work histories – but these can only help minimize the unknowns; they don’t eliminate them entirely. He can never know, in advance, if this prospective tenant is a drug-user, if he’s prone to fits of violence, if he listens to loud music, leaves crumbs all over the house or has unsavory friends. A landlord has little choice but to play the odds – and these odds are better if he sticks with white and Asian tenants.
If the Oregonian can generalize about whites, blacks and Hispanics regarding income, then landlords can certainly generalize when it comes to overall criminality and responsibility.
When it comes to picking tenants, landlords have a lot at stake, but words are cheap for the Oregonian. Their campaigning will end up costing other people a lot of money, and possibly even their lives. Even as landlords suffer bankruptcy, or must bury their loved ones, the Oregonian staff will pat itself on its collective back for fighting for “social justice.”

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11 Responses to Is it okay to generalize about blacks and Hispanics?

  1. missattempts says:

    Did you ever hear the expression: “Don’t raise the bridge, lower the
    water?” That should be America’s motto for the last 60 years.
    The cause of misfortune that people experience is everybody’s fault
    but their own. It’s always outside forces that are responisble for failure.
    So “Rube Goldberg” solutions are proposed. Ridiculious, unworkable,
    snake oil cures.
    The animals that believe in excuses and do-gooderism, are going to
    out breed the excelors . The result will be South African genocide for
    the white and the dragging off of the white woman screaming.

  2. juno says:

    There is no such thing as middle class in USA, only people that earn more money.

    • jewamongyou says:

      I’ve had plenty of experience with lower-class whites, both in the South and here in Portland. I’ve also had some experience with upper-class whites. Most of my experience is with middle-class people. In my opinion, there are clear cultural differences between the groups. Perhaps I should write a separate post about the distinctions, though I’m sure plenty has already been written about it.

  3. Lon Spector says:

    It’s always someone else’s fault.

  4. CS says:

    Portland should make it obligatory on landlords to accept as a tenant whoever is first to offer to take the accommodation, then there could be no discrimination. The same sort of rule could apply to everything: university entrance; stuff you buy (excuse me madam, no picking out the bad apples, just take the bruised ones as they come); marriage partners; business partners (hey man, I’m gonna be your partner in this very profitable business you got here), etc. Under such rules, civilization would not last more than about five minutes, but everything’s going to Hell anyhow, so why not get it over with? Bravo, Portland.

  5. The equality axiom is the basis of political correctness. Everyone is equal. Statistics be damned.
    As you state, Black applicants tend do be different in social attitudes. So, a well behaved Black engineer might be given preference to a white hooligan or Hells Angel.
    Certainly races are also different in criminality and self control. If you can choose between swearing 19 year old Blacks in hoodies with low hanging pants, or a group of old white ladies, you are supposed to ignore common sense, and crime statistics and assume they are both equally safe neighbors.
    So, in a normal world without race laws, it would be legitimate to pick people who are likely to create less problems, less crime. But you can not do this in the USA.
    This is why white cites, white suburbs tip to become black crime dens, like Ferguson or Detroit. It starts slowly, and then accelerates.
    I am just writing a series about how the Swedish forcible rape epidemic could have been avoided, had they not invited North Africans and Muslims.
    Diversity. This is quite similar to the situation of Portland. But it is worse. Unlike Black Americans, who already are in the country, the Black Africans are invited needlessly.

    • jewamongyou says:

      I’m pretty sure that when they do these discrimination audits, they keep everything equal except race. The problem, for a landlord, with hiring decent-looking black tenants, is that they might have just dressed up, and changed their mannerisms, for show and in order to get the apartment. Also, even if this particular black tenant is a fine, clean and responsible fellow, odds are that his family members and their friends will include some slum-slime. Like so many other things in life, one must play the odds and hope for the best.

    • Jack Fitzgerald says:

      As you imply, people are not equal. No one is equal to another, identical twins included. People are not commodities. Some are smart. Some are charming, industrious, healthy, good-looking.
      What we are supposed to be, is equal Before The Law. That doesn’t mean that all violations of a law should be treated the same. Maybe you ran that rural stop sign at 3 am because you’re rushing someone to the hospital. Maybe you ran that school zone stop sign just after the final bell rang, again, because you’re on meth. Again.
      What it does mean is that just because you’ve given a lot of $ to Bill Clinton’s Gubernatorial Campaign or are in some other position to do him some favors, officers and management of your Tyson Chicken company are not given a wink when they have deliberately and repeatedly violated the clear wording of some laws they were well aware of. And the company doesn’t get away without being made to reimburse the state’s modest earning taxpayers for the cleanup.
      It means the Charles Manson doesn’t get a pass because he’s white. They Might have finally executed him by now if not for the California Supreme Court.
      It means the same principles apply to everyone.

  6. Jack Fitzgerald says:

    “Results of new testing, released in April, show landlords gave whites preferential treatment over black and Latino testers in 12 of 25 cases”
    What sort of testing and performed by whom? I want details on that study. Were the blacks and “Latinos” people with the same rent history, job stability, income and references as the “preferred” people? Note that the article cites “landlords”, not “White landlords”. I’d like to see how the black and “Latino” landlords differed in their preferences from the Whites. What about the Asians and others?
    These are the same people who are constantly bemoaning the existence of this huge black underclass. No jobs. (Felony convictions do keep people out of jobs.) No good schooling. (OK, so why do I want them around?) And if they have no jobs and have no education and can’t be bothered to educate themselves in all of their spare time, maybe they’re dealing drugs or breaking into cars and apartments of the people who are sleeping at night and working during the day. Hanging out in packs, shoplifting en masse from little stores privately-owned by small businessmen. And if they do have jobs and education then why do they need all of these “Programs”? Please pick one or the other.
    It’s really unfortunate that this stirring up keeps going on. People tend to prefer the company of who they tend to prefer the company of. And that’s it. Apartment renters have to spend time with their prospects and may be the same people who have to handle neighbor complaints, late payments, loud talking when there’s an issue… maybe the rental agents have kids in the same schools that the prospective tenants would be attending. Maybe they would be neighbors and the agents liked the “preferred” people better or their kids better. Maybe the agents had a feeling of wanting to help their nearer relatives ahead of someone else. If certain people think they’re not as welcome as others, maybe it’s because they Are less welcome than others. It’s not the job of rental agents to make the applicants more attractive.
    Why are mostly black neighborhoods mostly black? Should someone be looking into that? Maybe the blacks are chasing off the others! Should that behavior be judged on its effects rather than by its intentions? It could be found to be racist! The Oregonian editorial board should move there and do their own research.
    The “Oregonian” editorial board doesn’t want private property owners choosing their own tenants. The board thinks they’re better equipped to make those decisions from a distance.
    I don’t know who the members are of the “Oregonian” editorial board, how long they’ve lived in Oregon – or whether they live there at all. I do know that the paper is owned by “the descendants of S.I. Newhouse.” Take a look into that bunch.

    • jewamongyou says:

      Thanks for the information. I’ll look him up.

    • Stan d Mute says:

      Actually, this is a really brilliant point that is NEVER raised:
      “Why are mostly black neighborhoods mostly black? Should someone be looking into that? Maybe the blacks are chasing off the others!”
      Why indeed? The goal should be asking the question feigning innocence of understanding HBD. “Gee, black people are so wonderful, but they won’t allow me to live in their neighborhoods. They don’t feel welcoming and inclusive in Detroit.”
      The blank stare from liberals in reply would be absolutely priceless.

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