I don't know when I became aware of the notion of "redlining." High school maybe. I do know that I learned it was a racial injustice. And I thought it was a thing of the past, like segregation. Or was it?
I'm reading "Paved A Way: Infrastructure, Policy and Racism in an American City" by Collin Yarbrough. The city is Dallas, Texas. I'm blogging as I go, using whatever parts of the book catch my attention. Today, Yarbrough introduces us to redlining and its long-term impact in Dallas.
Richard Rothstein’s book, The Color of Law, shines a bright light on the systemic role federal policy plays in creating and perpetuating inequality through racial and economic segregation. One of the most famous means of carrying this out was through the 1937 Home Owners’ Loan Corporation maps, which sectioned cities along race lines, provided federally backed loans to White neighborhood and restricted access to loans in neighborhoods of color. Neighborhoods of color, given a yellow or red color on the map, were more likely to see future highway construction, housing loss, and disinvestment.Paved A Way
Highway construction, housing loss, and disinvestment are way too entangled to find a neat cause-and-effect relationship with redlining, in Dallas or anywhere else. But the correlations are nonetheless too striking to deny links. They are all bound up in the toxic nature of racism. Collin Yarbrough promises to spell out those correlations in Dallas in the rest of his book.