1. “Cities Can Sue Big Banks Over Effects Of Discriminatory Practices, Supreme Court Says.”
Chappell, Bill. “Cities Can Sue Big Banks Over Effects Of Discriminatory Practices, Supreme Court Says.” NPR, NPR, 1 May 2017, www.npr.org/sections/the two-way/2017/05/01/526413560/cities-can-sue-big-banks-over-effects-of-discriminatory-practices-supreme-court.
National Public Radio is an American privately and publicly funded non-profit membership media organization that serves as a national syndicator to a network of 900 public radio stations in the United States.
What? NPR article stating that the Supreme Court decided that cites can sue big banks over effects of discriminatory practices.
Who’s involved? NPR’s reporter Bill Chappell, the City of Miami, Wells Fargo, Bank of America, the Supreme Court
When? The article was written May 1, 2017 at 2:56 PM
Where? This happened in Miami, FL
-Because of discriminatory and predatory lending practices causing economic harm to the city, under the Fair Housing Act, the Supreme Court decided that the City of Miami can sue large banks like Wells Fargo and Bank of America in a 5-3 vote.
-Here’s the tricky part: “But the justices said that to win damages, the city must prove a direct link to the revenue loss and increased costs, and that is an extremely high bar to clear,” says NPR’S Nina Totenburg. Overall, opposing views argue that the direct link that is drawn between the revenue loss and the increased costs is a very thin line.
-In particular, Miami is accusing those companies of targeting African-American and Latinos with being the victims of these predatory lending practices from 2004 to 2012. Those lending practices led to foreclosures and vacancies in minority neighborhoods, which in turn lead to crippling property values and tax revenues, and putting a burden on the city to service blighted and unsafe properties. Overall, this slowed down the city’s racial integration process as a whole.
-This ruling by the Supreme Court came two years after the Supreme Court decided that “claims of racial discrimination in housing cases shouldn’t be limited by questions of intent.”
-This case was argued against in lower courts as not being in the City’s favor, because they viewed the city’s damages as “foreseeable.” The Supreme Court said that the lower courts were wrong in that they “erred in holding that foreseeability is sufficient to establish proximate cause under the FHA.”
-Although this article was less data/statistical based and more informative, I think that it will be very useful for our research – not to mention the fact of how recently this case was, and how large of a scale it is – a city suing several very large banks. I think it will be interesting to continue to see how it unfolds in the future, and if the City of Miami ends up going through with the case, now that they have the legal clearance.
Because of the discriminatory and predatory lending practices by Wells Fargo and Bank of America from 2004-2012, under the Fair Housing Act, the Supreme Court ruled in a 5-3 vote in May of this year that the City of Miami is, indeed allowed to sue the banks for the economic harm and slowed racial progress they caused the city because of the unfair lending practices that occurred to people of different races, primarily Hispanic and African American.
- “GAO Study: Segregation worsening in U.S. schools”
Toppo, USA TODAY Greg. “GAO Study: Segregation Worsening in U.S. Schools.” USA Today, Gannett Satellite Information Network, 17 May 2016, www.usatoday.com/story/news/2016/05/17/gao-study-segregation-worsening-us-schools/84508438/.
USA TODAY is a multi-platform news and information media company. Founded in 1982, its mission is to serve as a forum for better understanding and unity to help make the USA truly one nation.
What? Report with data showing that segregation in US schools is only worsening
Who’s involved? USA Today’s Greg Toppo reporting, GAO, and schools
When? Last May is when it was written
-This report was requested by Congress in May of 2014, being that it was the 60th anniversary of Brown vs. Board of Education. The results were released last year, May 17th, 2016.
– The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) investigators found that from 2000-2014, both the percentage of K-12 public schools in high-poverty and the percentage of schools that are comprised of mostly African-American or Hispanic students rose significantly The increase went from 7,009 schools to 15,089 schools.
-This is a 9 percent to 16 percent increase of segregated schools in America.
-75 to 100 percent of the students at these schools were either Hispanic or Black, and eligible for reduced/free lunch (how they knew if the child was in poverty)
-Not only are the numbers of the increase shocking, but it was discovered that these schools offer disproportionately fewer math, science, and college prep courses, and had much higher rates of students that were held back/expelled/suspended. So sad
-I agree with U.S. Rep John Conyers, in his reaction to the horrifying results: “There simply can be no excuse for allowing educational apartheid in the 21st century.”
Upon the 60th anniversary of the landmark Supreme Court decision Brown v. Board of Education, Congress requested that the GAO conduct a study of the current state of desegregation in our nation’s schools. The results of this study were quite surprising – they showed that the number of schools that are racially segregated has increased dramatically since the year 2000. Further, it showed that these schools offered fewer college prep courses, and had higher levels of students who were did not complete their high school education, or were suspended or expelled. These alarming findings indicate that schools are not complying with laws requiring desegregation, and the result is schools that are not optimally helping the students that they exist to serve.
3. “The Desegregation and Resegregation of Charlotte’s Schools”
Smith, Clint. “The Desegregation and Resegregation of Charlotte’s Schools.” The New Yorker, The New Yorker, 3 October 2016, www.newyorker.com/news/news-desk/the-desegregation-and-resegregation-of-charlottes-schools.
The New Yorker is a weekly magazine offering a signature mix of reporting and commentary on politics, international affairs, popular culture and the arts, science and technology, and business, along with fiction, poetry, humor, and cartoons.
What? Charlotte, NC public schools are now being re-segregated
Who’s Involved? Clint Smith, New York Times Author, Charlotte, North Carolina, and their schools
When? Current – article written last year
Where? Charlotte, North Carolina, USA
– in 1954, the Supreme Court ruled in Brown v. Board of Education that segregated schools are unconstitutional, and mandated that schools across the country be integrated. It took years to accomplish this goal.
-Charlotte, N.C. was slow to desegregate their schools, until 1969 lawsuit filed by the NAACP (on behalf of a family whose son was denied admission to an integrated school) ultimately went to the Supreme Court. Their ruling ordered the implementation of a busing program, which served to make Charlotte a “case study in integration”. Districts across the South modeled their integration plans on Charlotte, and by 1984, the city considered their fully-integrated schools as their proudest achievement.
-The successful program lasted for nearly 30 years, until another lawsuit claimed that a student’s white status prevented her from being admitted to a magnet school. The anti-busing judge ordered the schools to cease using race in school assignments, ending mandatory busing.
-The result: schools that had been integrated and high achieving returned to being stratified by race & income. Neighborhoods became more segregated.
-Research has shown that students in integrated schools (whether white, black, wealthy, poor) are ALL more likely to benefit academically, as well as having greater levels of intergroup friendships and less racial fears and stereotypes. In addition, studies show that when schools re-segregate, the most qualified teachers tend to transfer, ensuring less qualified teaches in the segregated schools.
-School desegregation is associated with higher graduation rates, employability, and earnings, as well as decreased rates of incarceration.
-Schools are the single largest means of reducing inequality in our country, and due to re-segregation, we are making the choice to return to the social stratification of our past.
After years of being a model for the benefits of integrated schools, Charlotte, N.C.’s public schools are now re-segregated, which has resulted in lower graduation rates, employability, and earnings among their African-American students, as well as higher levels of incarceration for these students. The choice to return to this model will serve to heighten racial tensions, and will ultimately reverse decades of progress toward racial equality.
These three articles serve as examples of different ways that the practice of racial discrimination is harmful to the African-American community, as well as our communities as a whole. The first article, about how Miami, Florida was granted the green light by the Supreme Court to sue two major banks for damages under the Fair Housing Act, explains that the banks’ practice of discriminatory and predatory lending practices not only caused harm to minority customers, but also led to foreclosures and vacancies, which reduced tax revenues for the city. This, in turn, created a burden on the city. The other two articles examine the effects of a national trend toward re-segregating schools. The article about the study commissioned by the Congress cited specific ways in which this trend has created inferior outcomes for minority students. The third article, also about re-segregation, chronicles events in Charlotte, North Carolina, once a shining example of the positive effects of desegregation. A school system that once prided itself on improved outcomes for ALL students as a result of desegregation now finds itself returning to a situation in which there is stratification and a return to neighborhood schools that contain the “haves” and the “have nots”, which in turn is creating poor outcomes for students who formerly had a dramatically improved chance of upward mobility. The effect of racial discrimination is detrimental to all of us, whether it be through lending practices or through school segregation, and should be thoughtfully addressed by the court system in this country.