September 16, 2007

Diversity is OK, but ...

In the midst of the MSM frenzy over the "Jena 6" case (a case in which Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson actually had a legitimate reason to go down and raise hell), once again the double standard over "diversity" pops up -- this time about the changing complexion of Washington DC:

Much has changed since Ben's Chili Bowl opened nearly 50 years ago on a bustling strip known as America's Black Broadway for its thriving black-owned shops and theaters.

Back then, the diner was a popular hangout for black bankers, doctors and blue-collar workers. Jazz greats Duke Ellington and Ella Fitzgerald could be found enjoying chili half-smokes and milkshakes after performing at clubs.

Now, the crowd at the Washington landmark is sometimes mostly white, reflecting a neighborhood metamorphosis characterized by high-end condominiums and businesses such as Starbucks. "Sometimes you look around and wonder, 'Where are all the black people?' " said Virginia Ali, who opened the diner with her husband, Ben, in 1958.

A similar transformation is happening across Washington as the black population declines and more white residents and other ethnic groups move in. Demographers say if the trend continues, the District of Columbia could lose its longtime majority-black status within 10 years.

The key quote is Ms. Ali's at the article's end:

While diversity is good and change is inevitable, she said, "you lose the closeness of an ethnic community."

"Diversity" is only important, it seems, when people want it to be important. The concept is not as necessary, apparently, for minorities ("... you lose the closeness of an ethnic community"). As we've noted here previously, Historically Black Colleges see no need to "diversify," or are criticized when they attempt it. Why don't these institutions need a "critical mass" of diversity as argued by the defendants in the famous Michigan affirmative action cases? Wouldn't such a critical mass be a good thing for Washington DC?

In addition, can you imagine what the reaction would be if a Caucasian resident said what Ms. Ali stated at the end of the article if white residents were becoming the minority group in a town? I bet that the AP's Brian Westley's tone wouldn't be as amiable.

Posted by Felix at September 16, 2007 10:46 AM | TrackBack

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