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His rant makes it seem as though the poor people who lived in these areas before gentrification wanted to stay poor and didn't want a safer place to live or better schools. It's an insult to anyone who lived there.
"I didn't mean to patronize, I genuinely respect and agree with many of the positions you take around here. I just wanted to avoid rehashing all the points I made on the original post since I gathered from your first comment that you had read at least some of those threads and didn't want to engage.But since you asked...Spike's argument, such as I understand it, is that basically because the area is of a particular culture/background means that others cannot come from the outside and assert themselves.Well yes and no...there are a few things wrong with this interpretation. First and foremost the word "cannot". White people seem to always take this word really personally, which again (to me and most Black folk) validates the underlying complaint.When Spike says "cannot" he means "should not because it's ethically wrong" and/or "cannot while also claiming to be non-racist". Yes, this is about White people asserting themselves in established Black cultural spaces and the reason it's different from most other histories of geographic/demographic shift that do NOT involve White people moving into minority spaces is because of the way White people assert themselves in every other aspect of American life.Most specifically, this is VERY different from the dynamic 60 years or so ago when Black people first began to settle in what were then predominantly White neighborhoods. The primary differences:Those neighborhoods were not the only places where White people got to experience being a demographic majorityThe Black people moving in did not have a cultural monopoly such that those neighborhoods were the only places White people got to affirm and express their culture without fear of censure and reprisalThe Black people moving in did not have such a relatively advanced cultural infrastructure and economy (we won't get into how that disparity comes about in the first place) that they were able to rapidly cannibalize White-owned business and replace them with ones narrowly-tailored to their own interestsThe White people who moved out did so largely because they chose not to live near people for whom they had contempt, not because they could not afford to stayThe Black people moving in were by and large deferential to their White neighbors and went to great lengths to assimilate to their neighborhoods' existing social norms and values (in part because it was absolutely a matter of personal safety)Speaking of which...nothing even close to THIS has happened to any White person attempting to move into Brooklyn, which makes the dramatic outrage in response to Spike's frustrated rant (mere words) look downright self-indulgent and foolish to the people like Spike's daddy and other longtime residents who stand to be bought out because THAT is the kind of shit they had to go through when they wanted to move to a new neighborhood. That is how White people went about saying "You cannot move here". Not even close to the same. All of those dynamics are in reverse here, making the issue a lot deeper than "the neighborhood is changing and I don't like it". But White people on the whole have very little understanding of these issues and very little willingness to understand these issues, because it would require them to either make different choices or acknowledge their own lack of ethics and moral character.So instead, as per usual, the reflexive response is to make it about them and their rights. "This is economically advantageous to me and who are you to tell me I can't have what I want?!! (P.S. - I haven't heard a word you've said about what matters to you and don't care.)"That same self-serving, covetous, socially-irresponsible attitude colonized Africa, justified the slave trade and native American genocide and as allowed the U.S. to assert a destabilizing influence in numerous countries abroad with little understanding of the damage we were doing until it was too late.But Spike Lee said motherfucker so he's a monster."
There seem to be more shenanigans as a result of his comments:http://gawker.com/do-the-right-thing-painted-on-house-next-to-spike-lee-1533502523