Many black Americans are leaving New York and California to seek decent wages and affordable housing in southern states, according to a Washington Post article that ignores the federal policy of importing foreign people to fill jobs and homes in New York and California.
“There is a noticeable lack of black people in these cities that were once the mecca for black America, for people fleeing the Jim Crow South,” the Post’s reporter told an interviewer.
The Post reported January 14 on the southern migration, which is now reversing the historic “Great Migration” of black Americans from the South to northern cities during the 1900s:
For the second census in a row, Chicago and its suburbs lost Black population, and has decreased by 130,000 since 1990. In Michigan, both the Detroit and Flint metropolitan areas lost Black population in absolute terms … Metro New York recorded its second consecutive loss in Black population, losing about 110,000 Black residents since 2000. In California, metro Los Angeles has lost 160,000 Black residents since 1990, while metro San Francisco has lost 90,000.
Many people are migrating from homes in sunny California and wealthy New York to southern states, the article shows:
The percentage of Black Americans who live in the South has been increasing since 1990, and the biggest gains have been in the region’s large urban areas, according to census data. The Black population of metro Atlanta more than doubled between 1990 and 2020, surpassing 2 million in the most recent census, with the city overtaking Chicago as the second-largest concentration of African Americans in the country after metropolitan New York. The Black population also more than doubled in metro Charlotte while greater Houston and Dallas-Fort Worth both saw their Black populations surpass 1 million for the first time
The National Archives describes the prior movement of black Americans from the south to the north:
The Great Migration was one of the largest movements of people in United States history. Approximately six million Black people moved from the American South to Northern, Midwestern, and Western states roughly from the 1910s until the 1970s. The driving force behind the mass movement was to escape racial violence, pursue economic and educational opportunities, and obtain freedom from the oppression of Jim Crow.
The movement north intensified during the high-wage decades while the federal government sharply restricted international migration:
During this period [after World War II], more people moved North, and further west to California’s major cities including Oakland, Los Angeles, and San Francisco, as well as Portland, Oregon and Seattle, Washington. Within twenty years of World War II, a further 3 million Black people migrated throughout the United States.
The domestic migration of black Americans — and also of poor white Americans from West Virginia and other states — largely ended after 1965 when the federal government allowed employers to hire international migrants. But the Washington Post article does not menti0n the federal government’s international migration policy.
The federal policy has extracted millions of people from poor countries to serve as cheap workers, high-occupancy renters, and government-funded consumers, especially in California and New York.
The federal pipeline of foreign consumers and foreign labor allows state and local governments the easy option of building their economies on cheap labor instead of the difficult task of creating a middle-class economy for Americans. For example, Joseph Salvo, New York City’s chief demographer, told the New York Times in April 2020 why city leaders prefer foreign bodies to replace the migrants who exited the city during the coronavirus crash:
In the pandemic, [migrants] are trying to make a living and coming home and living in close proximity to other people. And they work the cash-only jobs, service jobs, services in buildings, home health aides, that we start to lose. Our growth is going to depend on giving support to these immigrants, many of whom suffered and lost family members.
What we pray will happen is that the city will come back with a ferocity we have never seen in food, beverage, entertainment and hotels. All of that is going to come back. And hopefully the immigrant population will prosper because of that. That’s the key.
“We’re nothing if we’re not a nation of immigrants,” Democrat leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y, told a December 2020 online meeting of pro-migration business leaders. “Immigrants built this country with their hands, enriched our culture with their minds and spirit, and provided the spark that drives our economy.”
But for the establishment’s reporters, migration is an unmentionable force in the U.S. economy.
However, the Washington Post’s author, Emmanuel Felton, hinted at the issue during an interview with Charles Blow on the Black News Channel.
“You see black people leaving gentrifying cities like New York,” he said, without describing the people who are gentrifying blacks out of pleasant homes in Los Angeles, Washington D.C, New York, or the close-in districts on the southside of Chicago. Felton said:
We’re seeing these trends that started in the 90s of why people leaving the Bay Area, leaving Los Angeles, leaving Chicago, leaving New York, it [has not] lessened. So what that means over time is that … the loss of black population is becoming really noticeable. If you think about a movie like The Last Black Man in San Francisco, this is in our Zeitgeist now. There is a noticeable lack of black people in these cities that were once the mecca for black America, for people fleeing the Jim Crow South.
Black Americans are also leaving cities such as St. Louis, Detroit, and Cleveland, where manufacturing economies have collapsed, he said. Felton did not mention the impact of the federal government’s free trade policies on those cities.
There is some evidence that middle-class black Americans are leading the southern migration, Felton told Blow. “A lot of the people I talked to were black middle-class folks … It is sort of like what happened with the Great Migration … It was the strivers who left [the south], it was people who were willing to leave their homes and willing to leave comfort and try to make a go of it somewhere else.”
The Congressional Black Caucus does not oppose migration, even though many black Americans gained jobs and wages when President Donald Trump’s migration policies and the coronavirus combined to burst the government-inflated cheap labor bubble in 2020.
A wide variety of little-publicized polls do show deep and broad opposition to labor migration and the inflow of temporary contract workers into jobs young U.S. graduates seek. This opposition is growing, anti-establishment, multiracial, cross-sex, nonracist, class-based, bipartisan, rational, persistent, and recognizes the solidarity that Americans owe to one another.