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What’s the real Ward 9, and other thoughts on demographics

Census results say the District is rapidly losing its black majority, which has Marion Barry rather upset. He says:

“We’re going to stop this trend — gentrification… I believe in integration, but I don’t believe in the apartheid we have in Ward 8.”

Barry went on to refer to Prince George’s County as “Ward 9″ because so many of the District’s former residents have moved there in recent years.

As a white person I feel stuck between a rock and a hard place when it comes to gentrification, because it seems like no matter what I do, I’m the bad guy. First white people were bad guys for abandoning the city, now white people are bad guys for coming back, except in Ward 8 where white people are bad guys for not coming back. ‘We’ve got to stop gentrification, but we’ve got to do something about the lack of integration in Ward 8′. Uhhhh…

Anyway, I thought Barry’s Ward 9 comment was interesting, but also potentially applicable to more places than just Prince George’s County. Arlington is an obvious contender, since it’s dense and urban and, y’know, it used to be part of DC. Maybe arguments could also be made for Silver Spring, or Baltimore, or – who knows – Denver.

So I put together the little survey attached. What do you think?

March 25th, 2011 | Permalink
Tags: question, social



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