CRF Blog

Powerful, Disturbing History of Residential Segregation in America

by Bill Hayes

In A Powerful, Disturbing History of Residential Segregation in America for the New York Times Book Review, David Oshinsky reviews The Color of Law: A Forgotten History of How Our Government Segregated America by Richard Rothstein.

One of the great strengths of Rothstein’s account is the sheer weight of evidence he marshals. A research associate at the Economic Policy Institute, he quite simply demolishes the notion that government played a minor role in creating the racial ghettos that plague our suburbs and inner cities. Going back to the late 19th century, he uncovers a policy of de jure segregation in virtually every presidential administration, including those we normally describe as liberal on domestic issues. [more]