The housing boom at the turn of the 21st century gave minorities an unprecedented opportunity in home ownership. But, what seemed to be an opportunity resulted in a bait and switch that has many families homeless today.
To add insult to injury, Bloomberg Businessweek ran a story February 25, on the housing rebound the country is supposed to be experiencing and the cover of the magazine depicts African Americans and Latinos in a house full of money waving wads of money around in their hand, according to NBC Latino. Well, the disrespectful images couldn’t be further from the truth of what really happened when minorities were given promissory notes for homes the banks knew they would not be able to afford, but reeled them in via predatory lending anyway.
What Bloomberg Businessweek refers to as a “housing rebound” does not apply to minorities at all. The only families that may have benefited are those families that were able to get retribution from the lawsuit against those banks that participated in predatory lending. The images on the cover are a clear example of blaming the victim. According to the report:
“A Pew research study found that Hispanic household wealth fell by 66 percent from 2005 to 2009 and African-American wealth fell by 53 percent, identifying the principal cause as plummeting house values, which led to the erosion in wealth among all groups.”
So who exactly is filling our homes to the brim with money? Businessweek’s editor Josh Tyrangiel only had this to say for himself:
“Our cover illustration last week got strong reactions, which we regret,” said editor, Josh Tyrangiel in a statement. “Our intention was not to incite or offend. If we had to do it over again we’d do it differently.”
Wow. Janis Bowdler, the director of economic policy at The National Council of La Raza (NCLR) said:
“I found the cover shocking and incredibly insulting,” Bowdler says. “Not only does the cover not relate to the article, it’s incredibly ironic given the changing demographics of this country and somehow insinuates that by trying to have a small slice of American dream they’re money grabbers.”
Bloomberg Businessweek has to do better than this lame excuse and admission of “regret.” Where’s the apology? That statement speaks volumes. Read more here.