The linked article, is from the Wilson Quarterly, a publication of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, http://www.wilsonquarterly.com/blog/printpost.cfm/In_Essence/2013/4/5/escaping-the-ghetto#more. It is an interesting article about a study that was done in the 1990s, and it provided an opportunity for some families to move out of the Ghettos, in which they lived.
“Moving to Opportunity” was a Federal program that offered vouchers to 4,600 households, which enabled them to move from high-poverty, inner-city neighborhoods and get apartments in better areas. Half of the families took advantage of the vouchers, while the others did not. No other financial assistance was provided.
After ten years, a follow-up study found that most of the characteristics, such as nutrition, health care, education, income, etc. hardly changed; however, one thing did–Happiness improved dramatically. Even there, however, there was a difference.
The study found that there are now two basic types of segregation in America: racial and income. Families that moved to neighborhoods which were less segregated by income, found happiness, perhaps mostly due to less gang violence and drugs. Families that moved to less racial, but similarly income-segregated neighborhoods apparently did not enjoy the benefit of additional happiness.
This commentary seems to mirror something that I read recently, about a young man from Chicago’s inner-city, who knew what it’s like to lose friends to gun violence. He is now attending college in Georgia. He was quite disheartened by the fact that both of his Senators, from the Peach State, voted against the recent Gun-Control Bill. He cited the term that his friends back home use: “LIFE”–Living in Fear Everyday.