HBD: Human Biodiversity

The Big Sort

More evidence that racial diversity and racial integration aren't compatible.     

Revealed: The maps that show the racial breakdown of America’s biggest cities
The Daily Mail online By David Gardner
25 September 2010

These are the maps that show the racial breakdown of America’s biggest  cities.

Using information from the latest U.S. census results, the maps show the extent to which America has blended together the races in the nation’s 40 largest cities.

With one dot equalling 25 people, digital cartographer Eric Fischer then colour-coded them based on race, with whites represented by pink, blacks by blue, Hispanic by orange and Asians by green.

The resulting maps may not represent what many might expect Barack Obama’s integrated rainbow nation to look like, as many cities have clear racial dividing lines.

Detroit: Red represents White, Blue is Black, Green is Asian, Orange is Hispanic, Gray is Other, and each dot represents 25 people


Washington, DC: The east-west divide of the nation's capital can clearly be seen.


Los Angeles: The city's Hispanic population lives predominantly in the city's poorer areas.

Detroit, for example, is infamous for its divide between black and white. But the map shows such a clear separation along the Eight Mile beltway that it is startling - almost bordering on segregation.

The strict east-west divide in Washington DC is also well known - but chilling to see so starkly outlined on the map of the nation's capital.

And in Los Angeles, the Latino population dominates the poorer areas of the city.

But, reassuringly, the maps do show that not all American cities are so divided.

In New York, the boundaries are so intensely coloured that they can hardly avoid being integrated. While the different racial groups still have their own areas, it is one of the most diverse of the major urban cities.


New York: The dots are so dense they almost cannot help but be separated - yet the Big Apple still has clear pockets of ethnicity


San Antonio: The Texan city blurs the lines better than most - though a divide can still be seen

San Antonio in Texas paints a much better picture of integration, with whites and Hispanics blurring the boundaries and no real sign of a rich white enclave.

Another Texan city, Houston, also shows a richer diversity of races spreading out from the centre and Las Vegas boasts a good mix.

San Francisco also presents a better picture of racial integration together with a larger Asian contingent.

The maps have quickly become a source of fascination for bloggers, even though the data used is a decade out of date.


Houston: The Texan city becomes diverse spreading out from the centre


San Francisco: The Californian city also shows pockets of diversity

‘I’d love to see the income data presented this way, too,’ said one.

Good magazine's Andrew Price said: 'What do we, as a society, want to see in maps like this? I think it's safe to say that the clear separation of races in Detroit is a symptom (or cause) of serious  social problems.

'At the same time,' he added, 'it seems unrealistic to expect perfect integration and it's unclear if we should want that anyway. It's great that our cities have vibrant ethnic neighbourhoods.'

The maps are based on information from the 2000 census, but Mr Fischer, 37, said in a blog on his Flickr site: ‘I intend to do a 2010 version as soon as the census finishes tabulating the data. I think the full release is planned for next June.

He told the Washington Post:' I always knew that cities had these racial divisions, but seeing them set out so graphically, that was the striking thing about them.'