Masters of Inequality: 50 years after our cities burned, why American society is still so divided, and what we must do now to avoid chronic conflict

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9780990518723: Masters of Inequality: 50 years after our cities burned, why American society is still so divided, and what we must do now to avoid chronic conflict

Masters of Inequality fills a huge gap in the discussion about America's racial divisions and the closely related problem of out-of-control housing costs. The book's August 11, 2015, release date coincides with the 50th anniversary of the start of the 1965 riot that marked the beginning of an intensely violent and politically formative three-year period in American history - a period that shaped the current state of housing and urban policy, as well setting a perilous course for race relations in America. In this cogent and hard-hitting analysis, award-winning housing and urban affairs journalist Andre Shashaty recounts how intense racial division continued in America's northern cities well after the civil rights victories in the south, and why the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development was created 50 years ago to address poor living conditions and high housing costs - and, it was hoped, to eliminate America's black ghettos and open the suburbs to integrated housing. The book explains how HUD has succeeded in many ways, but how it's progress has always been limited by political opposition. Masters of Inequality reveals how the housing segregation that existed in the 60s continues today, albeit in more subtle but insidious ways, and why powerful political forces are working to keep it that way. Masters of Inequality explains why we have continued concentrations of poverty and racial and economic segregation and how they are damaging our society. It shows how conservative political forces are intent on turning back the clock on what progress has been made in providing housing to all Americans on an equal basis. This book gives Americans and their political leaders important context for discussions about two of today's critical issue: the increasing racial tension in our country and the crisis presented by ever-increasing housing costs. Shashaty makes a strong case that renewed investment in HUD and its housing programs, as well as new efforts to control exploding housing costs, are critical to the future stability and cohesion of American society. Masters of Inequality is the only comprehensive and readable analysis of our housing problems and how they contribute to inequality. It explains why, with the 2016 election looming, we must decide whether we wish to keep moving forward with programs that work, or accede to the budget cutting fever in Washington, and let concentrated poverty and housing segregation continue. Advance praise for Masters of Inequality -- "In the current public discourse about sustaining the middle class and about addressing inequality, the subject of housing does not figure as a central theme. In his writing, Andre Shashaty strives to correct that national oversight. This book succeeds in persuasively establishing decent and acceptable housing as a centerpiece of social progress. He effectively points out where we as a nation have succeeded in housing solutions and where we have failed. And throughout he reminds us in stirring language of the work that remains to be done. " -- Henry Cisneros, former secretary, U.S. Dept. of Housing & Urban Development

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Andre F. Shashaty
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