“What goes up must come down” is not exactly an axiom that normally gets tossed around in the science of population migration, but that looks like an apt gloss of the nation’s African American moving trends.
According to a new study, the South is fielding waves of incoming black individuals packing up from the North and West for new prospects, a kind of demographic gravity that backtracks the Great Migration of the post-WWII years.
The Wall Street Journal has an article (and nifty chart) on the study, which was culled from data mined in the 2010 census. The findings conclude that currently three quarters of black America resides in the South. Cleveland, it turns out, is among the cities that have lost the highest number of African Americans between 2000 and 2009.
Among 25 big U.S. metro areas with the largest growth in African-American population between 2000 and 2009, 16 were in the South—including Atlanta and Dallas—according to the Census Bureau's American Community Survey. Among the big losers were cities in the North and West, including Detroit, Los Angeles and Cleveland.
According to the study, Cleveland metropolitan area had lost 8,979 African Americans since the millennium. This movement is bad news, because it includes college educated individuals — a genuine brain drain. The piece spotlights Youngstown as a particular ground zero for this phenomenon.
In Youngstown, Ohio, the metro area lost 12.3% of its black college graduates from 2000-2009, compared with a 3.2% decrease in 25-and-over blacks overall.