Saturday, May 16, 2015


Years ago I had a random bar chat with a local bar owner (not at his bar). He's known around town, known to be a good guy, liberal politics, etc. He was being candid about a situation he was worried about at his bar. The problem was that it had become popular with African-Americans.

He said that they were great customers, that he had no problem running a bar which was filled with black people. The problem was this.
Sixty-forty: that’s a dining room that’s 60 percent white and 40 percent black. Forty percent is the tipping point, they all said. More than 40 percent black, and suddenly, they said, the numbers don’t just flip. More than 40 percent, and — said one— the whites scurry to their holes like mice. Soon, he said, you’re looking at a restaurant where the clientele is predominantly black.

The issue was that there just weren't enough black customers to give him the level of business that he wanted. If there were "too many" black people in the bar, white customers wouldn't come in at all, and then he wouldn't have enough customers.

Anyway, it seemed like he was being candid and not racist. He wasn't suggesting he was going to try to "solve" this problem in any way, just that it was a genuine business issue, because white people are racist.