[A]lthough gentrification displaces a few low-income minority Americans, this isn’t a widespread phenomenon, and it isn’t leading to re-segregation — if anything, it appears to be modestly reversing the effects of white flight. Of course, rising housing costs are still a burden for those who aren’t displaced, which is part of a more general crisis of affordability in the country’s more desirable cities. And higher rents deter poor minority Americans from moving to economically healthy neighborhoods. The government should be doing all it can to bring down housing costs.
But the phenomenon of gentrification tends to distract urbanists, reporters and policy makers from the bigger problem afflicting American cities — concentrated poverty.