'Whitopia:' Rich Benjamin's Book and Journey to White America
In his new book "Whitopia" Rich Benjamin coins the term Whitopia which refers to an enclave that is "whiter than the nation, its respective region and its state." Whitopia examines the reasons for and results from white ethnic enclaves. Rich Benjamin has three criteria for a Whitopia:
- The area (municipality or section of one) must have had a 6% population growth since the year 2000.
- The majority of the growth must be Caucasian.
- The area must have a certain pristine je-ne-sais-quoi where everyone feels safe and might know all other residents. This is described further below.
For the writing of his book he lived in three different Whitopias to fully experience them and learn about the people who live in and move to them. Most intriguing are peoples reasons to move to a Whitopia which can vary from the nice scenery to feeling like a "refugee of diversity" where people want to live far away from immigrants and cite the "bad aspects of diversity" as the reason. I wish I had insight into diversity's bad aspects.
The je-ne sais quoi that Rich Benjamin writes about is described in "Whitopia's" Introduction:
Imagine moving to a place where you can leave your front door unlocked as you run your errands, where the community enjoys a winning ratio of playgrounds to potholes, where you can turn your kids loose at 3 p.m., not to worry, then see them in time for supper, where the neighbors greet those children by name, where your trouble-free high school feels like a de facto private school, where if you decide to play hooky from work, you can drive just twenty minutes and put your sailboat on the water