In the second look at the relationship between class and race, this report reviewed demographic data from The Washington Post's marketing research department. This survey divided the Washington area black population into three categories:
Claritas' "Cluster 31." Claritas has assigned the term Cluster 31 to solidly middle-class blacks who live in predominantly black middle-class neighborhoods.
Blacks who do not live in Cluster 31 neighborhoods but who live in households where total income is at least $35,000 annually. That generally means affluent blacks living in predominantly white neighborhoods.
Blacks who do not live in Cluster 31 neighborhoods and who make less than $35,000 in household income -- less well-off blacks.
The major economic difference in these three groups is not necessarily the amount of money the chief wage-earner makes. The clearest difference is the number of people per household who work.
The more affluent the black group, the more likely its members are to own their home. The significance of this is that a home is the most common way for a middle-class family to accumulate wealth to pass on to the next generation.
The affluent blacks who live in predominantly white neighborhoods are most likely to be 35 or younger. A person who is 35 today was 12 years old when the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was enacted.
Middle-class Cluster 31s are more likely to be married than those blacks who are either richer or poorer. Being single or living together without benefit of matrimony is for those of other classes.
Cluster 31s are more inclined to be religious than either the more affluent or poorer classes.
In addition, 20 percent of the top two groups are Catholic, more than the under-$35,000 group. Cluster 31s are more likely by a small margin to be members of a main line Christian, Jewish or Moslem denomination than those in either of the other two groups.
The more affluent they are, the less likely blacks are to live in the District, and the more likely they are to live in Virginia. Of the most affluent who live in predominantly white neighborhoods, 10 percent live in Montgomery County, 32 percent live in Prince George's County, 6 percent live in Fairfax, 5 percent live in Arlington and Alexandria and 6.4 percent live in Prince William, Loudoun and Charles counties.