The Pardu

The Pardu
Watchful eyes and ears feed the brain, thus nourishing the brain cells.

Saturday, April 21, 2018

Race Card? US Bank Mortgage Lending Kills That Phrase

Related imageDo you ever tire of hearing or reading about African-Americans suffering discriminatory practices grounded in racism? How about your reaction when you hear African-Americans complain about discrimination and racism? Are you one of the millions who quickly throw up that tired and worn defense: "Oh the race card!" If you thought, "well yes" to either question, you are an enabler of racists behavior perpetrated against a people in a blanket manner solely based on skin color.

Starbucks recent problems related to store managers not allowing equal access to restroom facilities and quickly calling law enforcement as quickly as Wyatt Earp's Doc Holliday could draw his Colt 45 single action revolver (and fire off four rounds), is an overt publicly recorded example of personal bias which folds into corporate policy and practice. 

Allow me to remind of the first Starbucks interaction which led to handcuffing and the jailing (for hours) of two black men who entered the store for a meeting.

The Voice
• 4:35 p.m. - Nelson and Robinson arrive at the Starbucks 10 minutes early for a business meeting. Nelson immediately asks to use the restroom but is told its only for paying customers. He sits down with Robinson and the manager comes over to ask if they want anything, they explain they're fine and are just waiting for their friend. 
• 4:37 p.m. - Police are called. 
 •4:41 p.m. - Officers arrive.

ABC News reported the stare manager defended her quick call to the cops based on an Excessive Loitering policy.  Well, yes, but such policies still places the burden of policy enforcement on the inner core perceptions and psyches of store managers.  Watch the last few seconds of the video if you are willing to lay the Starbucks handcuffing off to a policy.

The Los Angeles Store Manager really stepped into the "caffeine" as she used all the wrong behavior while applying here discrimination against a black person. as you watch a longer version of her interaction and discrimination, notice the words "....a private business". notice the nonverbal dissing of the guy with the cell phone and not the show of the open spread finger hand palm.  While the man with the camera wouldn't have felt at all differently about his restroom denial, the manager's non-verbals seemed to heighten the level of her actions.  Before moving on, allow me to remind of the mindset which places "private business" squarely in the realm of acceptable discriminators.  One last example of a private business along with total recall of Rand Paul's comments to Rachel Maddow about the ability of private businesses to discriminate ("discriminate" my word, Paul's implication and typical Libertarianism).

A few days later Starbucks executives spoke openly about "mistakes" made" and a need to review its operations as well as a two-hour bias sensitivity training across the corporation.  

Point made? 

I digress for purpose of illustration. 

This piece relates to corporate discrimination based on race which has a far greater impact than a retail store denying service with race as a potential contributing factor.  Some US banks seem to have unwritten policies (which lead to practices) that discriminate at a far great scale.  Home and business lending and an apparent corporate policy of avoiding lending to African-Americans and probably Latinos.

The list of major US banks which have settled discriminatory practices lawsuits for millions (actually billions) looks like a list of Who's Who in US Banking. 

The Atlanta Star  (March 2015 article linked)

JPMorgan Chase & Co.M&T Bank
Wells FargoBank of America
CitigroupNational City Bank/PNC Bank
Evans BankU.S. Bank

In March of this year, another US bank, Capital One, was charged with discriminatory practices against African-Americans and Latinos while using paid actors from each race to spur business. Of course, the discrimination lawsuit hasn't been settled, but the recency of the legal actions attests to an industry committed to race-based lending. 

Let's take a look back a few years for critical color commentating (to borrow a sport vernacular) on how the business of white privilege manifests. (albeit at times requested and unexpected by many) 

In 2012, an audio recording during a meeting (we must consider surreptitiously taken) investigators heard a revealing reality of one US banks lending practices.

During a BancorpSouth meeting, a manager was reported to have told meeting participants to give quick rejections (turned down in 21 days) to members of "protected classes" (minorities..and maybe unbeknownst to him women). He went further to state applications from whites shouldn't be restricted by the short review periods.

Follow this USA Today reporting of Mississippi based BancorpSouth. During a meeting, someone testified who deep-down didn't fully support BancorpSouth's discriminatory practices.

USA Today
"In discussing the explicitly race-based denial policy, a loan officer commented that 'they need to get their credit up,' and "stop paying their damn bills late,' and then laughed," the complaint charged.
As meeting participants discussed the bank's hiring of an African American employee, the complaint said a loan processor cautioned, 'don't use the n-word,' the complaint alleged. 
"A few moments later, a bank employee quipped, 'what's up, niggas!' the complaint alleged, saying meeting participants laughed at the racial remarks.

Wonder if that loan processor was so accustomed to hearing the "N" Word, the person set up the surreptitious recording?

In June of 2016, USA Today published a piece about the federal complaint and investigation which lead to a $10 million settlement of a Mississippi based bank.

    BancorpSouth(BXS)has agreed to pay a $10.6 million settlement of allegations the Mississippi-based regional bank used discriminatory mortgage lending practices that harmed African Americans and other minorities, federal officials said Wednesday Federal officials and the complaint alleged BancorpSouth violated federal housing and equal credit opportunity acts by:
  • Illegally redlining in Memphis, the market from which it receives the most applications, by structuring business to avoid and discourage mortgage applications from consumers in minority areas from at least 2011 to 2013.
  • Improperly having one of the bank's lending units deny mortgage and other loan applications from African Americans at higher rates than whites.
  • Discriminating against African American borrowers by charging them higher annual percentage rates than whites with similar loan qualifications.
Ugly, eh?

If you don't find what you have just completed reading clear and irrefutable evidence of why so many in America do not hesitate to call out racism when it should be called out, well........I will allow your to finish that thought.

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