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Wednesday, July 18, 2012

The Atlantic Cities: The Stigma of Riding the Bus

IMG_3357 I found this article, the full title of which is "Race, Class, and the Stigma of Riding the Bus in America," pretty interesting. In part, it discusses the impact of demographic shifts, and economic changes, on who is riding the bus, and how people view the bus.

13 comments:

Anonymous said...

The bus is GHETTO!

Anonymous said...

"Ghetto"? Depends on the bus. The D6 and the X2 seem to have very different demographics.

Anonymous said...

There are demographics and then there's behavior. I wouldn't be surprised if the X8 ridership was demographically more like the X2 than the D6, but it seems to have far fewer troublemakers.

Belfor said...

so everyone on that bus was having a problem with them riding the bus because they didn't have to? what the heck I understand that there is a little frustration involved but why did it have to turn to hostility? I don't know it irritates me when people make a big deal out of stupid stuff like riding a bus when you don't "have to"

Anonymous said...

I think we have a winner of the "incomprehensible post of the day" award!

wylie coyote said...

@anonymous6:13

I've rode on both the D6 and the X2 and haven't noticed much in the way of demographic difference, other than age (D6 skews older and is less crowded).

Anonymous said...

10 years ago I never rode a bus, but 2 things changed that for me. 1) I moved to an apartment building that had 3 buses that serviced the stop out front, so i got really used to seeing a bus right across the street 2) they put in tools so that i could easily plan out trips using the internet, so i could stop worrying when the bus would get me there and more into juggling an extra cup of coffee before the bus.

i don't mind my current bus (X2) is the Ghetto special, i can always get off at Union Station if it's too stupid and I can always go east to Minnesota Ave and grab the orange line

if the city wants to make the bus more popular make it more upscale, build little mini station stops so you are abov the sidewalks and modernize the fleet wth hybrids or even electrics. Get the folks at Virgin American to design the interiors too.

heyktb said...

I regularly ride the D8 and the X2 as does my husband, both to get to work as well as to get downtown to shop and go to the movies and museums. It is usually faster than walking the ten blocks to the metro for a train. I/we are often the only middle aged white folks on the bus. Sometimes we get looks, but mostly people just want to get to where they are going and pay us no mind. About twice a month we experience some form of race hatred, either directly or indirectly. But those instances do not keep me from Continuing to ride the bus. I do have many neighbors who would never ride the bus and call it ghetto. We think this is shortsighted and unfortunate. If the demographics of ridership were to become more representative of our community, it might go a long way to eliminate the stigma of taking the bus. Mass transit is healthier for our environment and permits the elimination of a car (or a second car) and those associated costs.

Anonymous said...

I like your comment, heyktb. I'm relatively new to the neighborhood, but I've been taking the X2 bus since I moved here in March, 2006. It is a good bus service that could be made better with fewer stops and (ideally) priority over lights during peak hours. The bus runs later than the metro and it runs fairly frequently.

I got very annoyed by a comment that a white girl friend of mine said - that "white people don't ride buses". I've lived in plenty of cities where white people DO ride buses and I think she was naive to make a comment like that. Public transit makes a lot of sense, and I'm happy to see a more diverse crowd using our buses over the past few years.

Anonymous said...

The moment they created apps on the iPhone that track bus times, I've been riding the bus. Hugely convenient. I am sometimes the only white person on the bus for multiple days in succession - depending on the destination. I've had plenty of conversations with black persons at the bus stops who ride these buses too, who can't stand the crazy folks that ride these buses - the young people who won't give up their seat for the elderly, or hog the seat for their bag, or yak on the cellphone. The point is that there are just rude and inconsiderate dopes in the world, and the rest of us - - regardless of ethnicity or race - are growing weary of the lack of civility, courtesy, and the absence of "please, thank you, and excuse me." Although my favorite experience was witnessing two men having a loud discussion clear across the bus from each other, with a bunch of words like MFs and SOBs in front of children, then a separate woman picks up her phone and says HELLO and starts yapping, and the two foul mouthed men yell at each other - "don't you hate that." ha. Everybody has their different standards of intolerance I suppose.

heyktb said...

I agree about the rudeness factor. Rude is rude no matter which ethnicity is responsible. I feel, however, less inclined to speak up on the bus when I am faced with rude behavior, such as the cursing in front of the kids, after I did so once last year and was told to mind my own business followed by several renditions of bitch, mf's assorted racial epithets. I was both bewildered and dismayed that none of the other riders spoke up at this point. I am sure that if a white person was screaming the N word at someone on the bus, the other rider's voices would be heard.

H Street Landlord said...

heyktb you should start a blog. Lol. Keep doin' what ya doin'.

heyktb said...

my blog will need to be "old chick hip hood"!