In his new book, Coming Apart: The State of White America, 1960-2010, Charles Murray uses Fishtown as a prototypical white, lower-class community in decline. Philadelphians know Fishtown as one of a few city neighborhoods attracting urban hipsters and young families. Where Sanka was once considered gourmet, La Colombe is now widely sold. I should know; I’ve lived in Fishtown for 27 years.
An earlier book that Murray cowrote, The Bell Curve, was roundly criticized for its flawed conclusion that blacks are on average less intelligent than whites. In Coming Apart, Murray avoids accusations of racism by suggesting that the eroding moral character of low-income white Americans is driving down their average IQ as well.This article was originally published in Philly.com.