An underclass needs a critical mass, and white America has not had one.
But now the overall white illegitimacy rate is 22%. The figure in low-income, working-class communities may be twice that. How much illegitimacy can a community tolerate? Nobody knows, but the historical fact is that the trendlines on black crime, dropout from the labor force, and illegitimacy all shifted sharply upward as the overall black illegitimacy rate passed 25%.
The causal connection is murky -- I blame the revolution in social policy during that period, while others blame the sexual revolution, broad shifts in cultural norms, or structural changes in the economy. But the white illegitimacy rate is approaching that same problematic 25% region at a time when social policy is more comprehensively wrongheaded than it was in the mid-1960s, and the cultural and sexual norms are still more degraded.
The white underclass will begin to show its face in isolated ways. Look for certain schools in white neighborhoods to get a reputation as being unteachable, with large numbers of disruptive students and indifferent parents. Talk to the police; listen for stories about white neighborhoods where the incidence of domestic disputes and casual violence has been shooting up. Look for white neighborhoods with high concentrations of drug activity and large numbers of men who have dropped out of the labor force. Some readers will recall reading the occasional news story about such places already.
I don't really know. In the San Fernando Valley, for example, there is a single middle school that's notorious for white biker types, where parents with prison tattoos show up drunk for conferences with their kids' teachers. But even that school is less than half white these days. In the Valley, the white underclass either leaves or gets Hispanicized (e.g., the diverse California prison gang Nazi Lowriders), so I couldn't really say.
Are there any white underclass neighborhoods that look like The Wire?