The Post reports on a Pew study which says black middle class children more often grow up in poorer neighborhoods than do white middle class children and there's a high correlation between one's neighborhood and one's eventual status. That is, black middle class children more often end up as lower class adults than do white middle class children.
It makes sense to me. It may be my preconceptions talking, but I think people who do well are often envied by their relatives and neighbors and expected to share the wealth. I think that's particularly true of blacks, perhaps because the black community has stronger ties although it might simply be the by-product of the distribution of wealth. (Is there such a thing as the "white community"?)
I remember a book by an anthropologist studying a small Caribbean island, entitled "Crab Antics", the thesis of which was the less successful tried to pull down the more successful.
[Added: Watched the first two episodes of The Corner last night. It's the HBO dramatization of a nonfiction book written by David Simon about Baltimore; it led eventually to The Wire. The major characters are the McCulloughs, a black couple who had it made then lost it to crack, and their son, DeAndre who is vacillating between the drug culture and school. We don't see Gary's (the father) fall, just the aftermath but the writer makes it sound as if he was dragged down by his obliging his old friends. I recommend both the book and the TV series.]