Saturday, March 15, 2014

When the truth is offensive nothing changes

We can't address the problem of inner city (Black) poverty if we will not admit the problem. The problem is not lack of jobs or discrimination that will not give African Americans a chance, but is the sick culture of crime, dependency, and values that make it OK for single girls to become mothers at age 15.

Paul Ryan recently got chastised by the Congressional Black Caucus for this remark:

 There is a "tailspin of culture, in our inner cities in particular, of men not working and just generations of men not even thinking about working or learning the value of work."
Representative Barbara Lee of California, a member of the Congressional Black Caucus, called Ryan's remarks a "thinly veiled racial attack." "Let's be clear, when Mr. Ryan says 'inner city,' when he says, 'culture,' these are simply code words for what he really means: 'black'," Lee said in a statement. (link

Well, yes, "inner city" generally does mean Black community. I think Ryan knew that when he said it. Instead of Ryan sticking by his guns he backtracked and said he was "was inarticulate." "I was not implicating the culture of one community, but of society as a whole," he said. "We have allowed our society to isolate or quarantine the poor rather than integrate people into our communities. The predictable result has been multi-generational poverty and little opportunity."

If we are so afraid of offending people, if we can not tell the truth, we are not going to address the root cause of "inner city" poverty. In the inner city, a young man has a better chance of going to prison than to college.  Children drop out of school barely able to read and write.  Many are unemployed because they are unemployable.  They have no skills, are not dependable, have no work ethic and an attitude. There are communities of blocks and blocks of public housing units where almost no one works and  there are no fathers.  Generations of children grow up with no role models of intact nuclear families where the parents go to work every day. In a lot of the inner city, the "baby daddy" comes and visits about the time the welfare check is delivered and this is normal.  By thirteen the young men are in juvenile and by15 the young girls are pregnant.  The highest aspiration of many young girls is to get pregnant so they can qualify for a public housing unit of their own and move out of momma's apartment. "Inner city" poverty is caused by pathological degenerate behavior. The cure for inner city poverty is for Blacks to start "acting white." There, I said it. That is what Paul Ryan should have said.

I know it is not easy to change a culture. Welfare reform was a start and progress was being made but that experiment was abandoned.  I am not for neglecting the problems of poverty. I think we should have an anti-poverty program that encourages work and families.  We should phase out public housing as we know it all together.  We should encourage and promote charter schools and school choice.  We should resurrect the concept of enterprise zones. We should think outside the box. Maybe we should pay children a bonus if they reach age 18 and have never been pregnant or in trouble with the law.  I am for doing something about poverty, but finding remarks that tell the truth "highly offensive" and the truth teller backing down from the remarks is going to ensure that we dance around the edges of the problem of inner city poverty and fail to address it.

Stumble Upon Toolbar
My Zimbio
Top Stories

No comments:

Post a Comment