Right Wing Nut House



Filed under: Blogging, Government, History, Politics, The Rick Moran Show — Rick Moran @ 11:07 am

The simple minded Congressman who wondered out loud whether abortion in the black community was so rampant that it can be compared to the suffering of slaves inadvertently has done us a favor.

Rather, he would have if the left was willing to engage in a conversation about the efficacy of federal government policies that are specifically directed at poverty stricken black communities. This is a “no go” zone because it challenges the foundation of modern liberalism to ask questions that have no good answers when it comes to the state of the black family, the ravaged inner city black communities, and an African American culture that tolerates a shocking number of teenage mothers, absent fathers, and the social problems that arise from dependency.

“Racism” as an encompassing catch all to explain the above doesn’t cut it. But its all the race baiters like Jackson and Sharpton - and their liberal allies - have because the alternative would be actually examining the problems of black communities in a cold, rational manner, devoid of the kind of emotionalism so beloved of the left, in order to eliminate or adjust federal policies that may in some cases, be contributing to the holocaust.

By contrast, it is much easier to take the inelegant words of Trent Franks out of context, twist their meaning, and play the race card for all it’s worth.

This fellow is a rabid abortion foe - so much so that he hyperbolically tried to connect abortion in the black community to slavery:

We should look back on that with criticism. It is a crushing mark on America’s soul. And yet today, half of all black children are aborted. Half of all black children are aborted. Far more of the African-American community is being devastated by the policies of today than were being devastated by policies of slavery. And I think, What does it take to get us to wake up?

He’s 100% wrong, of course. The idea that “far more” of the African American community has been affected by abortion than slavery is, on its face, absurd. And Rep. Franks didn’t mention the other half of that equation; 70% of children delivered to African American mothers are born out of wedlock.

What makes Rep. Franks remarks offensive is not the hate, but the tone deafness. It brings to mind a defense of Jim Crow that was common in the south in the 1950’s; blacks were better off when they were slaves and had massah to take care of them. I don’t believe that was Frank’s intent in saying that abortion was more devastating than slavery but it is easy - if you’re simply trolling to score political points against your foe by taking context out of meaning - to promote the perception that he was.

It is tempting to take statistics from 1965 on the effects of poverty on the black family and compare them to today, drawing the easy conclusion that federal poverty programs are to blame for the radical decline in the viability of the black family.

But nothing is ever that simple or easy. The fact is, when Daniel Patrick Moynihan penned his famous “Moynihan Report” when he was Assistant Secretary of Labor in 1965 that eloquently and in devastating detail raised the alarm about the disintegrating black nuclear family, the crisis was already at code red. The litany of statistics used by Moynihan compared the status of the black family in the 1950’s to where it was in 1965. The divorce rate was twice that of whites at 25% (now 68%). Female headed households was at 22% in 1965 (45% today). And while 70% of black children today are born out of wedlock, that number was at 25% in 1965.

It would be wrong to blame all the problems of the black family today for policies promulgated in the 1960’s. But it is a valid question to ask have any or all of those policies made things worse than they would have been if care had been taken to mitigate the impact on black families?

Federal programs targeted the symptoms of poverty largely by granting in kind payments to the head of household. I recall some spirited debates at the time among liberals about whether a guaranteed annual income, or Basic Income, should be substituted for housing vouchers, food stamps, and other Great Society expansion of welfare payments.

What could never be imagined by Johnson, and his social engineers was the devastating impact that dependency would have on the black community, and specifically, the black family. Those policies emasculated the black male, encouraged female welfare recipients to keep having children so that her welfare payments would increase, and made it more profitable for black couples not to marry. In short, all the cultural nuclear bombs identified by Moynihan back in 1965 that were already detonating on the African American landscape were, at the very least, exacerbated by some federal programs. Clearly, the increased opportunities available to blacks in the education and employment spheres had a positive impact. But others engendered consequences we still can’t talk about today.

A guaranteed annual income might have altered that equation. We’ll never know. Along with forcing cities to address the crisis in inner city schools, and more effective job training programs, building self esteem and promoting independence might have gone at least some ways toward saving the black family.

Bobby Kennedy was eager to change the thrust of much of the welfare state from dependency to freedom. How he might have accomplished this if he had been elected president is another of those “What ifs” in history that prick at our conscience. Was there - is there - another way to assist those Americans in poverty that would lift them up rather than keep them down? As long as even discussing the problem brings false cries of “racist,” we’ll never know.

Abortion, drug use, gangs, illegitimacy - all of these are symptoms of the destruction of the black family. Rep. Franks was making an accusation - overripe, in my opinion - that federal policies are responsible for the abortion rate among blacks, and by extension, the other symptoms of decline as well. He is suffering for his inelegance and tone deafness.

Too bad his critics refuse to engage on the substance of his critique.

1 Comment

  1. [...] Right Wing Nut House [...]

    Pingback by Rep. Trent Franks is right : The American MAXIM — 2/27/2010 @ 12:40 pm

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