Media, administration selective on issues of race
The “news” rarely, if ever, discusses the problems of out-of-wedlock births, the decline of the family unit, the decline of the influence of the church, the low percentage rate of high school graduation, the percentage of black-on-black crime and of black crime overall, the percentage of black incarceration, the percentage of black unemployment, particularly for young black males, and the ratio of blacks killed by police versus the ratio of police killed by blacks.
However, we are constantly inundated by the media or by various representatives of the administration for racism exhibited by the police, the racism of “white privilege,” and the veracity of the Black Lives Matter organization. Liberal Democrats dating back to the Great Society days of Lyndon Johnson in the mid-1960s have promoted the idea that government could allegedly solve the problem of poverty that the black community has experienced. The following information very pointedly illustrates otherwise.
Let’s examine each of the points of discussion noted above.
The out-of-wedlock birth rate for blacks grew from 24 percent in 1965 to 64 percent in 1990 and 72.4 percent in 2013.
By comparison, the rates for white non-Hispanics were 3.1 percent in 1965, 18 percent in 1990 and 29.4 percent in 2013.
It is an important factor to understand that the family unit is a basic unit of American life. However, the family structure, particularly in the black community, is approaching complete breakdown in our urban metropolitan areas. It is an impossible burden for the mothers in the black community to maintain adequate leadership and guidance by themselves.
It is important to recognize the northern migration by black individuals that has occurred. Before 1900, 90 percent lived in the South, but by 1970, the majority of the black population had moved to the north. There are distinct differences in the black churches in these areas. However, one must know that feelings in the South that may well have been derived from the years of slavery were evident in their understanding of dignity, identity and significance. Keep these elements in mind as we proceed. As a result of this migration to the north, a large portion of the younger generation became disconnected from the church. By the end of the 20th century, attempts to address the African-American cultural core concerns were not met, according to a piece by Carl Ellis Jr. that appeared in July 2013 on The Exchange, a blog by Ed Stetzer.
At this point, I want to tell of a personal experience of mine that occurred in 1968. I heard of a black minister in Philadelphia by the name of Leon Sullivan, who was also on the board of General Motors. He had initiated a program called Opportunities Industrialization Centers that was attempting to help both youth and older unemployed blacks to learn trades and develop skills that would lead them to a better life.
At that time, I was president of the Tampa Rotary Club, and I convinced two of my fellow members to join me on a trip to meet the Rev. Sullivan. We went to Philadelphia and while we were waiting to see him, a reporter from Life magazine arrived to do a story on him. However, Sullivan left him waiting and took us in to discuss an idea I had to take this program back to Tampa to assist in guiding the black community into a more productive lifestyle. He was very interested in our ideas and sent us to his local center, where we discussed with his leaders the elements of the program.
Theirs was a three-stage program. The first one was called attitudinal change. Until an individual progressed through this stage, they were not permitted to go into any job skill program. Second was the job or trade skills and finally the employment readiness program. We thanked the Rev. Sullivan and went back to Tampa with the intention of starting this program.
I contacted the head of the Tampa Black Ministerial group and invited his group to have lunch with us at the Tampa Sheraton. The following week the ministers came and we explained that we would fund the startup and would help them to organize it, but it was our obligation to back away and leave them completely in charge. Much to our surprise, we were turned down flatly. In reflecting back on their apparent lack of interest, I cannot help but believe much of it came from their feelings of insecurity and perhaps memories of servitude.
Let’s next examine the high school graduation rates in some of the metro areas. In a report from 2011-2012, the following rates were reported from a blog from edweek.org:
Detroit, 20 percent; Philadelphia 24 percent;, New York City, 28 percent.
It should be noted that these rates have improved but not significantly.
Next let’s take a look at black-on-black crime, as reported in Wikipedia:
The Chicago Crime Commission reported in its Gang Book of 2012 that there were approximately 150,000 in gangs and 80 percent of all murders were gang-related. Nationally only 35.6 percent of gangs are black, but in Chicago the percentage increases significantly.
In addition, according to a July article by Aaron Handler on the Daily Wire website, 93 percent of black homicides are committed by other blacks.
Further, in a review from 1980 to 2008, 52 percent of all homicides were committed by blacks, while being only 13 percent of the population. An FBI report from 2011 to 2013 revealed that 38.5 percent of those arrested for murder, manslaughter, rape, robbery, and aggravated assault were black.
In Los Angeles, the black population is only 10 percent of the total, yet they commit 42 percent of the robberies and 34 percent of the reported felonies.
In New York City, where blacks comprise 23 percent of the population, they committed 75 percent of the shootings, 70 percent of the robberies, and 66 percent of the violent crimes.
Additionally a 2009 Bureau of Justice Statistics numbers show that in 2009 blacks were charged with 62 percent of robberies, 51 percent of murders, and 45 percent of assaults in the 75 largest counties in the nation.
In 2013, there were 6,000 black homicides, of which 258 (4.3 percent) were killed by the police, while 40 percent of the police officers killed were killed by blacks.
According to a Justice Department report, of the 2.2 million individuals who were incarcerated in 2014, 37 percent were black, says Wikipedia.
It is not surprising that the ratio of unemployment of the black population is over 9.5 percent as of the third quarter of 2015, and according to Bernie Sanders in a campaign rally in Portland, the black youth unemployment was 51 percent, as reported in a September 2015 piece by Louis Jacobson on Politifact.
Clearly, pouring out huge amounts of federal dollars has not solved this horrendous situation, and it is most apparent that the Obama administration has both ignored the root causes of this problem, while at the same time exacerbating the situation and heightening divisions between the races. The media have also been both complacent and inflammatory on this subject as well. It is indeed unfortunate that our first black president did not feel compelled to try to alleviate the problems that exist in the black community.
It is past time for the black leadership to come forward, appeal to the black community and encourage all of us to help with this festering mess. Family values, morality, education, job training and religious values need to be stressed by both the administration, Congress, government agencies, all elements of the media, and all of our citizens, regardless of our party leaning or affiliation.
Unless some utilization of programs such as OIC, along with us striving to reestablish the moral fiber of black families, is accomplished, I fear this unrest will continue to boil, and over time will become even worse.