This month, I want to shed some light on a huge issue dividing conservatives and radical liberals: race. Many liberals accuse us of not wanting to and avoiding frank discussions about race. I say “challenge accepted! ” I’m going to try to write some articles on different issues involving race this month as an overarching theme…
*Trigger Warning*: Radical Liberals, you will get offended! A Lady of Reason takes no responsibility for the mind altering effects from your exposure to an actual opposing viewpoint after you read this article. 😉 Proceed at your own risk…
An issue that has been in the radical liberal agenda is the idea that since white people oppressed minorities, then they literally “owe” them reparations for the damage done. They argue minorities are held back by white oppression still, due to numerous past injustices that in my own metaphor, dug them into a pit that they now must dig out of to be on the same playing field as white people. This is one of the arguments mentioned for affirmative action is it’s a form of that reparation. But now, minorities have also demanded reparations such as welfare, food stamps, and other handouts due to white people forcing them into poverty.
Now, many conservatives and moderates pushed against this, as even though injustices happened in the past, in the present, much of the discrimination has been abolished formally, and there are plenty of resources to help break the cycles of poverty and crime. Why aren’t many minorities on the same playing field and achieve the same things as whites and a few exceptional minorities do? Some pro-reparation liberal arguments come in the form of white oppression forced them into the cycle of poverty, ghettoization and crime seen today, or white families have had centuries to build up wealth and privilege the minorities didn’t have the chance to get. Even some along the lines of we owe some minorities for stolen labor, like slavery, prison, and other exploitation from history. The issue is, what about today?
Let’s not deny it: history is full of past injustices we rightfully denounce now and have abolished, like slavery, segregation and all sorts of discrimination in housing and the job market. While no law can change all bigoted attitudes in society, it is illegal to formally discriminate against minorities or have slaves for that matter! I can understand in the immediate aftermath, people ought to have been proactive in giving minorities a leg up to catch up to where the majority was in life, but once on their feet, why haven’t they gone and ran with it?
One can try to drudge up the past ad-nauseum, but the past is past now. Yes, history affects our present, but it doesn’t have to define our future. Our present is shaped by what happened previously, but we can let the past go, and define our future on our terms the way we want it to be. Just because slavery existed for millennia through history, and much of this country’s, doesn’t mean it couldn’t be changed, and in 1865 it did for America. We had the power to say that’s no longer who we are, even if it was in our past. Our future from then on was slavery-free. The black community still cries victim over slavery and demands reparations for it today though! It’s been over a century, and yet, black people several generations removed who have never been a slave feel “victimized” by white people. They claim the legacy of slavery is still with them in poverty, crime and ghettos, but really? Why couldn’t they start to redefine their future too? They who were born free, never robbed of their labor or forced to be someone’s property have created mental chains and blame it all on white people! Why do they still need a “leg up” from slavery over a century ago? No black person currently alive today was ever a slave!
Now of course, I can hear the comeback now: “But there were much more recent forms of oppression!” The civil rights movement has been in the lifetimes of many alive today. The Jim Crow era of segregation and lynchings still is painfully, in the memories of many. But my argument applies here as well. We outlawed segregation. Lynching is called murder now. Black people can have the same jobs and housing as white people. Even a more recent painful past can be remedied by a redefined future. One can acknowledge and remember our painful past, but also look toward a brighter future now justice is being served. I am NOT denying inequalities exist to this day, but those are social biases, not legal mandates. Should those biases be addressed too? Of course! But the point is there are no laws keeping people back. Even so, the civil rights movement and the hey day of Jim Crow are fading into the memories of the elderly. In a few decades, that too, will be in the memories of those long gone. No millennial black person today can claim to be a victim of Jim Crow, or even many of their parents for that matter! Crying victim for something you never personally experienced is dishonest! “Trans-generational trauma”?(Yes, I’ve heard that term coined by the liberals!) Come on! Why can’t we acknowledge the wrongs of history, without being chained to them? Why not build the future we want to see, regardless of the past we didn’t?
Which leads me to the next argument: because of the past, the black community, for example, cannot get out of the cycle of poverty and crime, and it’s unfair to blame them as white people caused their misfortunes. However, going back to my previous argument, why not? It is one thing to say, for the sake of argument, they’re right, white people put the black community into poverty and disadvantage, but why now with help from many groups to break the cycle and anti-discrimination laws and affirmative action, can’t they help dig themselves out? It is one thing to be put at a disadvantage, forced down a deep hole of inequality one must climb out of to have a fair chance, but to passively lay there only to weep at your misfortune and demand others fix it all? Especially with the many hands to grab or ropes thrown down to you to climb out by people dedicated to help break the cycle, anti-discrimination laws, equal housing, scholarships for school, mentorship programs, or even affirmative action for starters!
The thing is, and this is pretty inflammatory to say out loud but here goes: They don’t seem to want to climb out. It’s easier to just take handouts like welfare and food stamps, never work an honest job then cry victim and have a pity party for past injustices you’ve never even come close to personally facing or being affected by. Yes, bias and discrimination exist, but I wonder honestly how much of it was influenced by a grain of truth to the hurtful stereotypes of the ghetto culture, crime, poverty, lack of respect for education or lazy welfare handouts. Playing victim you see, is the easy way out. Logic doesn’t play into any of this, just laziness and greed.
Many black people are in low income, dangerous ghettos. Gang activity is rife, people pop out kids they can’t feed, are addicted to hard drugs, drinking, on welfare from cradle to grave, for generations at a time, and don’t seem to care. Now certainly not all of them are like this, amazingly, there are black conservatives like Walter Williams who acknowledge this flaw! He even said it’s gotten worse now that welfare is so prominent. In his day, he said he knew far more respectable professional working class black people like you or I. He, like many wonder, what happened to those black people? The ones who did want to redefine their futures, not be chained to their past. Many black kids today bully fellow black kids who want to learn and go on to be professionals. They view them as a race traitor or “Uncle Tom”. Many black communities are complicit in gangs running their economy and “jobs” in town. They don’t care about having a high rate of fatherless kids who they can’t feed or clothe, and push on struggling school systems to raise. They don’t care to work even though they’re able bodied and minded to learn and earn a good salary for their families. Have you seen some low income neighborhoods? It’s a literal trashy ghetto with vandalism and filth!
Poverty is no excuse for that! Yes, you may be poor, but to trash your own home? Your own community? Plenty of white people are struggling to make ends meet, yet they keep decent tidy homes, don’t tolerate crime, work jobs to make their income, and raise their own kids! My paternal grandparents were poor blue collar folks for instance, who didn’t have much at all financially, yet they were able to keep a nice little house, raise two kids, one being my father, and valued education and sacrificed so both kids could go to college. They never once looked to crime for easy money, or took handouts when both could work. Just because you don’t have money, doesn’t mean you can’t afford some morals! Don’t say crime is for “survival” either! Plenty of people of all colors are very poor, yet only take what is absolutely necessary, and try to earn the rest. Plenty of people would rather be dirt poor, than commit crimes and lose their integrity and respectability as people.
Also, white people cannot be responsible for all of it! No white person is forcing another to trash their communities, pop out kids they can’t feed or provide for, take welfare instead of working, tolerate gangs and even welcome them, and drain the country’s resources. Believe me, that’s the opposite of what many white people, and others want! Now, the black community isn’t the only one freeloading and crying victim, but they have an extensive history of legitimate past wrongdoings they seem to not want to let go of in the present, thus making them example #1 for this article. Many look at black people with bias and stereotypes, for some who are none of what was described, unfairly, but I’d wager it’s because of the many who do drain our resources and invite crime. Black people who are decent human beings are hurt by this too. Being painted with the brush of the dysfunctional ones must hurt immensely and is a constant source of baggage they must fight against.
Let’s not forget too, other minorities were oppressed as well, yet are assets to this country, not leeches! The Asian and Indian communities are leading the way in the hard sciences and technology for instance. Why not the black (or Hispanic for that matter) community too? If we’re all equal in potential regardless of race, why can’t they? Other minorities overcame their challenges, why not them as well?
People in the black community who want a future, want to redefine their future in a positive light, must work hard to fight the stereotypes cast down by their fellows in the ghetto and in gangs just as much, and labeled as a race traitor and “Uncle Tom” for choosing success and a future over crime and poverty, just as much if not more than any white person’s bias. Many have tried to open their arms and lend those hands to help them get out of the pit of past oppression, poverty and crime, but as they say, you can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink it! One must meet them halfway in actually wanting to change for the better! We need more black leaders too, to encourage people to break the cycle, not just subsidize welfare for an easy vote or to be “cool”! I apologize to those in the black community who do not stand with this bottom of the barrel lifestyle, and are taking their futures in their own hands. We need more people like Walter Williams in this world, not the next generation of welfare recipients and gang members. We don’t “owe” people like that one cent! They owe us a community who builds up, not tears down our society! Black and white together, we need to stand against this!