The Old “Grey Lady” just can help Herself

The “Old” Grey Lady- courtesy of The Daily News

The ‘old’ Grey Lady, the New York Times just can’t help itself. There have been at least 3 stories that have been published in their pages that demonstrate that it can’t just report the news and not show bias.

It finally admitted that yes, there were weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) in Iraq and there may still be some to be found. Despite of years of “Bush lied and people died” and there were no WMD’s in Iraq. it has now decided that there were WMDs and that some may still exist, today.

In a very long article the NYT describes the quantity of WMDs found and relates some instances in which our troops were affected by these weapons. Quoting the article:

From 2004 to 2011, American and American-trained Iraqi troops repeatedly encountered, and on at least six occasions were wounded by, chemical weapons remaining from years earlier in Saddam Hussein’s rule.

In all, American troops secretly reported finding roughly 5,000 chemical warheads, shells or aviation bombs, according to interviews with dozens of participants, Iraqi and American officials…”

So Bush was right there were WMDs in Iraq and there were well hidden that the UN inspectors were not able to locate them. But that is not what the Grey Lady wants to say, instead they disassemble:

The United States had gone to war declaring it must destroy an active weapons of mass destruction program. Instead, American troops gradually found and ultimately suffered from the remnants of long-abandoned programs, built-in close collaboration with the West.

This is just a play on words and does not negate the fact that despite what was repeatedly said, Hussein had a large cache of WMDs at his disposal. The “active” part is real nice touch yet as Gabriel Malor explains that was never the rationale. Not in the sense that the NYT is implying.

Why would the NYT debunk years of Iraq had not WMDs? Well, here is the answer:


Imagine, an Obama as the Candidate he told us he would be


The euphoria and heady days of 2008 and the candidate for President Barack H. Obama are long gone. For many the Hope and Change that was promised has given way to cynicism, disappointments, blame shifting, name
calling, and to many horror at how things have turned out. For most, except the most partisan out there President Obama and his Administration have been a failure. We can argue as to the causes but the fact remains. Imagine what could have been had Candidate Obama had become President Obama. Before the election there were some doubts about Obama, veteran newscasters Charlie Rosen and Tom Brokaw expressed some of those in October 2008, and though some like Limbaugh have mischaracterized the conversation, the substance was that Obama was a somewhat unknown quantity. In the end they did as much of the MSM did in regards to Obama in 2008 and they just downplayed or ignored their instincts, choosing instead to join the bandwagon and helped Obama win the Presidency and a sweeping majority in Congress to boot.

Right after the election there were indications that something could be wrong, when Obama started doing press conferences with the non-existent seal of the Office of President-Elect of the US, a concocted title that he and his transition team would go on to use until his inauguration. But it was a meeting 3 days after his inauguration on January 20th, 2008 that set the tone for the rest of his Presidency. It was at this meeting with the heads of Congress that was meeting to discuss the stimulus package proposals, that President Obama told Senate Minority Whip Jon Kyl of Arizona, “I won” and House Republican Whip Eric Cantor, “elections have consequences!”. The meeting which was supposed to foster bi-partisanship, had turned into, something else. The Republicans which had been battered and powerless, having lost Congress and the Presidency would now be unified, and would ride the Tea Party wave into control of the one-half of Congress in 2010, effectively stopping Obama’s agenda and our current situation. Let us Imagine what it could have been had the uniter, moderate, consensus builder, bi-partisan, post-partisan Candidate that was elected in 2008 had actually been what was advertised.

  • 2009- After assuming office with the economy still mired in a Recession, Obama held a meeting with Congress leaders for proposals to help the country still mired in a Recession. As a result a package of tax-cuts and spending on infrastructure was devised, with the cost of package being off-set in part by the winding down of operations in Iraq.
  • In June, he expresses his full support of the Green Revolution Movement in Iran, supporting the Secular student and young Iranian movement to replace the Islamic Republic.
  • Obama also supported the Honduran Supreme Court, that sought to stop the President of Honduras Manuel Zelaya, who with the help of Hugo Chavez, was trying to change the Honduran Constitution to allow him to run for re-election which the Constitution did not allow. Following a similar tactic that the Presidents of Venezuela’s Chavez had employed to keep himself in power. The same thing was done in Ecuador and Nicaragua who changed their Constitutions to allow the President to run indefinitely,  de-facto dictators.
  • In July, when asked to comment on the arrest of Professor Henry Louis Gates, a friend, Obama replied that it was a local law enforcement issue and as President it would not be his place to take sides.
  • In August he proposes a budget that starts to remove elements from the TARP and ARRA legislations to bring his baseline budget more in line with the Budgets before both emergency legislations.
  • In September he urges Congress to forgo the Mathew Shepard legislation as there was already Hate Crimes laws that were applicable not to mention State sanctions that did not require another Federal intervention.


  • 2010-After the loss of the Senate seat held by Ted Kennedy for 47 years after his death in January, President Obama formally asks his fellow Democrats in Congress to work with Republicans on the Health Care Bill. The people had sent a message and he got it, the present bill was not what the people wanted.
  • After announcing the end of Combat Operations in Iraq, due to the success the “Surge” in Iraq, Obama promises to work on a new SOFA agreement to monitor and assist the new Iraqi government past the current date of 2011. He explains that this small force was needed to ensure the hard-fought gains of the American Serviceman and Women during their intervention in Iraq.
  • In Afghanistan, the “good war”, he follows the advice of his military for a similar surge that proved a game changer in Iraq.

Now I was going to continue and to list other areas where Candidate Obama would have acted differently from President Obama, like after the loss of one half of Congress he would moderate his policies and be more inclusive, or how he would act more forcefully when confronted by malfeasance by members of his Cabinet (ATF, NSA, IRS, HHS, DOJ, VA, etc all had scandals). Perhaps, he would not insert himself into the George Zimmerman-Trayvon Martin shooting, while ignoring the mass killing going on in Chicago and other cities. He would not intentionally disregard laws that he was opposed to, simply because prosecutorial discretion allows him too, but at the end of the day as the former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton exclaimed;

What difference at this point does it make?

As I was writing this blog piece, I was following the events of the plane that went down in the Ukraine. It appears that it was shot down, by whom? It is not clear, it could have been the Russians, the Russian backed rebels or even the Ukrainians who also have the capability. Whatever the circumstances a plane bound for Kuala Lumpur from Amsterdam with almost 300 people had been shot down with not survivors. Among the dead were 23 Americans, over 100 children and this was his statement;

‘Before I begin, obviously the world is watching reports of a downed passenger jet near the Russia-Ukraine border. And it looks like it may be a terrible tragedy. Right now we’re working to determine whether there were American citizens on board. That is our first priority.’

‘And I’ve directed my national security team to stay in close contact with the Ukrainian government. The United States will offer any assistance we can to help determine what happened and why. And as a country, our thoughts and prayers are with all the families and passengers, wherever they call home. ‘

Obama then jarringly quickly returned to his prepared remarks.

‘I want to thank Jeremie for that introduction’ he said. ‘Give Jeremie a big round of applause.’ ‘It is great to be in the state that gave us Joe Biden. We’ve got actually some better-looking Bidens with us here today.  We’ve got Beau and his wife, Hallie, are here. Give them a big round of applause. We love them.’  …’Jack Lew’s signature is actually on your money,’ he said, ‘although it’s kind of illegible. We teased him when he first became treasury secretary that he was going to have to fix his signature a little bit because it looked just like a caterpillar running along the bottom.’

In all his statement regarding the event was about 40 seconds long before he turned to the teleprompter and his speech about transportation and boosting infrastructure spending. Regardless of the reason for the crash, a mechanical malfunction, pilot error, or some freak natural event the crash and death of 300 individuals IS a tragedy. That this might be the result of human intervention and deliberate whether in error or not, President Obama’s disconnect was in full display. It was a shameful display with jokes and political attacks against the Republicans. The total disregard for human beings is nothing new to President Obama as displayed by his reluctance to address the current border situation. The masses of young children and adults coming in the country after a hazardous journey were many are dying on the way. Young girls are being raped to the point that the DHS Secretary Johnson is testifying that girls are given birth control before they embark to the US and when they arrive as reported here. Not only that but the law that the Administration is claiming that is forcing them to accept the illegals the “William Wilberforce Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2008” is not applicable to as many as 85 percent of the cases because the children are being smuggled into the country, in many instances with a parent,  and not victims of trafficking, making them ineligible for the protections afforded by the law. It is just another instance of the Obama Administration expanding the parameters of a law to suit its political purposes. You can read the Center for Immigration Studies explanation of the law, here.

Whether Obama the Candidate was just a dream foisted by a pliant and cheerleading MSM,  he was a good great con man who suckered the nation or a combination of both, maybe he just never existed, it was a projection in most of Americans. That is probably closer to the truth but just Imagine if that person existed was in charge today, just Imagine. If there is a lesson here is that something that seems to good to be true, usually is and that is particularly the case in politics. We need to vet our candidates well, or else they will become President or Senator or Congressman, and we want the candidate to be that person we choose, not an empty Bear in a suit who is now loose.

Tell Me Lies, Tell Me Little Lies

In 1987, Fleetwood Mac released the song “Little Lies” it would be their last top 10 hit in the US. As the song goes the singer would rather hear “little lies” than the truth. We as a country are willing to accept the fantasy, the little lies than to inform ourselves.

If I could turn the page
In time then I’d rearrange just a day or two
Close my, close my, close my eyes
But I couldn’t find a way
So I’ll settle for one day to belive in you
Tell me, tell me, tell me lies

We allow others to re-write history, to re-arrange events, to re-define people, all to conform, to get along, to not offend, to question lest we be labeled sexist, racist, extremist, Conservative, out of touch or just plain crazy.  In seeking this conformity we forget that Little Lies have a way of becoming Large Lies and that while that little lie does not affect you personally,  at this time, those big ones will one day.

Tell me lies
Tell me sweet little lies
Although I’m not making plans
I hope that you understand there’s a reason why
Close your, close your, close your eyes
No more broken hearts

It is easier to accept the lies, nobody wants to be heartbroken. It is hard to accept that you been duped, that you have been lied to , that the world is a dangerous place and it cannot fit into easy understandable, predictable and controllable ways. The real world is harsh, it is cruel, it has no pity and accepts no excuses or good intentions.

A few months ago, Ezra Klein former columnist for the Washington Post, got together with other writer and columnist to launch a new website  Its aim is to explain complex problems in a short column or a 5 minute video. I was awestruck that the idea, it was perfect for today’s generation. A generation that has the attention span of a 30 second commercial. At the same time I was floored that such an idea could get the backing he requested $10 million dollars and that such a thing was even contemplated. The sheer brazenness and arrogance of Klein and his collaborators to think that they would succeed at this venture was and is amazing.

I guess that is the whole point, we like little lies, as any attempt to explain complex problems so callously would entail. How else could think that explaining the Iraq problems, or the IRS scandal or even the Obama Administrations failures could be explained in such a short concise manner.

But, we Americans and most residents of what is call the First World are nothing but arrogant. We are so arrogant that many believe that not only can we affect the weather but the entire global climate.  We recede the oceans, save the whales and polar bears even if they are not in any danger from changes in the weather.  We have deified ourselves, that we know exactly what time conception occurs and the difference between a clump of cells and what would be a human being. We know that if someone is biologically a male but feels in his heart that he is a female that this is as it should be. I think therefore I am, I am a female or male then that is all there is to it. Biology be damn, after all with some hormone treatments and a little nip here or there we can be whoever or whatever we want to be.

This is how a little know Jr. Senator from the State of Illinois is elected to the Highest Office in the US. We know he attended Columbia and Harvard Law School but for someone who has been declared the smartest President in our history, we have no idea what his grades were.  Does anyone think today that if he was an ace student, considering how narcissistic he has been, that we would not be constantly reminded of how well he did in school? This was a pretty lie we told ourselves to at least justify to our selves voting for an unknown entity with really sharp creases and the ability to read a speech from the teleprompter.

Women told themselves lies about Sarah Palin, what “real” woman is still married to his high school sweetheart, 20+ years later. Is not like she attended an Ivy League school, she graduated from the University of Idaho, Idaho.  Palin not only worked but had more than 2 kids, one who had Down Syndrome. I know she was the youngest and first female elected to governor in Alaska but we know that there had to been some shenanigans for that to happen. Worst of all she was unabashedly a follower of that cult of paternalistic, gay hating, anti-abortion group of people; the Christians.

We were told that we could spend ourselves out of a recession, that we could “reset” with Russia, that we could negotiate with terrorists without detriment, that we could replace all of our energy needs using 13th century technology and solar batteries. We were told that we could create a new health care program which would insure everyone, but if we like our plan we could keep it, if we like our doctor we could him to and not only would it not cost us more but it would save us $2500 a year.

We were told that a YouTube video which few had seen, not only caused mass protests and riots in Egypt but led to the attacks on our Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, who were told we had help dispose of its leader to prevent him from defending hi self in a revolution. We were told that these people who were revolting were Moderates, who really liked us and would help the country.

We were told that a few rogue IRS agents in an office in Cincinnati were responsible for denying, delaying, releasing information on non-profits groups that would be opposed to the Administration. Now that we know that this is not exactly the truth, we are told that the e-mail communications of the lead official in charge of supervising this are lost due to a computer failure, but not just hers but 6 other officials which would also have been involved all suffered catastrophic computer failures so their e-mail communications are lost as well.

Too many have accepted the little lies, too many have made excuses, have attempted to clarify, to tell us that what we were told, was not what we thought but something else entirely.  Regardless many say it is for our own good, if it didn’t work it is not because of them, the liars, but those who resisted the lies, yes they are the ones responsible. Because it is not a lie if you believe in it, if you close your eyes, you can make it true.

That is why someone who has lived for 18 years on  residences provided free of charge, while earning 4 times the median family income can go on National TV,  and with a straight face claim that she understands what Americans are feeling, because after 18 years of receiving room and board from us, she was broke from debts she acquired to buy 2 new homes while waiting for multi-million dollars windfalls in book deals that were in the works.

This is how our President can claim to emphasize with single parent homes, completely forgetting that he grew up with his grandparents who paid for his elite private school in Hawaii while his mother continued to live in Indonesia. This is how a 6′ + tall young black male, Trayvon Martin on his 3rd 10 day suspension from school in a little over half the school year, can become the martyr for all young black males. How a portly short Hispanic man, of mix heritage can become the most hated man in the country and have part of his heritage brushed aside because it is inconvenient.  How his parents which had him bounce from home to home and who was left alone with son of his father’s mistress for the weekend are now the epitome of the perfect parents for our country.

Is not that politicians lie, that is expected to a degree.  Some lie by omission, some over promise, some lie our ignorance, some for expediency like I said it is expected to a degree. What I do expect is that there be consequences for continued lying.  That we could be more discerning and not so cheap with our trust. I hope that when little lies become big lies, that we stop reelecting those that abuse our trust, and it is not just politicians but the media, or anyone else.

It is up to us, to make that happen, accountability in government or anywhere else begins with us. As Thomas Jefferson is credited with saying

“The government you elect is government you deserve.”

H.L. Mencken said the same thing, but better:

“People deserve the government they get, and they deserve to get it good and hard.”

Tell me lies
Tell me sweet little lies


Race- Getting wrong again- The Case against Reparations


Kevin Williamson writing for the National Review gives his take on the same subject, here’s an except:

It may very well be the case that African Americans will never, no matter what policies are enacted, catch up economically with whites. Even assuming that invidious racism were an entirely negligible factor, it is likely that economic development will tend to proceed along broad racial channels if, for example, people of various ethnicities tend to largely marry within their ethnic group, live in neighborhoods largely populated by co-ethnics, and engage in other social-sorting behavior that is racial at its root but not really what we mean by the word “racism.” If that is the case — and it seems that it is — then initial conditions will be very important for a very long period of time.

And that would be true even if there had been no slavery and no discrimination. Imagine, for example, that rather than having been brought to the colonies as slaves, the first Africans to arrive in the New World had come as penniless immigrants in 1900. If their incomes grew in the subsequent century at the same rate as those of white natives, then a century later they’d still be as far behind as they were when they arrived. Income gaps have been closed and closed quickly by some immigrant groups — notably European Jews, Vietnamese immigrants, and Indian immigrants — because their incomes across the first few generations grew much, much more quickly than the native rate. And though the hostility that often met these immigrants is not comparable to the experience of slavery and African Americans’ subsequent repression, it is worth appreciating that Jewish and Asian immigrants have not always been welcomed with universal warmth. The black experience is unique within the context of American history, but it is hardly unique within the context of the experience of other racial minorities in other societies throughout history.


The election season must be near, it is easy to tell as articles such as, the Atlantic’s  Ta-Nehisi Coates’, “The case for reparations“, get published and become the fodder for all the talking heads in the MSM. While it was not his intent he makes a good case as to why we don’t need reparations.  In his attempt to demonstrate the uniqueness of the “Black Plight” he rather shows how similar the experience is to that faced by other groups of immigrants and migrant worker who have thrived and persevered despite the obstacles they originally faced. After quoting the Bible, John Locke and another anonymous source he begins his essay thus:

“The state’s regime partnered robbery of the franchise with robbery of the purse. Many of Mississippi’s black farmers lived in debt peonage, under the sway of cotton kings who were at once their landlords, their employers, and their primary merchants. Tools and necessities were advanced against the return on the crop, which was determined by the employer. When farmers were deemed to be in debt—and they often were—the negative balance was then carried over to the next season.”

Peonage or debt servitude was very common and it was not limited  to blacks but many white farmers had similar arrangements and similar results. A real example of State sponsored Peonage would be like that which was instituted by the Spanish Crown in 1873 when it abolished slavery in Puerto Rico. Under the new law that emancipated the slaves, the slave owners were compensated by the government for their former slaves but it also decreed that the former slaves must work the land of their previous owner for a minimum of 3 years.  They would not be “free” until that time expired.  Though they would be compensated for their work, they could not leave until the peonage had been paid.  Those that did not stay on the land that was provided to them, as many did, without title to the property until their time was up would lose claim to the property and became fugitives. That is not what Mr. Coates describes, but a very common happening to this day of farmers borrowing money for expenses using the projected future crops, with the land as collateral.  If the crops failed or prices deviated many farmers found themselves losing their land to their lenders or bank.  But fallow land is not profitable so many lenders resorted to share-cropping , that would allow the farmer to remain and work the land while debts were paid and crops was the only collateral available to them at that point. In Mississippi for instance while 70+% of black farmers were sharecroppers so were 40% of white farmers.  By the 1920’s  the price of cotton was on a free fall which meant perpetual debts for both black and white farmers. Coates likes to use small anecdotes in making his case, but they leave out information,  is misleading,  incomplete or unverifiable. His anecdote on how the Ross family lost their farm due to back taxes, for instance does not have a date only that it was when Mr. Ross was a child.  He then talks about a story by the AP in 2001 detailing 406 victims throughout the South that the story determine were documented thefts of black properties.  Sad as that may have been 406 “thefts” out of the millions of farmers that existed in the South is hardly indicative of anything. Again he does not mention the story by name, or authors or provide a link. He goes on to detail how Mr. Ross was a smart kid but the better school was to far to walk and return in time to work the fields, this strikes me as a decision of convenience for him and his family. Whether the white kids had access to a school bus or not is immaterial as he was not prevented from attending this new school because of  busing, schools were segregated, but because it would be inconvenient to the family. The same thing happens with Coates’ anecdote about Mr. Ross horse. The story is meant to garner sympathy for a young child. But, does it do that.  Examining the story it is very strange that if the point was to relieve the kid of the horse that they would pay anything for it. Further, if you do a simple search about the prices of a colt,  you find that $17 is about the  price you would pay in 1933 for a 2-year-old colt.  A 6 month-old horse was worth about $8, he could buy 2 for the price of the one he lost or sold.  I can’t help but wonder if because, this was 1933 and the 4th year into the Depression that having a horse for leisure was an extravagant luxury during that time. Cotton had been falling from their high pre-Civil War highs when the South produced 3/4 of  the world’s cotton. In 1919 cotton hit its high 35 cent per bale before the bottom fell out of cotton prices. By 1933 the price was down to 5 cents per bale.  In fact the sharp decrease in prices of cotton in the 20’s led to the First Great Migration of blacks farmers to the North. Looking back at historical data, the avg. price of cotton between 1900 and 1945 was 14.6 cents,  from a high of 35 cents in 1919 to a low 5 cents in 1933 so the prices the Ross family was being paid are certainly within the range of what others were getting regardless of race. Cotton prices would not hit 50 cents a pound until the mid 1970’s, all of this information is readily available for Mr. Coates if he wanted to educate or inform the readers of plight of the farmers at the turn of the century. Living in a farm is hard work, regardless of race.  The years at the turn of the century were hard on farmers there is no need to try to insinuate that things were harder because of race.  The same hardships were faced by White sharecroppers as Black sharecroppers. Phil Robertson of Duck Dynasty show, was suspended from his show on the A&E network,  was suspended  for his comments on gay relationships but in that same article he also said this:

“I never, with my eyes, saw the mistreatment of any black person. Not once. Where we lived was all farmers. The blacks worked for the farmers. I hoed cotton with them. I’m with the blacks, because we’re white trash. We’re going across the field…. They’re singing and happy. I never heard one of them, one black person, say, ‘I tell you what: These doggone white people’—not a word!… Pre-entitlement, pre-welfare, you say: Were they happy? They were godly; they were happy; no one was singing the blues.”

There were calls by some to label Robertson for saying this, as it is against the prevailing story from people like Mr. Coates that Blacks left the South because of discrimination which drove them out of their farms and homes. The truth is a little more nuanced than that.  Is interesting that Mr. Coates choose to showcase Mr. Ross’ story and not someone from another southern State.  Mississippi was the first State to elect a Black Senator in 1870 and the second in 1875.  Their new Constitution in 1868, the  convention adopted universal suffrage; did away with property qualifications for suffrage or for office, a change that also benefited poor whites; provided for the state’s first public school system; forbade race distinctions in the possession and inheritance of property; and prohibited limiting civil rights in travel.   The reforms only lasted for 22 years until 1890 when a new constitution disenfranchised most blacks and poor whites but by that time fully 2/3 of Mississippi’s Delta  farmers where black. Blacks kept coming to the Delta area and it was not until first agricultural depression culminating in the early 20’s that the first Great Migration of  Blacks to the North occurred.  As falling prices of Cotton caused many Black and White farmers to sell their land in order to pay-off  debts.  Though many did remain as sharecroppers for another 20 years. Was discrimination part of the decision to leave the Delta farms and seek better fortunes in the North, probably but it was not until the economic conditions got dire that many made that decision.  The North needed labor, the South had excess labor as with Migration of workers economics was the driving factor. Mr. Coates continues with Mr. Ross’ life by detailing his efforts to buy a home in Chicago,  using  a Contract for Deed.  He tries very hard to make the practice seem nefarious, but that is far from the case. Contract for Deed or Land Contracts are still used to this day.  It provides people who have lack credit or have limited resources and opportunity to own a  property and are used quite frequently.  Are there risks involved sure for both the buyer and the seller. Depending on how the contracts are written a buyer risks losing his investments if he loses his job or some large expense like the boiler breaks down and he is unable to pay for the repairs.  Owners risk potential buyers leaving the property before the contract is finished in deplorable conditions that would require a capital expense before the property could be sold again. Either way Mr. Ross was able to purchase his home using this method despite his complaints against the way by which he bought the property. The complaint about lack  of access to equity in the house while on the Contract Sale is true, but if as Mr.Ross did, and buy out his home the equity did not disappear only his access to it while paying for the house. None of this would strike any other large group of immigrant out of the ordinary, Germans, Poles, Jews, Italians, Irish, Puerto Ricans, Cubans, Dominicans, etc all faced restrictions and lack of access to financing, areas where they could not buy a house at all and were steered to certain areas at one point or another. Mr. Ross’ story should be one about perseverance and success not as case for reparations.  It seems such a shame that rather than celebrating his achievements we are told to see his story as one of deprivation and envy because his journey should have been easier in Mr. Coates’ opinion.

“Contract sellers became rich. North Lawndale became a ghetto…” “According to the most-recent statistics, North Lawndale is now on the wrong end of virtually every socioeconomic indicator. In 1930 its population was 112,000. Today it is 36,000. The halcyon talk of “interracial living” is dead. The neighborhood is 92 percent black. Its homicide rate is 45 per 100,000—triple the rate of the city as a whole. The infant-mortality rate is 14 per 1,000—more than twice the national average. Forty-three percent of the people in North Lawndale live below the poverty line—double Chicago’s overall rate. Forty-five percent of all households are on food stamps—nearly three times the rate of the city at large. Sears, Roebuck left the neighborhood in 1987, taking 1,800 jobs with it. Kids in North Lawndale need not be confused about their prospects: Cook County’s Juvenile Temporary Detention Center sits directly adjacent to the neighborhood.”

This is one of Mr. Coates’ most spurious charges, he does not explain how Black home ownership created a ghetto with all the connotations that come with that charge.  If home ownership created a ghetto in North Lawndale, then perhaps the problem is the pressure that is put on Blacks to own a home when renting is better option.  Instead of pushing for higher rates of home ownership, especially of those on the fringes we should discourage it until they a stronger foundation (long-term employment, financial security, marriage, stability, substantial down payment) things that many first-time Black buyers lack, but feel pressure to commit to buying a home nevertheless. There segregation was policy practice against Blacks, as it was other groups but does policies are not in force now and have not been for decades.  Today’s segregated communities are the result, in many cases of governmental policies.  Free or subsidize Housing that directs the poor to certain neighborhoods, welfare policies that penalize recipients if they get married, obtain a job or move to another area and the lack of accountability of those that game the system. Making matters worse, has become permissive of lifestyle choices that while at pains to say it, sociologists have now recognized that the family unit is the a main contributor to many of the ills that Mr. Coates feel will be cure by re-desegregation.  Including lower crime rates, higher wealth and incomes.  It is the reason why Latinos the group most often compared, comparatively to Blacks have surpassed them in practically every category even though back in the 60’s they trailed Blacks and Whites by wide margins. Today Latino’s are reaching parity with Whites in all categories and are poised to supplant Whites as the largest Ethnic group. The rest of Coates’ long essay does not break any new ground, he tries to correlate poverty with crime as an excuse to the Black real problems with high crime in their neighborhoods.  One statement he made I want to address.  He writes the following:

“From the White House on down, the myth holds that fatherhood is the great antidote to all that ails black people. But Billy Brooks Jr. had a father. Trayvon Martin had a father. Jordan Davis had a father. Adhering to middle-class norms has never shielded black people from plunder. Adhering to middle-class norms is what made Ethel Weatherspoon a lucrative target for rapacious speculators. Contract sellers did not target the very poor. They targeted black people who had worked hard enough to save a down payment and dreamed of the emblem of American citizenship—home ownership. It was not a tangle of pathology that put a target on Clyde Ross’s back. It was not a culture of poverty that singled out Mattie Lewis for “the thrill of the chase and the kill.” Some black people always will be twice as good.”

Yes, Trayvon Martin had a “father”  and mother as did Jordan Davis and Billy Brooks Jr. but what they lacked was a family unit. All three were sent to stay with their fathers because they had become too much to handle for their respective mothers.  Being a sperm donor is easy, being a father is much harder.  Showing up after problems manifest themselves is failing in your duties as a father and should not be celebrated. Ethel Weatherspoon, like Clyde Ross bought a house in the North Lawndale area is she also to blame for the condition of the neighborhood today? Of course not, and neither are the rapacious speculators that sold them the house.  They wanted the American Dream to own a house and they did, using the method available to them as many others of limited means did before. That is the problem with Mr. Coates’ essay, with the exception of the despicable period of slavery, the hardships and triumphs  are the same that many other ethnic groups faced and are still facing. The Black experience is only singular in their estimation, as is their feeling that because of slavery their road should to success should have been paved, rather than a curvy, rock-strewn one with detours along the way.

The road to success is not straight. There is a curb called Failure, a loop called Confusion; speed bumps called Friends; red lights called Enemies;caution lights called Family. You will have flats called jobs. But, if you have a spare called Determination; an engine called Perseverance; insurance called Faith, and a driver called Jesus, you will make it to a place called Success!!- Anon.


The Zimmerman Obsession

In a nationally televised speech President Obama, who was trying to make a case for military intervention in Syria had this to say;

And so to my friends on the right, I ask you to reconcile your commitment to America’s military might with a failure to act when a cause is so plainly just.

To my friends on the left, I ask you to reconcile your belief in freedom and dignity for all people with those images of children writhing in pain and going still on a cold hospital floor, for sometimes resolutions and statements of condemnation are simply not enough.

In case you missed it, the President’s friends on the Left believe in freedom and dignity (Trayvon Martin and his family),  while those on the right are only committed to America’s military might (gun-toting Zimmerman). That is how the Zimmerman story was sold to the public, a young child should be free to walk home from the store and not worry about gun-toting, trigger-happy vigilantes bullies.  That this did not bear the closest resemblance to the truth of that night is immaterial, the truth is what you make of it.

Some of my friends who identify with the left, are put out that members of the Zimmerman family are now embroiled in right-leaning media outlets, after all they are left leaning and they supported Zimmerman.  But there lies in the problem with labels, you can be socially liberal and conservative in other manners or vice versa.  Polls have consistently shown that Blacks as a group are socially conservative but liberal in towards government policy.  This makes sense since the feeling is that government liberated them and it is that government that keeps them that way.  Again, truth has little to do with it but the perception that counts.

Right now George Zimmerman is a celebrity, though not of his own making, anything he does or say is picked up as news.  But should it? As if the last 18 moths had not been hard enough, he now faces an uncertain future.  He has no money, no job (or prospects of getting one), no home and pretty soon no marriage.  I have tried to avoid the impending divorce of the Zimmermans as I see it as another victim of other people’s agenda, who have use the incident to profit themselves.

Recent revelations that some family members were actively plotting against Zimmerman’s lawyer, Mark O’Mara, the lack of closure in the case, the impending unresolved at that time case of perjury against his wife, and all the outside influences providing advice, counsel, reclamations were due to have an effect.  It is hard to imagine how it had to be for someone to spend over a year. on a 6am to 6pm curfew, hiding, trying to avoid looking at the news, your future in limbo and all your plans shattered.

Zimmerman has lost more than any can imagine, and I can see why young Shellie Zimmerman may want to branch out in life.  Trayvon Martin, though dead, has a Foundation in his name, streets are named after him, as may laws, he universally seen as a victim, the Lowell Observatory in Flagstaff, Arizona wants to name an asteroid after him, the TM061 which had been discovered in 2000 but had remained unnamed. But none of these is enough, the sharks are still circling for blood.

Whether you feel that Zimmerman instigated the incident by following Trayvon or not, the fact remains that Zimmerman is a victim of a vicious attack that at least in his mind left him with no choice but to pull out his gun and shoot. Of a society that glamorize violence, sexism, nihilism but is too afraid to say, hey that is just too much.  By a society, that divides everything into left or right, rather right or wrong.  By a society who is skeptical about religion, but believes in vampires, ghosts and aliens.  A society that willingly blinds itself to the truth, if it is inconvenient, it the right people say so.  A society that allows ourselves to be divided by emotion, disregarding consequences.  It was emotion that drove Trayvon to attack Zimmerman and to continue attacking him, even after John Goode had told him to stop.  It is emotion that the President was using to try to get the Nations approval for a military strike. just as it was emotion that the prosecution was counting on to convict Zimmerman.

It is these same obsessive emotions that keep us hounding Zimmerman, let’s give the man a break.


Zimmerman a conversation on History

A few weeks ago after  George Zimmerman was pronounced not guilty by the jury and uproar that this had cause the President had the following to say;

But I did want to just talk a little bit about context and how people have responded to it and how people are feeling. You know, when Trayvon Martin was first shot, I said that this could have been my son. Another way of saying that is Trayvon Martin could have been me, 35 years ago.

And when you think about why, in the African-American community at least, there’s a lot of pain around what happened here, I think it’s important to recognize that the African-American community is looking at this issue through a set of experiences and a – and a history that – that doesn’t go away.

Now, this isn’t to say that the African-American community is naive about the fact that African-American young men are disproportionately involved in the criminal justice system, that they’re disproportionately both victims and perpetrators of violence. It’s not to make excuses for that fact.

Although, black folks do interpret the reasons for that in a historical context. They understand that, some of the violence that takes place in poor black neighborhoods around the country is born out of a very violent past in this country. And that the poverty and dysfunction that we see in those communities can be traced to a very difficult history.

History as in an event or events that had passed.  We know the shameful history of slavery, segregation and Jim Crow that was persistent in the country, just 50 years ago.  Discrimination was institutionalize for all blacks in the country, how severe would depend on the geographical location but it was inescapable.  Let’s flash forward 50+ years and evaluate things today, as they are not, as they were, perhaps we can determine how we can how we can continue to move forward because the Zimmerman verdict still says that we have a way to go.

Jonathan Cohen completed his 3 part series of articles regarding the Zimmerman case and its aftermath, in his last installment he spoke primarily about the history of Blacks in this country since the passage of the Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act which finally  brought equality to blacks   at least in a legal form. He writes;

        … In spite of the passage of the civil rights laws of the 1960’s and progress made by blacks over the last 50 years, events such as the Zimmerman trial reveal to what extent we are still two separate societies. The explanation that would be given by most black commentators is the persistence of racism. The basis of disparate impact law is the notion that if imbalances exist in the numbers of minorities in an occupation, the starting assumption is that the reason is racial prejudice. By analogy, if a white Hispanic shoots an unarmed black teenager, the reason is racial animus and the burden of proof is on the white to prove otherwise beyond a reasonable doubt.

But maybe this picture is wrong. Perhaps the sources of higher crime rates for blacks, greater percentage of out-of-wedlock births, numbers incarcerated, lower graduation rates at all levels, poorer scores on standardized measures of academic achievement are not the result of institutional racism. What if whites have little ability to affect these problems, particularly if blacks claim a monopoly on the allocation of funds to solve them? For example, if blacks insist on black teachers in black schools, there is not a lot whites can do about improving educational outcomes.

The year 1965 was also a year of departure for the civil rights organizations. Having accomplished its greatest goal, the dismantling of legal segregation, it was faced with the task of how to move forward to advance race relations and help advance the situation of black people in America. What is not usually acknowledged or remembered, let alone understood, is what happened next. Black separatism suddenly became respectable. Freed from the pressures of pleasing whites to simply survive, black identity movements began to thrive. Blacks stopped wearing their hair to look as much like white people as possible as Afros replaced straightened hair. And politically, blacks decided they had to define their own organizations starting with the civil rights organizations that had always been coalitions with sympathetic whites…

…Since racism and sexism were assumed to be the cause of any deficiency in skills, only whites confronting their prejudices and unconscious biases could overcome the deficiencies. Responsibility for improving the educational performance of black youth fell on whites. This never made sense. Anyone involved in teaching knows that it is impossible to teach people who are not invested in the learning process. The deficiencies in English and math skills of black high school graduates were real. For purposes of closing the educational gap between whites and blacks, there was little whites could do unless the students were sufficiently motivated to do the extra work to overcome their lack of academic preparation…
Read more:

Like my previous post,, Mr. Cohen details how the Civil Rights Movement which had been a multi-racial attempt to achieve equality for everyone got transformed into a separatist and isolationist movement, that aimed to separate Blacks and Whites.  The results of which we are now experiencing.

The “historical” excuse has been used to explain any disparities between the races from political affiliation, poverty, crime, high rates of single mother households, drug use,  A closer historical look at our Society is warranted to see how or if this is true.  First of all, I  am not denying the issues that affected the country 50 years ago, or attempting to minimize its effects on Blacks and other minorities, because clearly they were affected.  I am trying to raise the issue of whether in addressing those problems, our Society went astray somehow. Perhaps then we can rectify the issues, without losing the gains that were accomplished.

To that end, I want to discuss an article by Charles Murray, written a little over a year ago, called Belmont & Fishhook.  For those that don’t know Mr. Murray co-wrote the book the Bell Curve that aimed to show that intelligence, and class, were determined by race and were generic.  He relied heavily on IQ tests which drew criticism as to their real worth in determining “mainstream intelligence” but some of it findings were generally accepted like:

  • IQ scores have high predictive validity for individual differences in school achievement.
  • IQ scores have predictive validity for adult occupational status, even when variables such as education and family background have been statistically controlled.
  • There is little evidence to show that childhood diet influences intelligence except in cases of severe malnutrition.

Since then the field of epigenetics has grown and more is known about the human genome, which has lent some more evidence that some environmental issues can affect the way some genes react, producing more or less on some enzymes that can affect human behavior and traits.

In Belmont & Fishhook Mr. Murray compares two fictional towns, although Fishook is a neighborhood in Philadelphia and provided the statistics for the comparison, from 1960 and today.  While the focus of the essay is what happened in the White population, he does impart figures of the Black community for comparison, it is in those comparisons that most of the prevalent history is found. He breaks the study into 4 areas; Marriage, Industriousness, Honesty and Religiosity. He uses this to conclude that there are 2 new classes of people in the US, that are separate from the rest of Society, one that is the ruling elite and the other a forgotten class, that are different from the rest.

…As recently as half a century ago, Americans across all classes showed only minor differences on the Founding virtues. When Americans resisted the idea of being thought part of an upper class or lower class, they were responding to a reality: there really was such a thing as a civic culture that embraced all of them. Today, that is no longer true. Americans have formed a new lower class and a new upper class that have no precedent in our history. American exceptionalism is deteriorating in tandem with this development.

America has never been a classless society. From the beginning, rich and poor have usually lived in different parts of town, gone to different churches, and had somewhat different manners and mores. It is not the existence of classes that is new, but the emergence of classes that diverge on core behaviors and values—classes that barely recognize their underlying American kinship…

In 1960, extremely high proportions of whites ages 30–49 in both Belmont and Fishtown were married—94 percent in Belmont and 84 percent in Fishtown. The unquestioned norm in both neighborhoods was marriage. In the 1970s, those percentages declined about equally in Belmont and Fishtown. Then came the great divergence. In Belmont, marriage among prime-age adults stabilized during the mid-1980s and remained flat thereafter, standing at 83 percent in 2010. In Fishtown, marriage continued a slide that had not slackened as of 2010, when the percentage of married whites ages 30–49 had fallen to a minority of 48 percent. What had been a 10 percentage point difference between Belmont and Fishtown in the 1960s stood at 35 percentage points in 2010. The culprits—divorce and failure to marry in the first place—split responsibility for the divergence about equally.

Another aspect of marriage showed just as great a divergence: the percentage of children born to unmarried women.Frightened though politicians and media eminences are to say so, nonmarital births are problematic. Children who are born to unmarried women fare worse than the children of divorce and far worse than children raised in intact families even after controlling for the income and education of the parents. The technical literature on that topic is large and damning. The literature on what happens when large proportions of children within a neighborhood are born to unmarried women is less extensive, but the coincidence between that phenomenon and communities that have fallen apart, whether they be in the inner city or rural America, suggests that a large proportion of nonmarital births within a community constitutes a social catastrophe.

In 1960, just 2 percent of all white births were nonmarital. When the Vital Statistics first gave us the mother’s education in 1970, 6 percent of births to white women with no more than a high school education—women with a Fishtown education—were out-of-wedlock. Or to put it another way, 94 percent of such births were within marriage. By 2008, 44 percent were nonmarital. Among the college-educated women of Belmont, less than 6 percent of all births were out of wedlock as of 2008, up from 1 percent in 1970.

Those are the figures for the White community the black community has been hit harder,  to the point that only 30% of births are nonmarital.  He mentions the frightened politicians, but of what? Well, the feminists that grew out of the era and declared that men were optional.  As an irony, most of the higher educated feminist of the period went on to marry and have children, as the stats illustrate but those in the lower class who also followed did not.  This is specially evident in the black community were the majority of households with children are female single parent homes.  Last year a survey by the Washington Post revealed that black women are most likely to accept, condone single parenthood than any other group by 35% points.  They are also the least likely to consider marriage important.

The primary indicator of the erosion of industriousness is the increase of prime-age males with no more than a high school education who say they are not available for work—they are “out of the labor force,” in the jargon. That percentage went from a low of 3 percent in 1968 to 12 percent in 2008, rising steadily during the boom years of the 1980s and 1990s when the labor market had plentiful blue-collar jobs available for anyone who wanted to work. Even those who had jobs worked less—in 1960, only 10 percent of employed Fishtown males worked fewer than 40 hours per week. By 2008, that percentage had doubled. In Belmont, the percentage working fewer than 40 hours per week went from 9 to 12. Again it needs to emphasized: These reductions in work hours occurred in years when men could find work for as many hours as they wanted to work.

Again Mr. Murray figures are for the White community, the figures for the Black community are even darker.  Some areas of the country, for instance the rate of unemployment for young black youths is 60% which the current recession just made worse.  Up to 30% of black males are “out of the workforce” currently, some have criminal records which make getting a job difficult, others just lack the training or education needed to get a job.

Ever since criminology became a discipline, scholars have found that criminals are overwhelmingly drawn from working-class and lower-class neighborhoods—Fishtown. But in 1960, crime was low and the existing differences between Belmont and Fishtown did not impinge on daily life. The real Fishtown in Philadelphia, for example, was an extremely safe place to live in the 1950s (as we know both from a contemporaneous sociological study of the real Fishtown and the living memory of those who grew up in Fishtown in those years). Doors were routinely left unlocked. Children were allowed to play unwatched by their own parents, who knew that neighbors were keeping an eye on them. In the rare instances when a crime did occur, the people of Fishtown knew where to look for the offenders, and often dealt with them without bothering to call the cops.

The surge in crime that began in the mid-1960s and continued through the 1980s left Belmont almost untouched and ravaged Fishtown. From 1960–95, the violent crime rate in Fishtown more than sextupled. When we can first break out imprisonment rates in 1974 (after crime had already been increasing for a decade), there were 215 imprisoned Fishtowners for every 100,000 persons ages 18–65. By the time of the most recent survey of prison inmates in 2004, that number had grown to 965. The comparable figures for Belmont were infinitesimal and flat (13 in 1974, 27 in 2004). Furthermore, the reductions in crime since the mid-1990s that have benefited the nation as a whole have been smaller in Fishtown, leaving Fishtown today with a violent crime rate that is still 4.7 times the 1960 rate.

Black middle class neighborhood throughout the country have disappeared, replace by lawless zones.  Leaving a new class of citizen in its place. One who is less educated, less industrious, more promiscuous, less likely to obey the law and more dependant on government for it daily subsistence.  Christopher Orlet calls it a culture of Poverty as he describes his  experiences of the 2 years he spent living in the inner-city;

The culture of poverty is many things. Actually it is an accumulation of things. Having one of those things doesn’t necessarily mean you are part of that culture. One characteristic of the culture of poverty is the single-parent household. But there are many middle class and even upper class (though fewer) single-parent households that are doing just fine. That is because they have resources unavailable to the poor. Like savings. Lawyers. Reliable transportation.

But if you are a single parent with multiple children by multiple fathers, and a high school dropout, with a record, then chances are you are part of that culture. If you move to a new rental every six months, yanking your kids out of school after school, and if you do drugs in front of your children, and sell your food stamps for cash, then chances are you are part of that culture. If you are 20 years old, living with your grandmother, with no interest in ever getting a job, or getting married, or doing much of anything, chances are you are part of that culture. If you do not have a kitchen table, but you do have a big flat screen TV, and when the social worker comes to visit someone yells, “The social worker is here, go get the light bulb,” then chances are you are part of that culture.

When I moved into the inner-city, I hoped to gain some insight and understanding of the poor and their situation. Two years later I left feeling the situation is intractable. Everything the professional uplifters do for the poor is but pruning the branches, instead of hacking at the roots of the problem. For the underclass to escape the culture of poverty they would have to cease doing most if not all of the above, and I don’t see that happening.

Besides, as I have written before, too many of the underclass enjoy the culture of poverty. They would feel horribly out-of-place in a tony subdivision where they would have to work to make a house and car payment, instead of drinking beer all day on the stoop ― they don’t even have stoops in the suburbs. They would have to cut their lawns and keep the trash and noise to a minimum. What fun is that? In the inner-city you can do whatever the hell you want. You can even shoot somebody, and chances are no one will rat you out, because that is the code of the inner-city streets, and people there hate the cops more than they hate the drug dealers.

Read the rest here;

How do you change a culture that has been for years told that they are a victim? That dreams are for fools unless the government hands you  a freebie. A Culture that tells you that unless you can dunk, run fast or rap a song, failure is all you will ever attain. A culture that glamorize violence, tells young women that they are only good for one thing, the gratification of males. A culture that calls anything successful White and as such out-of-bounds.  Who perpetuates  racism, sexism, misogynistic behavior.  Well we can start by forgetting the PC crap we have been told for years and we begin to call a spade a spade.  Trying to sugar-coat things when they are clearly wrong and bad for you and society has gotten us to where we are.  It is time to start publicly shamming those that perpetuate such behavior.  Russell Simmons in his letter to Don Lemmons said that it was good for the young to create their own language and use to communicate but I ask Mr. Simmons who is very successful, what good is for the young to create their own language, when they are failing at school and nobody outside their neighborhood will understand them?

History has dealt the black community a bad hand, there is no doubt of that.  Use this past history as an edge to move forward, not a clutch to be left behind.

Racial profiling, prejudice and bigotry, why the Race Card is maxed out.

Bloomberg, a national publication used the following headline in a story a few days ago; “House Republicans Set to Defy Obama Are Mostly White Men,”.  Which begs the question, why they deemed it relevant to focus on the race and gender of the people in Congress opposing Obama? Is this another of those whistle the left is hearing to proclaim some sort of hidden racism.  Are they implying that those that are opposing the President are only doing so because they are white?  Is Bloomberg racially profiling the Congressmen?

Then there is this a fellow blogger from Australia ask this; Was it racial profiling?

Apparently not according to officials but a case of snitching.  The 13-year-old that got the beat down had snitched on one of the 3 for attempting to sell him drugs earlier in the day.  In hindsight someone should have noted that they might ride the bus together and  there could be problems.

A lot talk recently from the President on down about Racial profiling and Racism as a result of the George Zimmerman Not Guilty verdict in the killing of Trayvon Martin.  There have been howl of outrage, calls to replace laws to make it more possible for the prosecution to convict people, for the repeal of the Stand Your Ground laws, though they did not play a part in the case.  Some are calling to make it illegal for private citizens to racially profile as it is for government agents, cops, etc.

So what is racially profiling and it is something that needs our attention to the exclusion of other problems in the US but particularly to the black community?  It racially profiling the same as Racism or worse? Racial profiling at its worst is prejudging a race of people and assigned them a characteristic or group of characteristics that are not exclusive of the every one of that race.  It also used to describe Ethnic profiling as the same.  For example, all Asians are considered to be great at math, which may be true for some but not all Asians.  Another would be to say that all Mexicans are immigrants, or someone who sees a Spanish surname and assumes that you speak Spanish or that English is your second language, the last two being examples of Ethnic profiling.

Most forms of profiling even racial profiling are harmless, but sometimes the prejudice behind the profiling can become such that it becomes bigotry, and it affects how some people react to others, in some cases with disastrous effects.  As it was with slavery  and later the Jim Crow laws or Jews and the Holocaust. There are many other examples of where profiling a people led to great tragedy, most recently Bosnia and Rwanda come to mind.  In the US the issue is the profiling of certain young black males and minorities as dangerous.

Here’s the rub statistics show that this may be the case, certainly not for everyone but for enough to make the prejudice last and stick.  As a father of 2 young black men, this concerns me, which have made me try to ensure that my kids, understand and behave in a manner that is contrary to the stereotype.  I cannot get upset a people for behaving in a way that instinctual, while I don’t do ensure on my part that my kids are acting accordingly.  If I allow my kids to act and behave like thugs, who is to blame if they are seen as thugs.  Racial profiling is not the problem, humans are reacting to what too many young black males are doing.

In France the issue is young Muslim males, in Russia is young disaffected white males, so the issue is not racially profiling but behavior profiling, but those this rise to the level of bigotry or racism?  If you listen to civil rights leaders like Sharpton, Jackson or the NAACP they know so, but from my personal experience that is not the case.  In my estimation people are behaving to this the same way they behave all around the world in the face of young predators.

As modern humans we do not share all the same characteristics as our earlier ancestors. We don’t depend on instinct to make decisions we use observation and reasoning. Sometimes we read books about a subject or activity and depend on the observation and reasoning of others. As social creatures we share information, it is the sharing of this information, much which have been gathered by the observation and reasoning, sometimes of others that have allowed us to survive, to thrive and be the dominant species in this world. That is not to say that the observations and critical thinking have always been right, in fact many have been wrong but with time they have evolved ensuring our survival.

Each day is a struggle for survival, though it may be something that we don’t think about consciously, most  if not all our daily tasks serve the purpose of continuing our survival for another day.  Things we do in the course of a normal day such as eating, drinking, working so that we have money to eat and drink.  Exercising so that our bodies are fit, reading to calm our minds and entertain, bathing to wash away the daily grime and keep microbes in check just about everything we do daily can be tied to our quest for survival.

The night was specially scary for our ancestors as the darkness allow our predators, who were biologically more capable of functioning in the dark, some had better night vision, others had other senses that allowed to take advantage of the dark and would make us an easy prey.  It cause us to become more communal, as there was safety in numbers, we manage to control fire which not only brought us warmth in the cold but also helped to keep the predator away.  As our civilization advanced the tables were turned we not feared the night, and those predators were now our prey.  But with this advancement a new predator appeared, one that was more cunning, resourceful  and worst that any other prey that humans had come up against.

That prey was of course, other humans.  As our civilization progressed the need for communal living and help was abated.  We did not need to move only in groups to ward off predators and prevent becoming dinner.  We could live alone and apart from each other, with the knowledge that except under very rare circumstances there would be no animal predators just lurking to eat us. That worked fine for animal predators but for human ones not so much. We needed new ways to combat the new predator, our homes became impregnable castles in many places, we carry pepper spray, noise makers and guns.  We are told by the police who are tasked with suppressing these predators to travel in groups, use well-traveled routes in essence behave as our ancestors did in other to survive. As our ancestors did in that long bygone era, we have to learn who is safe, who is not, where it is safe to go, where it is not.

We need to know who is the predator and how not become a victim of one. Being able to distinguish friend from foe, and knowing which animals could provide food and which to avoid was something that is ingrained in us.  It is an ability that allowed us survived and build our civilization.  But in today’s civilization were are being asked to forget that which has served us so well, by surrendering to Political Correctness.  

There have been much talk about racial profiling, racism and Stand Your Ground laws, SYG for short, all while avoiding why this happens, and nothing really happens in a vacuum.  Many people don’t know this but the word “racism” did not become part of the English Vernacular until at least 1935.  Before then we use a word that is has a more appropriate meaning to what people mean now, when they use the word racist, bigot.  Though the word has a religious origins meaning a religious hypocrite as it is still use in Italian “bigotto”, it became to used to describe someone who is intolerant of someone because of prejudice or bias against that person or group. Racism on the other hand is the belief that one’s race is either superior or inferior to another race which leads to actions in accordance of that belief.

Let’s put that in the context of what the President Obama said in the aftermath of the Zimmerman verdict, and the human instinct that allowed us to survive all this time;

There are very few African-American men in this country who haven’t had the experience of being followed when they were shopping in a department store. That includes me.

There are probably very few African-American men who haven’t had the experience of walking across the street and hearing the locks click on the doors of cars. That happens to me – at least before I was a senator.

There are very few African-Americans who haven’t had the experience of getting on an elevator and a woman clutching her purse nervously and holding her breath until she had a chance to get off.
That happens often.

The implication of the President was that these actions were the actions of someone who was racist, but if we examine them they hardly rise to the level of bigotry, much less racism.  Department Stores owners follow people all the time for a variety of reasons, is the President saying that security follows or watches a white person that is prudent but watching a black one is racist.  Having had the experience of Managing a retail establishment, I would like to inform the President that in my experience the shoplifter at retail establishment, those that like to stuff little items in their bags are almost always white, if a black person is followed it is not because of the danger of stolen goods but for other suspicious behavior.  For instances they are tracking customers to pick their pockets.  Putting that aside in those communities were there are few blacks, it is still racism if  a store owner follows someone, it he doing it out of spite and bigotry or because he is trying to protect his business and those customers that come to his establishment?

The clicks on the car doors are they really because you are approaching and their has been a rash of carjacking in the area, by people who looked very much like you, until you became a Senator and started dressing differently,  As for the old woman clutching her purse and holding her breath is this because of racism or someone who is fearful and hoping that she does not become a victim of a predator.  Being in an elevator in a small enclosed spaced is terrifying enough but being along with a large stranger, more so.  But is this racism?  It is even bigotry?  Or it more likely, that it is a self-fulfilling prophesy, of those that see racism in the shadows, and interpret every action as such.

Nothing happens in a vacuum,  if a black shopkeeper follows some young black males is he being a bigot against his people or is he acting prudently to protect his business.  A black woman who clutches her bag under the circumstances described by the President is she also being bigoted, or perhaps someone who knows that she could become a victim at any time.  This is not to say that racism does not exist in the true meaning of the word.  But racist are all colors and not just white or white Hispanic as the PC establishment would have us believe.  It is evident all around us though few recognize for such, because we have been indoctrinated into thinking only white on black.

A few years ago,  Jeremy Lin an Asian American Harvard grad, became a sensation in New York when he became the starting point guard for the team, leading the team to a streak of victories.  What many don’t remember is the many black players and commentators that called him a fluke,  and that there were many black players that did what he did and better but were not getting the same type of publicity.  That is racism, the belief of their race superiority over the Asians ball playing skills.  It is the same with many European basketball players that come to play in the NBA, too often their role is of bench-warmer and they were given little opportunity to fail of succeed over comparable black players who were performing the same.  Sports racism is rampant in the US, though it is not recognized.

Racism exists and it will always be around, because we are all human, thinking and believing that we are superior to others in one way or another is just a way of group identity.  The issue is that most of the problems that are called racism are not, but what a reasonable person would think in a set situation.  Cops in NY, don’t stop and frisk more blacks and minorities for their jollies, they do so because it is an effective way to prevent crime and catch criminals, as it is shown by New York city being the safest large city in the country and the world.

Nothing happens in a vacuum,  people will continue to act in a way that will aid their survival, not because they are racist, or bigoted but because history has shown that being prudent and acting accordingly in the face of the threat of danger, can mean you live another day.  It is why calling every action a form of racism has exhausted the Race Card.   The problem will not be solved by ignoring the cause and people’s attitude and prejudices will not change until the cause is address and change becomes permanent.