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Black Lives Matter, Obama, and Race (longer version)

  

           The nation has been convulsed by riots and violent protests in a string of cities, a pattern of lawlessness and breakdown that does not bode well for the nation, the rule of law, or race relations.  In every case, President Barack Obama has exploited these events for political purposes, pouring fuel, in effect, on the fire.  The incidents involved encounters between police and inner city blacks, beginning with Ferguson.  They have since spread across the land to include Baltimore, New York, Minneapolis, Dallas, Baton Rouge, and most recently Milwaukee.  

            In truth it began much earlier, in the very first year of Obama’s Presidency, the beginning of his destructive march through our institutions, culture, and civil society, a pattern that befitted an individual who spent twenty years in the church of Jeremiah Wright, the well known bigot, America hater, and anti-Semite. 

            The first event was the mistaken arrest of black Cambridge Professor Henry Louis Gates in July of 2009, when Obama said that the “Cambridge Police acted stupidly” before he knew anything about the case.  In so doing, our first black President took up a narrative that he continues to promote.  This narrative defines modern liberalism, the Democrat Party, the media, the Academy, and the left in general.  It holds that America is institutionally and irredeemably racist, and no amount of progress will ever wipe the slate clean.  It maintains that there are no other explanations that account for disparities between blacks and whites.  Specifically, it points to alleged racism in our law enforcement and criminal justice systems, but it fans out to indict the whole of American society.

            The next incident, although not specifically involving police, continued the narrative along with the protests and riots that have now become hallmarks of the Obama years.  This was the killing of Trayvon Martin in February 2012, in which Obama, unable to resist tearing at the fabric of society, said, “If I had a son, he would look like Trayvon.”  Obama, who is half white and raised by white grandparents, has never been moved to make a similar comment after, say, a white police officer had been slain by a black man.

            More recently there have been a series of confrontations between police and inner city blacks, beginning in August 2014 in Ferguson with Michael Brown, the thug who attacked police officer Darrel Wilson, attempted to take his gun, and was finally shot and killed in self defense.  This led to the egregious “hands up don’t shoot” myth, a fabrication, debunked by the grand jury and subsequent Department of Justice investigations that cleared the officer of all charges.  There was Freddie Gray in Baltimore, a man with a long criminal record who died after being transported in a police van.  The riots that followed immortalized Democrat Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake and her infamous “space to destroy” comment.  It also introduced racial flame-thrower and State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby, who filed charges that included murder and manslaughter against six officers, three of who were black.  The officers were acquitted and all charges were dropped.  There was Philando Castile in Minnesota and Alton Sterling in Louisiana.  More recently, last August, there have been riots in Milwaukee over the shooting of Sylville Smith by police.  Riots and vandalism went on for days, yet the protestors were not incensed over the five blacks shot and killed by other blacks in Milwaukee that same weekend before the killing of Smith or the devastating numbers of black fatalities in Milwaukee’s 73% increase in homicides in 2015, the result of what Heather Mac Donald has called the “Ferguson Effect.”          

            Indeed, FBI data shows that violent crime is going up across the land – because of the Ferguson Effect, which results in police withdrawing from high crime areas.  In the first six months of 2015, murder has gone up 45% in Baltimore, 58% in St. Louis, 50% in Oklahoma City, 50%, 27% in Dallas, 44% in Houston, and 51% in Louisville.  There has been a 17% increase in homicides in the 50 largest cities during all of 2015 compared with 2014, the largest increase in violence in a quarter century.  

            In almost every encounter, Obama and other prominent Democrats and the media, have engaged in race baiting, stoking the flames of racial hatred in ways that have been destructive of the civil society and deadly to our police and communities. While decrying violence on the one hand Obama has given a wink and nod to its most violent proponents, chief of which is Black Lives Matter, the racist, black supremacist group that promotes cop-killing and, for good measure, anti-Semitism, an organization he refuses to condemn.  Instead, in his rhetoric, he has implied systemic racism in our law enforcement and criminal justice systems, smearing as racist our 18,000 police departments and 750,000 police officers many of whom work in inner cities and are black.  

            Seeing no less a figure than the President defending the unrest has sent a green light for more of the same.  The President’s rhetoric has indirectly contributed to a volatile atmosphere in which our police are being targeted for killing.  There have been two in NY, five in Dallas, three in Baton Rouge, and others.  Overall, fatal shootings of police are up 68% as of August 15 2016 compared with the same period in 2015.     

            Despite efforts by liberals to demonstrate racial bias, they have always come up short.  Instead, they have shown that policing, prosecution, and incarceration accurately reflect crime rates not bias.  Nationally, blacks were charged with 67% of all robberies, 57% of all murders, and 45% of all assaults in the 75 largest US counties in 2009, although making up only 15% of the populations of those counties.  In NYC, blacks commit over 75% of all shootings, 70% of all robberies while constituting 23% of the city’s population.  Blacks commit over 50% of all murders nationally, more than committed by whites and Hispanics combined even though blacks comprise only 13% of the population. (From Heather MacDonald) The problem is criminality not racism.

            But there is an explanation for the high crime and incarceration rates of blacks in America’s inner cities that the left chooses to ignore.  It is the failed social welfare policies of the Democrat Party and the left.  It is broken families and dysfunctional cultures.  It is fatherlessness and a soaring illegitimacy rate.  It is welfare dependency, educational failure, unemployment, poverty, the erosion of personal responsibility and morality, and bad life decisions.  It is the fifty-year inculcation since “Great Society” of a permanent underclass with underclass values, and the fragmented, crime ridden, impoverished communities it has spawned. 

            Race defines liberalism today and all that flows from it, an ideology of victimhood and grievance - and how to exploit it for money, votes, and political power.  The race baiting left has plundered this narrative, farmed white guilt, harvested the social pathologies of the black community, most of which have nothing to do with racism, and grown and prospered.  It has twisted the race legend into new shapes and forms to include other victim groups.  It has invested its energies in the victim fable, the slave and the oppressor myth, in all its varied manifestations, and won.  The victim-race narrative equals liberalism today.  The black community has largely followed its message; it has been led into a house of poverty and despair.     

            It is critical to challenge the Democrat Party and its miserable record of collapse and disintegration in our cities, which they have controlled for decades.  They should be condemned for the fate of so many in the black community under its rule.  Their ideology holds that there is no hope for blacks in racist America.  That the cards are stacked against them.  And that blacks require government assistance to survive.  It is a destructive message that conservatives must counter with the ennobling philosophy of liberty, private property, family and faith, free market capitalism, and self-reliance.  Twenty two trillion dollars since the Great Society has not made a dent in poverty.  Instead, it has created a permanent underclass with all its attendant dysfunction, which includes high rates of criminality and incarceration.  The leftist message of failure and dependency must be rejected for the sake of blacks, whites, and the entire country.

 

 

 

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