The ‘black door’ out of poverty

By Harold Pease - Contributing Columnist

Ferguson, Detroit, Baltimore, Dallas and now Milwaukee. Each seemingly has pent up anger directed first at its own race and now at law enforcement. “Black lives matter,” some chant, but most black homicides are by black perpetrators, not white. Blacks, we are told, now do half of all murders in the United States. Four constants in these cities are evident, all: are predominantly black, are on fire, and are driven mostly by young angry black men.

But the constant ignored most by the establishment press is that each of these cities has been governed by the same political party for the last fifty years and, despite promises otherwise, has never delivered anything but poverty, subpar schools, crime and unemployment. In political science these cities may be as close to a controlled experiment as one is likely to get; five inner cities predominantly the same race, widely geographically distributed, ran by one political party during the same five-decade time frame — all with the same results. Theoretically we could impose the same progressive agenda on any inner city and have the same results.

Enter Donald Trump with his Milwaukee address to first reestablish law and order and then, “To every voter living in the inner-city, I’m running to offer you a much better future and a job.” This may be the “black door” out of poverty.

Progressive policies of the last 50 years, most notably those encouraging dependency, have done much to return the blacks to subservience. Would not peace and a job be the hand up that the black communities need rather than just throwing subsistence government handouts, as has been the solution of the past?

Today unemployment for blacks is nearly twice that of whites and for black youth in the inner cities it has been known to soar to as high as 60 percent. Moreover, the U. S. Census Bureau listed the overall poverty rate in 2011 at 15 percent, but for blacks it was 27.6 percent. Overall household income was $50,054, but for blacks it was $32,229. The Heritage Foundation found that “only 56 percent of blacks graduate from high school.” The average black man has little to hope for in a world where seemingly all other races appear to have much more.

It didn’t used to be this way. According to black economist, Walter Williams, prior to the progressive socialist policies of the last 50 years, “black unemployment was lower and blacks were more active in the labor market than they are today.” In 1910, for example, “71 percent of blacks over nine years of age were employed, compared to 51 percent for whites.” This trend stayed strong through the 1960’s, “black male labor force participation in every age group was equal to or greater than that of whites,” he says. Although black schools, prior to the 1960s, were characteristically modest in funding and supplies, they “often produced student bodies with high average IQs and graduated scholars of note.”

Black economist Thomas Sowell, in his book “Education: Assumptions Versus History,” agreed, “In short, no stringent ‘elitism’ is necessary to achieve high-quality education. It is only necessary to … exclude the tiny fraction (of students) who are troublemakers.” Black poverty was steadily and noticeable declining.

What destroyed all this? It was the socialist notion, most fully incorporated by the Democratic Party, that the government will take from those who have and give to those who have less in exchange for their vote. The War on Poverty is the philosophy that largely led a race into the same type of dependency that they had worked a hundred years to escape after the Civil War and had made notable advancement. A trillion dollars a year now feeds this monster—15 trillion since the program was begun to buy the poverty vote by President Lyndon Johnson in 1964; but unfortunately, with no measurable end to poverty as promised. Statistics show poverty to be proportionally about the same as when the program was begun.

Kurt Williamsen in an article, “Do Progressive Policies Hurt Black Americans?” described how this played out. Welfare “spending contributed to overall black poverty by encouraging single-parent, female-headed households…. Young black women often had children out of wedlock, beginning a cycle of enduring poverty and welfare, wherein they relied on welfare as a main source of income, as did their children. Welfare provided more money for young women with fatherless children, on average, than the same young women could have made if they were employed.” It also destroyed families. If she got married she would lose the benefits. Today, ”73 percent of black babies are born to unwed mothers” and well over a third of the race is on welfare. Unfortunately, “welfare provided an incentive for young black women to raise fatherless children and collect welfare, leading to the epidemic problems with black crime, black schooling, black unemployment and black poverty.”

So we return to the angry young black man using violence against his own race to obtain what he wants. The progressive Democratic policies of the last fifty years have consistently harmed the black community. A Trump victory may offer him the first and only door out of what clearly did not work in 50 years and never will.

Dr. Harold Pease is an expert on the United States Constitution. He has dedicated his career to studying the writings of the Founding Fathers and applying that knowledge to current events. He has taught history and political science from this perspective for over 30 years at Taft College. To read more of his weekly articles, please visit

By Harold Pease

Contributing Columnist

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