The New World leaves old Prejudices in the Old World
Americans hated Catholics. And why not? Most Americans were British. In the 18th century. When Protestant Great Britain was forever at war with Catholic France. Since the Reformation, it’s what Protestants and Catholics did. Hated each other. You just did it. Eventually you would learn why. But by then you were already hating.
Also, in the 18th century, slavery was part of normal life. As it had been for centuries. Slavery was often the misfortune of a conquered people. Part of the social strata. Or simply an economic tool. Such as used in Mercantilism. As European powers established colonies, they needed bodies to exploit the raw material and send it back to the mother country. And the ‘godless’ people they were able to buy from African slave traders were perfect. These ‘savages’ were little more than animals. Struggling to live in a hostile environment. They were better off in slavery. In the New World they would have food and shelter. And their masters would protect them from their hostile environment. The way they saw it, they were doing them a favor. Or so went the prevailing thought of the day.
During the Revolutionary War, George Washington commanded an army made up from all the colonies. They were mostly Protestant. But it also included Catholics. So he had to tone down the anti-Catholic sentiment that was pretty pervasive among many of these British Americans. And then there was a march into Canada by General Benedict Arnold. To get the Catholic Canadians (once a French colony) to join the American cause. (They passed on the offer.) And so it was in the Army that the American cause transcended religion. For it was in the army where the Protestant fought side by side with the Catholic. As well as the free black. Who yearned for that liberty, too, that the Americans were fighting for. Giving Washington pause for thought. Protestant. Catholic. Black. White. They were all people. Americans. This thing they were fighting for was greater than the individual colonies. The New World would in fact be a new world. The prejudices of the past would be left in the Old World. And he learned that in the Army. Where America was truly born.
The Three Fifths Compromise Empowers the Planter Elite
It was many of these Army veterans that championed religious freedom. And the abolitionist movements. But the pull of the Deep South was strong. Their planter elite, though a minority of the population, dominated political power. Much like the landed aristocracy of feudal Europe. They had money, power and influence. Their view of the Revolutionary War was different than George Washington’s. They weren’t looking to build anything greater. No. They just wanted to get rid of the British. And go back to the way things were.
With the war won, that’s exactly what a lot of people did. Go back to the way things were. There were problems, though. War debt, for one. And a lack of unanimous consent. The Confederation Congress required a unanimous vote to do anything. Which was a rare thing. The sectional interests were just too strong. So in 1787, they gathered in Philadelphia to write a new constitution. And create a new nation. It wasn’t easy. During the ratification process, some holdouts agreed to ratify if they added a Bill of Rights. James Madison agreed to this and worked tirelessly in the first Congress to deliver on this promise. The issue of slavery? That was a different story.
The Deep South would join only if the subject of slavery was off the table. They agreed. Tabled it for 20 years. Give the South time to figure out how to end slavery. Then they settled on issues of taxation and representation. The majority of the southern population were slaves. If they couldn’t count them to determine representation in the new government, the Deep South would have no say in the new federal government. So they agreed on the Three Fifths Compromise. They would count slaves as 3/5 a person. It was a high price to pay for compromise. For it gave the planter elite of the Deep South a disproportionate vote in Congress. And in the Electoral College. Which meant that this minority in the Deep South determined much of American policy until the Civil War. Thanks to a large black population that couldn’t vote.
Liberal San Francisco: White, Right and Out of Sight
San Francisco is an interesting town. They don’t come much more liberal. Or whiter. Liberals are lucky if they’re 20% of the national population. But a good chunk of that 20% apparently lives in San Francisco. Nancy Pelosi coasted to reelection in 2010 with 80% of the vote even though her national approval numbers were horrible. Her favorable ratings barely broke 10%. In other words, the American people were sick of her and her far left liberal agenda. They voted a bunch of her cronies out of the House of Representatives, and her from the Speakership, transferring control from the Democrats to the Republicans for the first time in a long time. Her views are definitely not America’s views. But they’re clearly San Francisco’s views.
Of course, many of the good people of San Francisco think that the other 80% of Americans are just too dumb to know better. We exasperate them. For they are the enlightened people. The intelligentsia. The caring. And they were the first to drive hybrids. Even South Park ridiculed them for that. Calling San Francisco the smuggest place in America. Where they like the smell of their own farts. And they may very well like to smell their own farts. But you know what they don’t like? Black people (see Blacks and Republicans by Thomas Sowell posted 3/15/2011 on National Review).
The black population of San Francisco is less than half of what it was in 1970, and it fell another 19 percent in the past decade…
Blacks are being forced out of San Francisco — and out of other communities on the San Francisco peninsula — by high housing prices…
The black population in three adjacent counties on the San Francisco peninsula is just under 3 percent of the total population in the 39 communities in those counties.
It so happens that these are counties where voters and the officials they elect are virtually all liberal Democrats. You might be hard pressed to find similarly one-sided conservative Republican communities where blacks are such small percentages of the population.
So, in other words, rich liberals love to have black people vote for them. But they don’t want to live anywhere near them.
AFDC and Abortion and the Black Family
America changed in the 1970s. The sexual revolution was in full force. Women’s liberation. Abortion and birth control. And all the feel-good programs of LBJ’s Great Society to end poverty and racial injustice. The liberals were changing America. The black community. And the neighborhoods of San Francisco.
Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) caused an epidemic in children being born out of wedlock. Because the government was paying single women per baby they had. So they kept having babies. Because an inexperienced young man couldn’t get a job that would match the generosity of the government. And it was a lot easier than being a working single-mom. So kids grew up without a father. Spent a lot of time on the streets. Getting into trouble. This destroyed families in poor neighborhoods. Which also tended to be black neighborhoods. It was the worst of unintended consequences. But it sure did make the recipient of these benefits life-long Democrats. Because if you have no skills and a large family to raise, what else are you going to do but depend on those government benefits?
Of course, liberal policies weren’t all about having babies. They were also helping to provide a lot of abortions, too. To empower women. To fully liberate women and make them equals in the workplace. Because they could now do anything a man could do. Except pee while standing up. But they could fool around like a man. And not have to worry about the consequences. Just like a man. So with abortion, birth control and a sexual revolution going on, you can guess what a lot of people were doing. Having consequence-free fun. If you know what I mean. But much like AFDC, this liberation appears to have hit the black population especially hard. A black woman is three-times as likely as a white woman to get an abortion. And it is the only demographic where abortions exceed live births.
Abortion is a very controversial subject with data that is often politicized. Also, there may be other extenuating circumstances that result in these numbers. But it shows a trend. Liberal policies have unintended consequences. And blacks have suffered a disproportional share of these consequences.
The Democrat Party is the Party of Slavery and Institutionalized Discrimination
So what does this tell us about rich liberals? First of all, they’re mostly white. They claim that they are not the racists yet their actions indicate otherwise (San Francisco is mostly liberal and mostly white). Their views are a minority view. The 2010 midterm elections clearly showed that. Yet they wield some of the greatest political power. How do they do that? By pandering. To the labor unions. The public sector unions. The teachers. That usual bunch that benefits by liberal policies and liberal spending. And, of course, blacks.
When you look at the history, the Democrats haven’t been all that kind to black America. It was the Southern Democrats who did their best to perpetuate the institution of slavery. It was the Southern Democrats that institutionalized discrimination in the South following the Civil War. Yes, the Civil Rights Act was passed by the Johnson administration but it was the Republicans in the House and Senate that made that possible. The Democrats had majorities in both houses but about a third of their members were against it. Whereas only a fifth of the Republicans were against it. In the final House vote, all the Southern Democrats needed was to get 37% of the Republicans to vote against it to stop its passage. Instead, 80% of Republicans voted in favor of it. And then, of course, there’s AFDC. Thomas Sowell blames this (and the liberal welfare state) for destroying the black family. And the black abortion stats would probably be called genocide in another country. Some even call it that here.
Which brings us back to the teachers. Because when you look at these numbers, it is clear that liberal policies have not been good to black families. But the teachers are in tight with the liberals. I mean, with their generous pay and benefit packages they get without the taxpayer having a say in their contract negotiations, why wouldn’t they? The government takes care of them and they take care of government. They emphasize multiculturalism, fairness and progressive thought. And downplay history. The Founding Fathers play minor roles in today’s textbooks. But students today can all tell us that the Founding Fathers owned slaves. But they seem to forget the part about Abraham Lincoln, the Great Emancipator, being a Republican. And that the freed blacks voted for Republicans to protect themselves from racist Southern Democrats.
Meet the New World. Same as the Old World.
And then along comes Barack Obama. The ideal liberal candidate. And first black presidential candidate. Because of our public education there is a lot of white guilt over slavery. So a lot of white America would probably vote for Obama to assuage that guilt. Which included a large part of those crucial independent voters. Things were looking up. But could he deliver the black vote? He graduated from Harvard Law School. Columbia University. He’s an Ivy League guy. Very professorial. He could lecture the people. So well that it offended some. The Reverend Jesse Jackson said then candidate Obama talked down to black people. He didn’t like that in the least. Even said that he wanted to “cut his nuts off.” So it wasn’t a sure thing. The black vote.
Of course, Obama won that election. He took 53% of the vote to McCain‘s 46%. And the black vote? All but 4% voted for Obama. No one gets 96% of the vote. Unless you’re a dictator in a third world country. With blacks making up approximately 12% of the U.S. population, it is clear that the black vote determined the election. For if the black vote followed the same percentage break down of the general vote, McCain would have won the election.
So here we are, some 150 years after the Civil War and the black population is still being exploited by the political elite. The planter elite maintained power for half a century thanks to the Three Fifth Compromise. And liberal Democrats today use the liberal welfare state to make as many blacks as possible dependent on government. Use their control over the public school system to hide the failure of their policies. Their destruction of the black family. And their racist past. To maintain their political power. And minority rule. Some things never change.
Meet the New World. Same as the Old World. Sadly.