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Too Big To Fail Democrats and Race

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"We're Owed and They Aren't"

by Christopher Chantrill
March 21, 2008 at 11:49 pm

WRITING in The American Thinker Ed Kaitz tells of how he got to know the immigrant Vietnamese shrimp fishermen of the Louisiana’s Gulf Coast.

When they arrived in Louisiana the refugees had no money (the money that they had was used to bribe their way out of Vietnam and into refugee camps in Thailand), few friends, and a mostly unfriendly and suspicious local population.

They did however have strong families, a strong work ethic, and the "Audacity of Hope." Within a generation, with little or no knowledge of English, the Vietnamese had achieved dominance in the fishing industry there and their children were already achieving the top SAT scores in the state.

So why was it, Ed asked a casual black acquaintance, that these Vietnamese had come to America and, become, without friends and influence, “within a generation, so successful?” And why was it “so difficult to convince young black men to abandon the streets” and build lives like the Vietnamese immigrants?

The answer was shocking.

"We’re owed and they aren’t."

Well, words are cheap. The trouble is that this “we’re owed” attitude is probably at the root of most black social pathology: the 70 percent of black babies born to single mothers and the abysmal performance of blacks in school. After all, what’s the point of sucking it in when “We’re owed and they aren’t?”

After the great catharsis of the civil rights movement when white America confessed its racist sins, blacks had a choice. They could forgive their white oppressors or they could torment them. Under the tutelage of white liberals and black nationalists they chose to torment.

Wrong choice.

It was wrong, of course, because forgiveness is at the center of our Christian culture. It is especially appropriate to remember this during Holy Week, when we recall how God sacrificed his Son for our sins and forgives the sins of the world.

But it is also wrong at a practical level because it destroys and retards the advancement of blacks from their status as an oppressed people.

When you come to the city you come as the member of a tribe, one of the Gentiles. Living in a tribe, scratching out a living on the land, tied to the land in serfdom or slavery, you rightly mistrusted everyone outside the tribe or outside the village. The outsiders are, after all competitors for the vital land you occupy, the land that gives you life.

But in the city, things are different. In the city you prosper not because you have the best land but because you serve your fellow citizens better with products and services that they want and need. In the city you prosper not because you prudently mistrust the brigands down the road but because you prudently enlarge and extend your circle of trust. You establish a reputation for trustworthiness and you seek out those who are trustworthy.

So long as American blacks sit in their ghetto of mistrust, so long as they cling to the motto of “We’re owed and they aren’t,” so long will they fail to journey from the wilderness of racism and rage to the Promised Land of trust and love and come at last to their great reward of full citizenship in this great America.

This week in his much noted speech, Barak Obama sent out a message loud and clear.

It’s still: “We’re owed, and you aren’t.”

And that’s a shame.

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Christopher Chantrill blogs at www.roadtothemiddleclass.com.  His Road to the Middle Class is forthcoming.


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Responsible Self

[The Axial Age] highlights the conception of a responsible self... [that] promise[s] man for the first time that he can understand the fundamental structure of reality and through salvation participate actively in it.
Robert N Bellah, "Religious Evolution", American Sociological Review, Vol. 29, No. 3.


Taking Responsibility

[To make] of each individual member of the army a soldier who, in character, capability, and knowledge, is self-reliant, self-confident, dedicated, and joyful in taking responsibility [verantwortungsfreudig] as a man and a soldier. — Gen. Hans von Seeckt
MacGregor Knox, Williamson Murray, ed., The dynamics of military revolution, 1300-2050


Civil Society

“Civil Society”—a complex welter of intermediate institutions, including businesses, voluntary associations, educational institutions, clubs, unions, media, charities, and churches—builds, in turn, on the family, the primary instrument by which people are socialized into their culture and given the skills that allow them to live in broader society and through which the values and knowledge of that society are transmitted across the generations.
Francis Fukuyama, Trust


What Liberals Think About Conservatives

[W]hen I asked a liberal longtime editor I know with a mainstream [publishing] house for a candid, shorthand version of the assumptions she and her colleagues make about conservatives, she didn't hesitate. “Racist, sexist, homophobic, anti-choice fascists,” she offered, smiling but meaning it.
Harry Stein, I Can't Believe I'm Sitting Next to a Republican


Liberal Coercion

[T]he Liberal, and still more the subspecies Radical... more than any other in these latter days seems under the impression that so long as he has a good end in view he is warranted in exercising over men all the coercion he is able[.]
Herbert Spencer, The Man Versus the State


Moral Imperatives of Modern Culture

These emerge out of long-standing moral notions of freedom, benevolence, and the affirmation of ordinary life... I have been sketching a schematic map... [of] the moral sources [of these notions]... the original theistic grounding for these standards... a naturalism of disengaged reason, which in our day takes scientistic forms, and a third family of views which finds its sources in Romantic expressivism, or in one of the modernist successor visions.
Charles Taylor, Sources of the Self


US Life in 1842

Families helped each other putting up homes and barns. Together, they built churches, schools, and common civic buildings. They collaborated to build roads and bridges. They took pride in being free persons, independent, and self-reliant; but the texture of their lives was cooperative and fraternal.
Michael Novak, The Spirit of Democratic Capitalism


Society and State

For [the left] there is only the state and the individual, nothing in between. No family to rely on, no friend to depend on, no community to call on. No neighbourhood to grow in, no faith to share in, no charities to work in. No-one but the Minister, nowhere but Whitehall, no such thing as society - just them, and their laws, and their rules, and their arrogance.
David Cameron, Conference Speech 2008


Faith and Politics

As far as the Catholic Church is concerned, the principal focus of her interventions in the public arena is the protection and promotion of the dignity of the person, and she is thereby consciously drawing particular attention to principles which are not negotiable... [1.] protection of life in all its stages, from the first moment of conception until natural death; [2.] recognition and promotion of the natural structure of the family... [3.] the protection of the right of parents to educate their children.
Pope Benedict XVI, Speech to European Peoples Party, 2006


Never Trust Experts

No lesson seems to be so deeply inculcated by the experience of life as that you should never trust experts. If you believe doctors, nothing is wholesome: if you believe the theologians, nothing is innocent: if you believe the soldiers, nothing is safe. They all require their strong wine diluted by a very large admixture of insipid common sense.
Lord Salisbury, “Letter to Lord Lytton”


Conservatism's Holy Grail

What distinguishes true Conservatism from the rest, and from the Blair project, is the belief in more personal freedom and more market freedom, along with less state intervention... The true Third Way is the Holy Grail of Tory politics today - compassion and community without compulsion.
Minette Marrin, The Daily Telegraph


Class War

In England there were always two sharply opposed middle classes, the academic middle class and the commercial middle class. In the nineteenth century, the academic middle class won the battle for power and status... Then came the triumph of Margaret Thatcher... The academics lost their power and prestige and... have been gloomy ever since.
Freeman Dyson, “The Scientist as Rebel”


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©2007 Christopher Chantrill