David French Is for Reparations?

 

Reading this dispatch from the Dispatch, it seems like David French is four square in the camp of structural racism.

In his article he attacks those on the right that believe in equal justice under the law thusly:

…that racism exists only when there is individual malign intent, that remedies for racism should be limited to imposing consequences on individual racists, and that there is no intergenerational obligation to remedy historic injustice (“I’m not responsible for my ancestors’ sins”).

Under this mode of thinking, the concept of “equality under the law”—as mandated by the Constitution and the Civil Rights Act—is both necessary and largely sufficient to address the causes and consequences of centuries of slavery followed by generations of Jim Crow.

Well, I have to say, yes. That is what we have to work with. Anything else is making someone today pony up for some sin they did not commit. I have an ancestor who served in the Confederate Army. So what? French cites a biblical passage, which, I will ignore, because we have more than believers in the Old Testament here about, and move on. French decides to find structural racism in housing.

Residential segregation, through redlining and other means—especially when combined with profound employment discrimination and educational disparities—resulted in the creation of large communities of dramatically disadvantaged Americans. Because of centuries of systematic, de jure (by law) oppression, they possessed fewer resources and less education than those who didn’t suffer equivalent discrimination.

While the passing of the Civil Rights Act meant that black Americans had the right to live elsewhere, they often lacked the resources to purchase homes or rent apartments in wealthier neighborhoods with better schools. Indeed, to this day, the median net worth of a black family ($17,150) is roughly one-tenth the median net worth of a white family ($171,000). That means less money for down payments, less money for security deposits, and overall fewer resources that enable social mobility.

One of the solutions to this problem is permitting more multi-family housing in wealthier communities. But that’s exactly when NIMBYism rears its head. Even if every member of a local zoning and planning commission isn’t racist, there are multiple non-racist reasons for them to resist greater population density. There’s traffic congestion. There’s school overcrowding. There’s the potential consequence to property values. There are environmental objections. There are a host of related infrastructure concerns.

Well. I guess all those poor black people who moved north to escape Jim Crow and the poverty of the south did not happen? French ignores that what was called “White Flight” was in fact, “Middle Class Flight.” What is weird here is that he gives all the totally normal, race-neutral reasons that people don’t want where they live changed. Well, that is great. He just goes on to call for people to change their rules anyway. Y’all who know me, know I am pro-community rights, because I believe the people have the right to fashion communities they want to live in. This is done through government. David French, conservative, disagrees:

With regards to zoning, I’m more likely to suggest that property owners should be granted more economic freedom and that limits on multi-family housing are perpetuated by limiting people’s freedom to buy and develop land. The balance between planning and property rights should tilt more towards liberty. NIMBYism exists in part because government authorities sometimes control my backyard more than I do.

David French does not understand how “Not in My Backyard” works. It exists because the people who are there use government to set controls into place. It is clear that Mr. French is unhappy that local people, trying to build the best community they can, with nary a bit of racism in their own hearts, are unwilling to take a hit of some sort, and have the sorts of multifamily housing proven to decrease standard of living. It is clear that he wants them to take one for the team by what he calls a “tilt more towards liberty” but what he really means is a “tilt more towards the sort of construction I think should happen because bad things happened to minorities in the past.” I am pleased he does not want central control of redistribution of wealth, but forcing a community to change its zoning to increase housing density is not an act of liberty for the people already living there, it is a violation of their rights as sure as if you taxed them to transfer money to someone else.

Speaking of transfers, French complains:

Indeed, to this day, the median net worth of a black family ($17,150) is roughly one-tenth the median net worth of a white family ($171,000). That means less money for down payments, less money for security deposits, and overall fewer resources that enable social mobility.

Well, since the start of the Great Society, we have spent billions and billions in tax dollars, taken from people doing well, and given it, mostly no serious strings attached, to the poor. The so-called War on Poverty has not budged the line at all. So, I don’t see how more transfers of wealth, in any format, is going to make a difference.

What is really funny to me, is that before the end of Jim Crow, black families were more intact. It was not slavery that ended black families. It was not decades of oppression that ended black families. No, it was the coming of massive government intervention, and a society that embraced sex outside of marriage to an astonishing degree. Indeed, all families used to be more intact. I wonder if Mr. French put the same energy and faith into advocating for the end of no-fault divorce as he does for this sort of nonsense what that would be like. Not popular with anyone, I imagine. I mean, we are in an age, where David French’s buddy at the Dispatch watched and spoke highly of Game of Thrones which was soft medium-core porn (and Danny, by the way folks, was underage in the book) and cheered it on in the GLOP podcast. Not sure I have read French take his buddy to task for that.

What is really funny here, is that French opens his whole article complaining that another religious organization does not want a pastor to use Critical Race Theory as a foundation. He then attacks being against CRT as being unconservative because it is not seeing the world as it is, namely, that slavery and Jim Crow did some bad things.

Even worse, David French does not prove that in 2021 there is structural racism against blacks. The title of his article is not even backed up. What he talks about are nonracist reasons that some people find themselves boxed out of some situations. The real reason there are “large communities of dramatically disadvantaged Americans” is because dysfunctional people create dysfunctional communities. No one who is functional wants to live in those communities regardless of their race. And any time too many dysfunctional people move into a functional community, it fails. The functional people move out, and the area is colonized by more dysfunctional people. Burning down your local Walmart is not the act of “disadvantaged Americans” because if it were, large parts of the Appalachian mountains would have been burned to the ground. Mr. French does not even address that level of poverty.

David French is not an ally in the fight to save America. He has sided with the forces who want CRT and he is calling for reparations. Not calling them with that name, nor is he calling for centralized control. But he is clearly calling for people to disadvantage themselves because there has been racism in the past, and own up to the idea that being nonracist, but wanting the best for you and yours is actually systematically racist.

Heaven help us from “conservatives” like David French.

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  1. RufusRJones Member
    RufusRJones
    @RufusRJones

    Excellent post.

    This stuff gets really complicated, but the left wants regional and federal zoning control so they can homogenize the suburbs with the cities for multiple ends.  It’s  horrible. Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing.

    • #1
  2. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens
    @BryanGStephens

    RufusRJones (View Comment):

    Excellent post.

    This stuff gets really complicated, but the left wants regional and federal zoning control so they can homogenize the suburbs with the cities for multiple ends. It’s a horrible. Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing.

    Yes it is, and French is all for it, just as long as it does not come form the Feds or something?

    He does not seem particularly coherent in his argument. 

    • #2
  3. RufusRJones Member
    RufusRJones
    @RufusRJones

    Minnesota is one of the worst places for Black people. We are at the bottom on all kinds of metrics, particularly the racial education gap. We are also number 50 in the racial disparities for what kind of real estate people live in. Statistically, blacks are better off living in Mississippi instead of Minnesota. The progressives have so much power in the state that it’s clearly their fault. What’s interesting is, they are either forcing mixed housing in Minneapolis or I suppose you could call it making a more libertarian zoning system in Minneapolis. If that’s actually progress, and maybe it is, everything else is getting worse for the urban community or it’s staying the same.

    • #3
  4. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist
    @WesternChauvinist

    Michael Anton harshes French and basically calls his position “evil.” And I’m okay with that.

    https://americanmind.org/salvo/david-french-and-the-conservative-case-for-hereditary-bloodguilt/

    • #4
  5. Hoyacon Member
    Hoyacon
    @Hoyacon

    Western Chauvinist (View Comment):

    Michael Anton harshes French and basically calls his position “evil.” And I’m okay with that.

    https://americanmind.org/salvo/david-french-and-the-conservative-case-for-hereditary-bloodguilt/

    Beat me.  Game, set, match.

    The only problematic thing is that French has gotten himself into a position where people feel that he needs to be rebutted.

    • #5
  6. kedavis Member
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    My primary thought on David French:

     

    • #6
  7. Stina Member
    Stina
    @CM

    Expect French to go all in on Woke Evangelicalism and Progressive theology, eventually giving up his faith altogether.

    • #7
  8. Clifford A. Brown Contributor
    Clifford A. Brown
    @CliffordBrown

    Western Chauvinist (View Comment):

    Michael Anton harshes French and basically calls his position “evil.” And I’m okay with that.

    https://americanmind.org/salvo/david-french-and-the-conservative-case-for-hereditary-bloodguilt/

    From Anton’s excellent piece:

    David French not only shares your enemies’ presuppositions and world view, he is actively working with them to harm you. He wants you to become a second-class citizen in your own country, to be defined in law as guilty because of your race, and to force you to fork over your hard-earned wealth to others to salve his own irrationally guilty conscience.

    Worse (much worse), to use a Biblical passage to support nation-destroying policies that elevate one race and target another—a passage that, to boot, culminates in the execution of innocent men—is, not to put too fine a point on it, evil. I no longer think much of Jonah Goldberg. I used to be friendly with Steve Hayes and am, as far as I know, still on good terms with him (though I fear this piece will end that). Yet whatever my disagreements with them, I never thought they would stoop to publishing something this sinister and corrosive.

    But, again, clarity is useful. Now there can be no confusion about what the “conservatives” believe, what they think of you, what they think you deserve, and what they want to do to you.

    • #8
  9. Dotorimuk Coolidge
    Dotorimuk
    @Dotorimuk

    Scott Adams figures that the way we should calculate reparations should be to compare the income and wealth of the descendants of slaves to their “would have been” countrymen who are still in Africa. Most likely, that number will be negative.

    • #9
  10. kedavis Member
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    Stina (View Comment):

    Expect French to go all in on Woke Evangelicalism and Progressive theology, eventually giving up his faith altogether.

    He wouldn’t have to “give it up,” he’ll just claim – against all clear evidence – that there are no contradictions.  Lots of people already do that now, who will notice one more?

    • #10
  11. DaveSchmidt Coolidge
    DaveSchmidt
    @DaveSchmidt

    I wonder in what kind of neighborhood French and his family live. Where do/did his kids go to school? How much of his net worth is he willing to share with the poorest in his town?

    • #11
  12. kedavis Member
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    DaveSchmidt (View Comment):

    I wonder in what kind of neighborhood French and his family live. Where do/did his kids go to school? How much of his net worth is he willing to share with the poorest in his town?

    • #12
  13. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens
    @BryanGStephens

    Western Chauvinist (View Comment):

    Michael Anton harshes French and basically calls his position “evil.” And I’m okay with that.

    https://americanmind.org/salvo/david-french-and-the-conservative-case-for-hereditary-bloodguilt/

    Well, phoo. I guess I am totally outclassed here. 

    • #13
  14. kedavis Member
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    “The Conservative Case For [something awful]” is developing into quite a meme.

    • #14
  15. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens
    @BryanGStephens

    kedavis (View Comment):

    DaveSchmidt (View Comment):

    I wonder in what kind of neighborhood French and his family live. Where do/did his kids go to school? How much of his net worth is he willing to share with the poorest in his town?

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Perfect. I miss him.

    • #15
  16. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist
    @WesternChauvinist

    Bryan G. Stephens (View Comment):

    Western Chauvinist (View Comment):

    Michael Anton harshes French and basically calls his position “evil.” And I’m okay with that.

    https://americanmind.org/salvo/david-french-and-the-conservative-case-for-hereditary-bloodguilt/

    Well, phoo. I guess I am totally outclassed here.

    Don’t be too hard on yourself, Bryan. Hardly anyone can outclass Michael Anton. 

    • #16
  17. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens
    @BryanGStephens

    Western Chauvinist (View Comment):

    Bryan G. Stephens (View Comment):

    Western Chauvinist (View Comment):

    Michael Anton harshes French and basically calls his position “evil.” And I’m okay with that.

    https://americanmind.org/salvo/david-french-and-the-conservative-case-for-hereditary-bloodguilt/

    Well, phoo. I guess I am totally outclassed here.

    Don’t be too hard on yourself, Bryan. Hardly anyone can outclass Michael Anton.

    Fair enough. Just thought maybe I had a “scoop”!

    Wonder where the Dispatch fans are?

    • #17
  18. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist
    @WesternChauvinist

    Bryan G. Stephens (View Comment):

    Western Chauvinist (View Comment):

    Bryan G. Stephens (View Comment):

    Western Chauvinist (View Comment):

    Michael Anton harshes French and basically calls his position “evil.” And I’m okay with that.

    https://americanmind.org/salvo/david-french-and-the-conservative-case-for-hereditary-bloodguilt/

    Well, phoo. I guess I am totally outclassed here.

    Don’t be too hard on yourself, Bryan. Hardly anyone can outclass Michael Anton.

    Fair enough. Just thought maybe I had a “scoop”!

    Wonder where the Dispatch fans are?

    Is there more than one?

    • #18
  19. E. Kent Golding Member
    E. Kent Golding
    @EKentGolding

    French is lost.    We need to pray for him.   Pray that he reconnects to God & Truth.  We do not need to like him or agree with him to pray for him.

    • #19
  20. GLDIII Purveyor of Splendid Malpropisms Reagan
    GLDIII Purveyor of Splendid Malpropisms
    @GLDIII

    Bryan your first mistake was to be reading David French. I have given up on anything he posits these day. I am close to doing the same with Jonah.

    Its a pity about Jonah, I really enjoy his books, even to the point that I got him to sign them for me…

    • #20
  21. Weeping Member
    Weeping
    @Weeping

    Bryan G. Stephens:

    Speaking of transfers, French complains:

    Indeed, to this day, the median net worth of a black family ($17,150) is roughly one-tenth the median net worth of a white family ($171,000). That means less money for down payments, less money for security deposits, and overall fewer resources that enable social mobility.

    Median net worth does not mean what French appears to think it means. Just because the median net worth of whites is $171,00 does not mean that the majority of whites have a net worth that’s anything close to that. Mr. Weeping and I have never at anytime in our lives been worth that much – neither have our parents or siblings or other extended family members. If I’m wrong about that and some have, they’ve been few and far between. In other words, that statistic is really pretty useless. That’s one thing I remember from the book How to Lie with Statistics – a book I think everyone should read.

     

    • #21
  22. kedavis Member
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    Weeping (View Comment):

    Bryan G. Stephens:

    Speaking of transfers, French complains:

    Indeed, to this day, the median net worth of a black family ($17,150) is roughly one-tenth the median net worth of a white family ($171,000). That means less money for down payments, less money for security deposits, and overall fewer resources that enable social mobility.

    Median net worth does not mean what French appears to think it means. Just because the median net worth of whites is $171,00 does not mean that the majority of whites have a net worth that’s anything close to that. Mr. Weeping and I have never at anytime in our lives been worth that much – neither have our parents or siblings or other extended family members. If I’m wrong about that and some have, they’ve been few and far between. In other words, that statistic is really pretty useless. That’s one thing I remember from the book How to Lie with Statistics – a book I think everyone should read.

    That figure routinely includes value of a primary home, and a lot of people have more house than that, even if it’s not fully paid-off yet. One reason that black families don’t have that asset is in many cases they choose to rent even if owning is available to them.  A lot of whites do the same, of course, but with a much larger share of the total population it can have less effect on the median.

    • #22
  23. CarolJoy, Not So Easy To Kill Coolidge
    CarolJoy, Not So Easy To Kill
    @CarolJoy

    DaveSchmidt (View Comment):

    I wonder in what kind of neighborhood French and his family live. Where do/did his kids go to school? How much of his net worth is he willing to share with the poorest in his town?

    I know – that is the elephant in the room.

    So people who want to offer up reparations are free to do that! Even under “racist” Trump, any one in the USA who wanted to part with a significant part of their financial wealth was allowed to spread their wealth  and of course, under Biden, an individual  is still free to do that.

    Funny thing was, most of these kneeling before an anonymous African American at a Unity Church service last summer could have also added tht black person’s name to their house deed, and put that person in their will.

    But this is not what the Mr French-types expect to have happen. Instead they expect the government to tax white people – which will end up, due to mortgage deductions, business deductions etc, meaning that the poorest members of society who make too much for EIC will end up paying  for these reparations.

    So thanks Mr French. The woman working at Subway Sandwiches, who puts in overtime to be able to get by, and the student who works nights and weekends and will spend 5 years rather than 4 to get through college, they will pay more. Meanwhile, if your taxes go up on account of this, Mr French, your CPA will figure out a way to find another deduction!

    Why? Is having white skin really to now be penalized? Or are any and all  descendants of historic injustices to be offered reparations – and if so, I want the nation of Scotland’s citizens to send me the monies for my reparations, of the night when Scottish Highland clearances meant the family home was burned, female relatives raped, men killed outright and the survivors put on boats to Nova Scotia, and in my forebears case, from there  to Chicago. (Many Scots didn’t survive the journey, as they were given only a small bag of oats as sustenance. And many had been  injured during the fracas while their homes were burned.)

    • #23
  24. Bryan G. Stephens Thatcher
    Bryan G. Stephens
    @BryanGStephens

    GLDIII Purveyor of Splendid Ma… (View Comment):

    Bryan you first mistake was to be reading David French. I have given up on anything he posits these day. I am close to doing the same with Jonah.

    Its a pity about Jonah, I really enjoy is books, even to the point that I got him to sign them for me…

    I know.  It was the headline that caught my eye and I had to think it was going to be one of those paradoxical things. Nope he meant it.

    • #24
  25. kedavis Member
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    Bryan G. Stephens (View Comment):

    GLDIII Purveyor of Splendid Ma… (View Comment):

    Bryan you first mistake was to be reading David French. I have given up on anything he posits these day. I am close to doing the same with Jonah.

    Its a pity about Jonah, I really enjoy is books, even to the point that I got him to sign them for me…

    I know. It was the headline that caught my eye and I had to think it was going to be one of those paradoxical things. Nope he meant it.

    When The Babylon Bee has “The Conservative Case For [something awful]” they’re being joking/paradoxical.

    When David French (among a few others) has “The Conservative Case For [something awful]” it’s also ridiculous, but he’s being serious.

    • #25
  26. RushBabe49 Thatcher
    RushBabe49
    @RushBabe49

    CarolJoy, Not So Easy To Kill (View Comment):

    DaveSchmidt (View Comment):

    I wonder in what kind of neighborhood French and his family live. Where do/did his kids go to school? How much of his net worth is he willing to share with the poorest in his town?

    I know – that is the elephant in the room.

    So people who want to offer up reparations are free to do that! Even under racist Trump, any one in the USA who wanted to part with a significant part of their financial wealth was allowed to spread their wealth and of course, under Biden, an individual is still free to do that.

    Funny thing was, most of these kneeling before an anonymous African American at a unity Church service last summer could have also added tht black person’s name to their house deed, and put that person in their will.

    But this is not what the Mr French-types expect to have happen. Instead they expect the government to tax white people – which will end ujp, due to mortgage deductions, business deductions etc, mean that the poorest members of society who make too much for EIC will end up paying for these reparations.

    So thanks Mr French. The woman working at Subway Sandwiches, who puts in overtime to be able to get by, and the student who works nights and weekends and will spend 5 years rather than 4 to get through college, they will pay more. Meanwhile, if your taxes go up on account of this, Mr French, your CPA will figure out a way to find another deduction!

    Why? Is having white skin really to now be penalized? Or are any and all historic injustices to be offer reparations – and if so, I want the nation of Scotland’s citizens to send me the monies for my reparations, of the night when Scottish Highland clearances meant the family home was burned, female relatives raped, men killed outright and the survivors put on boats to Nova Scotia, and from there to Chicago. (Many Scots didn’t survive the journey, as they were given only a small bag of oats as sustenance. And many had been injured during the fracas while their homes were burned.)

     

    The English really screwed Scotland and Ireland, didn’t they?  I wonder if Irish and Scottish citizens today are demanding reparations?

    • #26
  27. Eustace C. Scrubb Member
    Eustace C. Scrubb
    @EustaceCScrubb

    GLDIII Purveyor of Splendid Ma… (View Comment):

    Bryan you first mistake was to be reading David French. I have given up on anything he posits these day. I am close to doing the same with Jonah.

    Its a pity about Jonah, I really enjoy is books, even to the point that I got him to sign them for me…

    From the opening of Jonah’s recent newsletter: “Dear Reader (Including those of you letting David French live rent-free in your intra-cranial studio space)”

    • #27
  28. kedavis Member
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    Eustace C. Scrubb (View Comment):

    GLDIII Purveyor of Splendid Ma… (View Comment):

    Bryan you first mistake was to be reading David French. I have given up on anything he posits these day. I am close to doing the same with Jonah.

    Its a pity about Jonah, I really enjoy is books, even to the point that I got him to sign them for me…

    From the opening of Jonah’s recent newsletter: “Dear Reader (Including those of you letting David French live rent-free in your intra-cranial studio space)”

    I have never once even began to read any of Jonah’s newsletters.

    • #28
  29. Randy Webster Member
    Randy Webster
    @RandyWebster

    Bryan G. Stephens (View Comment):

    RufusRJones (View Comment):

    Excellent post.

    This stuff gets really complicated, but the left wants regional and federal zoning control so they can homogenize the suburbs with the cities for multiple ends. It’s a horrible. Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing.

    Yes it is, and French is all for it, just as long as it does not come form the Feds or something?

    He does not seem particularly coherent in his argument.

    French lives far enough out of Nashville that it won’t affect him.

    • #29
  30. Hoyacon Member
    Hoyacon
    @Hoyacon

    Eustace C. Scrubb (View Comment):

    GLDIII Purveyor of Splendid Ma… (View Comment):

    Bryan you first mistake was to be reading David French. I have given up on anything he posits these day. I am close to doing the same with Jonah.

    Its a pity about Jonah, I really enjoy is books, even to the point that I got him to sign them for me…

    From the opening of Jonah’s recent newsletter: “Dear Reader (Including those of you letting David French live rent-free in your intra-cranial studio space)”

    It’s a staple of the times to use the “rent- free “ bs whenever someone is being justifiably criticized. It’s kind of the last refuge of a scoundrel 2021.

    • #30