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Before the 1960s, American blacks suffered from white people who actively tried to oppress them. After the ’60s, blacks suffered from white people who actively tried to help them. It was the latter who have, by far, hurt blacks the most.
Progressive policies such as:
- Minimum wage laws, which hurt the least employable workers (i.e., the least educated, least experienced, and most discriminated against)
- Occupational licensing, which reduces jobs and makes relocating to another state more difficult
- Rent control, which reduces low-income housing
- Welfare restrictions that favor single-parent families
- High marginal tax rates on earnings by welfare recipients
- Zoning restrictions, which reduce low-income housing
…hurt black Americans far more than did the infamous Jim Crow laws.
Insane? Look at the numbers:
- Between 1940 and 1960 – when Jim Crow was in full force – the black poverty rate dropped from 87% to 47%.
- Between 1972 and 2011 – when the Civil Rights Acts, the Great Society programs, and Affirmative Action firmly in place – the rate dropped from 32% to 28%.
- In 1948, the unemployment rate for blacks aged 16-17 years was 9.4% and for blacks aged 18-19 it was 10.5 percent. The rates for whites of the same ages were 10.2% and 9.4%.
- Today, the unemployment rate for young blacks is 35% – three times higher than it was in 1948.
- In 1960, 22% of black children were being raised without a father.
- In 1995, 85% of black children were being raised without a father.
African Americans were harmed far less by the systemic racism of the past than they are by today’s systemic paternalism.
In the words of Frederick Douglass:
Everybody has asked the question… ‘What shall we do with the Negro?’ I have had but one answer from the beginning. Do nothing with us! Your doing with us has already played the mischief with us. Do nothing with us!