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Culture, Science & Faith

Big Brother's Keeper: How Obama Exploits Black Poverty

He blames a "sense of unfairness and powerlessness" for riots.

Jim Harrington · May 6, 2015

In the wake of the Baltimore riots, Barack Obama argued that the violence there and in Ferguson was caused by a “sense of unfairness and powerlessness.” Of course, that’s a “sense” he’s harped on and nurtured for his entire adult life. Amazing how an entire segment of the population can feel aggrieved and victimized — and then lash out violently — when they’re told repeatedly how unjustly they’re treated. Indeed, Obama has only exacerbated racial discord.

Last year Obama launched “My Brother’s Keeper,” a program CBS News says is “modeled after local initiatives partnering governments, local businesses and foundations that connect young men with mentoring networks and help them cultivate skills to get ahead.” Young white men, however, need not apply.

On Monday, Obama introduced the My Brother’s Keeper Alliance, a nonprofit foundation to grow his initiative. “By almost every measure,” he said, “the life chances of the average young man of color is worse than his peers. Those opportunity gaps begin early … becoming harder and harder to bridge, making too many young men and women feel like no matter how hard they try, they may never achieve their dreams. And that sense of unfairness and of powerlessness … helped fuel some of the protests we’ve seen.”

Isn’t it odd that this plight has seemingly worsened under the first black president in the seventh year of his presidency?

In his plan are six benchmarks on the road to success. CBS News ticks them off: “entering school ready to learn, reading at grade level by third grade, graduating from high school ready for college and a career, finishing post-secondary education or job training, successfully entering the workforce, and reducing violence and providing a second chance.”

But cultural rot is going to be hard to fight. It’s horrific that for decades black children have been told that doing well in school is “acting white.” Following that dictum, reading at grade level becomes uncool. As for graduating, virtually all school districts graduate many kids who aren’t close to 12th grade level. These kids don’t have skills employers need, and they don’t succeed in college. Yet Obama teaches them to blame racism or an unjust system for their failures.

Conservative black commentators such as Larry Elder, Walter Williams and Star Parker have for years promoted a much simpler and more effective solution: Finish high school, get a job and marry before having children. Do these things, and you’ll have a good shot at success. But these courageous blacks are dismissed as “Uncle Toms” and “Oreos.”

Obama’s stated objectives of caring for disadvantaged blacks are seemingly noble, but they’re hardly new. The federal government has been fighting the War on Poverty for half a century with zero success. In fact, one might argue government involvement has only made the problem worse.

The Heritage Foundation reports that, with $22 trillion tax dollars already “invested” to rescue people from poverty, “a significant portion of the population is now less capable of self-sufficiency than … when the War on Poverty began.”

There seems to be virtually no substantive difference between what Obama’s cooking up and LBJ’s “Great Society,” but surely this latest will cost much more than promised and — like LBJ’s — last forever. Poverty is very useful to the Left, and we still have lots of it. The once-vibrant American middle class is struggling financially too. CNN Money reports that one-quarter of middle class families are living paycheck to paycheck, and the Left would love to expand the dole.

“We’re in this together,” Obama says. Ah, but we’re not. Obama is playing to the mob, and the mob isn’t white, Hispanic or Asian. But we do agree the problems are cultural. The black family has all but disappeared, Latinos are following close behind and whites are going the same direction. Most blacks are stuck in an ideology they’re too poorly educated to understand, so they support the people they’ve always voted for, the ones who “support” them. Yet while violent crime is down nationally, in many majority-black urban areas the neighborhoods resemble a battlefield.

Still, Obama complains about high incarceration rates of people of color while ignoring the fact that black males commit a hugely disproportionate percentage of all crime, and black-on-white crimes outnumber white-on-black ones by a factor of 10-1. Of course, the Leftmedia’s not interested in these inconvenient facts.

Interestingly, Obama’s “My Brother’s Keeper” largely ignores two other groups who are victims of male people of color — women and children. He made only passing reference to women of color in his comments, yet males repeatedly victimize them, impregnating them only to disappear unencumbered by responsibility. In urban centers, illegitimate births now sit at 80%, a social crisis the Left won’t acknowledge other than through abortion. Worse, it’s fashionable to have several “baby mommas” and “baby daddies.” We hardly need to explain the life-long crushing effects on children growing up with a single mother living in a gang-infested ghetto full of baby daddies and drugs.

Sometimes it seems Obama sees things with childlike eyes. “If I say it will happen, it will,” he seems to say. But, in fact, he’s not really interested in solving anything — even for “his” people. He’s well schooled in the philosophy that a good crisis shouldn’t be wasted, and this rioting business presents many opportunities for making mischief and growing government. So many opportunities, so little time.

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