Cal Thomas / Aug. 1, 2019

Smelling Rats in Baltimore

Calling someone “racist” has become the default position for liberal politicians and certain members of the media who wish to deflect attention from real problems.

Calling someone “racist” has become the default position for liberal politicians and certain members of the media who wish to deflect attention from real problems.

President Trump has (again) been called a racist for having the temerity to note that House Government Oversight Committee Chairman Elijah Cummings (D-MD) seems to spend more time criticizing him and the border patrol than he does fixing problems in his own home district, which includes about half of Baltimore city.

When the president noted that parts of Cummings’ district are infested with rats, the racist smears began. Why is the president a racist for pointing out what even African-American leaders in Baltimore have said about certain areas of the city?

The Washington Times resurrected a comment by former Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh, who is African American and was ousted from office over an investigation into corruption. Pugh commented on part of the city’s abandoned row houses and alleys strewn with trash: “Whoa, you can smell the rats. Whew, Jesus. Oh, my God, you can smell the dead animals.”

In 2015, presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders toured West Baltimore in the company of African-American leaders and residents. The Baltimore Sun reported on Sanders’ statement: “Anyone who took the walk that we took around this neighborhood would not think you’re in a wealthy nation. You would think that you were in a Third World country.” Those with him nodded approvingly.

Are Pugh and Sanders racists for stating the obvious?

Baltimore has averaged 300 murders per year for several years. In 2015, it set a record with 344 homicides, according to the Sun. The newspaper, which has been highly critical of Trump’s remarks about Cummings, reported last September on FBI statistics that showed “Baltimore had the worst homicide rate among the nation’s 50 largest cities last year and the second-highest violent crime rate overall.” Is it racist to point that out, or is it only racist when a white politician says it?

Instead of listening to politicians talk about Baltimore, elected officials and the media should be talking to people who have been trapped in these squalid areas. They might ask Democrats who have run the city (and other cities such as Los Angeles, San Francisco, Detroit and Flint, Michigan where homelessness, crime and filth abound) why they have done nothing to improve these neighborhoods. Many American cities with similar problems have been run by Democrats for decades. Why do voters keep returning them to office when their misery only deepens?

What would Democrats do if the poor and minority voters, who are their base, tried a different party and a different attitude? Democrats have promised much and delivered little to their base, at least since the 1930s when the federal government began to dispense welfare benefits, benefits that have fueled an addiction to entitlement programs and created an allegiance to the party most dedicated to keeping the checks coming in exchange for votes.

Democrats, like Rep. Cummings, have also opposed school choice. The ability to choose a better public, or private school for poor and minority children (with vouchers to pay for them) is an opportunity to improve their prospects and break out of the poverty cycle that for some families has been repeated for several generations.

Kimberly Klacik, who occasionally appears on Fox News, says she is a journalist and lives in Baltimore. She interviewed a local African-American woman named “Michelle,” who said: “What (President Trump) said was definitely true. (Cummings) hasn’t done anything for us. He’s worried more about (caring for illegal aliens at the border) than his own people. Trump is not racist … I’m glad he put (Cummings) on blast. The rats just didn’t come. These houses just didn’t get torn down, they’ve been like this.”

Given these facts, to whom should the “racist” label be more accurately applied?

© 2019 Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

Start a conversation using these share links:

Who We Are

The Patriot Post is a highly acclaimed weekday digest of news analysis, policy and opinion written from the heartland — as opposed to the MSM’s ubiquitous Beltway echo chambers — for grassroots leaders nationwide. More

What We Offer

On the Web

We provide solid conservative perspective on the most important issues, including analysis, opinion columns, headline summaries, memes, cartoons and much more.

Via Email

Choose our full-length Digest or our quick-reading Snapshot for a summary of important news. We also offer Cartoons & Memes on Monday and Alexander’s column on Wednesday.

Our Mission

The Patriot Post is steadfast in our mission to extend the endowment of Liberty to the next generation by advocating for individual rights and responsibilities, supporting the restoration of constitutional limits on government and the judiciary, and promoting free enterprise, national defense and traditional American values. We are a rock-solid conservative touchstone for the expanding ranks of grassroots Americans Patriots from all walks of life. Our mission and operation budgets are not financed by any political or special interest groups, and to protect our editorial integrity, we accept no advertising. We are sustained solely by you. Please support The Patriot Fund today!

★ PUBLIUS ★

“Our cause is noble; it is the cause of mankind!” —George Washington

The Patriot Post is protected speech, as enumerated in the First Amendment and enforced by the Second Amendment of the Constitution of the United States of America, in accordance with the endowed and unalienable Rights of All Mankind.

Copyright © 2021 The Patriot Post. All Rights Reserved.

The Patriot Post does not support Internet Explorer. We recommend installing the latest version of Microsoft Edge, Mozilla Firefox, or Google Chrome.