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Add to Katrina's toll race-tinged rhetoric (Rush, O'Reilly and Glen Beck dividing country)
St. Petersburg Times ^ | September 14, 2005 | ERIC DEGGANS

Posted on 09/14/2005 1:58:45 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife

This is where the blame game gets ugly.

"So every American kid should be required to watch videotape of the poor in New Orleans and see how they suffered (after Hurricane Katrina), because they couldn't get out of town," said Fox News Channel pundit Bill O'Reilly last week on his show, The O'Reilly Factor .

"And then, every teacher should tell the students, "If you refuse to learn, if you refuse to work hard, if you become addicted, if you live a gangsta-life, you will be poor and powerless just like many of those in New Orleans."'

This was how O'Reilly chose to deflect criticism of the federal government after the horrific delays in hurricane relief. Government is fallible, he argued. So why expect it to save you?

The larger implications of his words also are obvious. These often poor, often black hurricane victims brought all this misery and death on themselves, because they weren't motivated enough to succeed in America.

In the same way that live coverage of the aftermath exposed the fissure between haves and have-nots when disaster strikes, the subsequent reaction of some pundits has unearthed the race-tinged rhetoric they often use to justify their arguments.

Conservative radio personality Rush Limbaugh was more explicit, saying New Orleans (which has a black mayor and many black officials) had a "welfare state mentality" that kept some residents from earning enough to handle the disaster.

"The nonblack population was just as devastated, but apparently they were able to get out," Limbaugh, who is white, said on his show Sept. 1. "Race, in this circumstance, is a poisonous weapon, and it's why the liberals are now gravitating to it."

A synopsis on the Web site for evangelist Pat Robertson's 700 Club show outlined a recent appearance by conservative black minister Wellington Boone, who talked about "the culture of those people stranded in New Orleans" and how it led to their fate.

"The looting of property, the trashing of property, etc. speaks to the basic character of the people," read the recap of Boone's appearance on CBN.com. "These people who have gone through slavery, segregation and the Voting Rights Act are doing this to themselves. They look like a developing nation."

Imagine the headlines nationally if Robertson, who is white, had made that "developing nation" crack instead of a black minister.

Gangsta lifestyle. Welfare mentality. Developing nation. All code words often used as unflattering, veiled references to people of color.

"My encouragement to journalists is to not use labels," said Aly Colon, an instructor on ethics and diversity issues at the Poynter Institute for Media Studies, which owns the St. Petersburg Times . "As you see picture after picture of people who you understand to be poor and you see to be black, if you know nothing else about New Orleans, that becomes New Orleans. You have no sense of context."

Indeed, the images of looting and violence were horrific, as a ruthless contingent of lawbreakers stole unneeded items, shot at police officers and worse.

But such actions also helped some commentators push their own punitive political perspective, lumping innocent victims together with aggressive criminals in their own backward "blame game."

Colon noted race and class stereotypes evoked in such media coverage are particularly important, if only because they can soothe the sensibilities of those already hoping to see most hurricane victims as somehow deserving of their desperate fate.

Another radio personality, former Tampa talker Glenn Beck, made a similar point Friday in detailing how he's beginning to hate the hurricane victims in New Orleans, because they wouldn't line up in an orderly fashion to get $2,000 ATM cards.

"Those are the only ones we're seeing on television are the scumbags," said Beck, who now broadcasts from Philadelphia.

"It's just a small percentage of those who were left in New Orleans, or who decided to stay in New Orleans, and they're getting all the attention."

As America tackles public policy changes in the wake of Katrina, how will the stereotypes created by pundits such as Beck, O'Reilly and Limbaugh affect the debate? At a time when unity is so important, the words of those who profit by keeping us apart are the last we should heed.

--Eric Deggans can be reached at 727 893-8521 or deggans@sptimes.com


TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Culture/Society; Editorial; Government; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections; US: Louisiana
KEYWORDS: beck; boone; democraticparty; katrina; limbaugh; oreilly; politics; poor; racism; robertson; welfare
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Ah...

I believe it was the failed welfare state, so loved by LIBERALS, that was being assailed.

1 posted on 09/14/2005 1:58:46 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: All
These white commentators Mr. Deggans is pointing to aren't alone in their criticism of a system that has created poverty.

A cry in the black education wilderness (LINKS and quotes from articles)

2 posted on 09/14/2005 2:05:54 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Cincinatus' Wife
The larger implications of his words also are obvious. These often poor, often black hurricane victims brought all this misery and death on themselves, because they weren't motivated enough to succeed in America.

The "implication" was harsh and mostly true, but the real question that should be confronted is ...... why aren't they motivated.

The Great Society............ The Age of Entitlement....... The Dependency Mentality

3 posted on 09/14/2005 2:07:51 AM PDT by beyond the sea ("I was just the spark the universe chose ....." --- Cindy Sheehan (barf alert))
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To: Cincinatus' Wife
I believe it was the failed welfare state

I concur.

It wasn't black or white, it was liberal lack of leadership, voted in by liberals. No doodads.

4 posted on 09/14/2005 2:09:46 AM PDT by benjaminjjones
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To: Cincinatus' Wife
believe it was the failed welfare state, so loved by LIBERALS, that was being assailed.

Of course but since the race baiters cannot argue facts, they go into hysteric name calling mode rather then debate the issue.

5 posted on 09/14/2005 2:11:36 AM PDT by MNJohnnie (Professional Journalism the Buggy Whip makers of the 21st century)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife
I believe it was the failed welfare state, so loved by LIBERALS

Whoopsie! Those are "code words" for "persons of color."

So are the words:

  1. poor
  2. disadvantaged
  3. welfare mom
  4. single mom
  5. ho
  6. drug user
  7. drug buyer
  8. drug seller
  9. drug
  10. intersection
  11. uvula
  12. wankel rotory engine
  13. going a bit red in helsinki

6 posted on 09/14/2005 2:15:47 AM PDT by Shazbot29 (Trolling member of the DU Activist Corps!)
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To: Shazbot29

14. working poor.


7 posted on 09/14/2005 2:20:32 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: MNJohnnie
......It is possible to be a socialist, and radical in one's agendas, and yet moderate in the means one regards as practical to achieve them. To change the world, it is first necessary to acquire cultural and political power. And these transitional goals may often be accomplished by indirection and deception even more effectively than by frontal assault. Political stratagems that appear moderate and compromised to radical factions of the left may present an even greater threat from the perspective of the other side. In 1917, Lenin's political slogan wasn't "Socialist Dictatorship! Firing Squads and Gulags!" It was "Bread, Land and Peace." ....*** Source
8 posted on 09/14/2005 2:22:13 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: beyond the sea
The "implication" was harsh and mostly true, but the real question that should be confronted is ...... why aren't they motivated.

****.........It would be difficult to recall, for example, the number of times I have been introduced on conservative platforms as "a former civil rights worker and peace activist in the 1960s." I have been described this way despite having written a detailed autobiography that exposes these self-glorifying images of the left as so many political lies.

Like many New Left leaders whom the young Mrs. Clinton once followed (and who are her comrades today), I regarded myself in the 1960s as a socialist and a revolutionary. No matter what slogans we chanted, or ideals we proclaimed our agendas always extended beyond (and well beyond) the immediate issues of "civil rights" and "peace." ....*** Source

9 posted on 09/14/2005 2:24:58 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

How did I miss that?

Well, it is very early and I am not quite awake ;)


10 posted on 09/14/2005 2:25:05 AM PDT by Shazbot29 (Trolling member of the DU Activist Corps!)
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To: benjaminjjones
.....Conservatives who think progressives are misinformed idealists will forever be blind-sided by the malice of the left-by the cynicism of those who pride themselves on principle, by the viciousness of those who champion sensitivity, by the intolerance of those who call themselves liberal, and by the ruthless disregard for the well-being of the downtrodden by those who preen themselves as social saints. ........ ....***Source
11 posted on 09/14/2005 2:26:15 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Shazbot29

You did good!!


12 posted on 09/14/2005 2:26:40 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Cincinatus' Wife
"At a time when unity is so important, the words of those who profit by keeping us apart are the last we should heed."

Ah,the utter self-righteous blindness of the left.

It never ceases to amaze.

13 posted on 09/14/2005 2:31:19 AM PDT by TheClintons-STILLAnti-American
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To: TheClintons-STILLAnti-American

You nailed it.


14 posted on 09/14/2005 2:33:58 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Cincinatus' Wife
14. working poor.

Then there is that noble group of selfless individuals who dedicate every waking hour to helping them, the omnipresent "advocates for the poor."

15 posted on 09/14/2005 2:48:00 AM PDT by speedy
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To: speedy

....vs those who spend every waking hour trying to keep the poor suppressed.

Look! They're one and the same!!

We're talking about the Democratic Party, whose unofficial motto is - "Keep them dumb, dependent, depressed and Democrat."


16 posted on 09/14/2005 2:51:48 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

Yup. That's how the Rats stay in business. Pathetic, isn't it? The good thing is that more and more people see through it.


17 posted on 09/14/2005 3:09:57 AM PDT by speedy
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To: speedy
That's why LIBERALS are so intent on smearing conservatives with the racist brush.

Blacks have been damaged by LIBERAL feel-good programs and they're beginning to find that out.

It will hurt Democrats at the polls.
18 posted on 09/14/2005 3:18:21 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

Gotta love David Horowitz, but I wish he'd learn to stop sputtering and halting on radio and tv when he's trying to make a good point.


19 posted on 09/14/2005 3:19:59 AM PDT by beyond the sea ("I was just the spark the universe chose ....." --- Cindy Sheehan (barf alert))
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To: beyond the sea
I know. Horowitz doesn't do "live" well but he knows his LIBERALS.
20 posted on 09/14/2005 3:21:52 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

CW, the Rats remind me of the Soviets in the waning years of their power. It's like they have to keep repeating the same tired lies over and over even though fewer and fewer people believe it.


21 posted on 09/14/2005 3:22:40 AM PDT by speedy
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To: speedy

They've lost control of the media.

Now they have to try and discredit new voices.

But the truth is difficult to put back in the bottle.


22 posted on 09/14/2005 3:28:24 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

Is this guy being critical of the truth? I couldn't disagree with one comment or observation he lists in the article by Robertson, Limbaugh, or O'R.

The truth is a hard thing to fight. He's got his work cut out for him.


23 posted on 09/14/2005 3:28:50 AM PDT by TruthFactor
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

The young black kid who hotwired a bus and drove evacuees out of LA should be promoted to Mayor. He seemed to be one of the few residents who showed any initiative.

Naturally, the local government wants to prosecute him. Go figure.


24 posted on 09/14/2005 3:29:41 AM PDT by Fenris6 (3 Purple Hearts in 4 months w/o missing a day of work? He's either John Rambo or a Fraud)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

25 posted on 09/14/2005 3:31:56 AM PDT by mewzilla (Property must be secured or liberty cannot exist. John Adams)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

David is one of my favorite people. He's humble and approachable, and has learned his lessons well! He can come over for dinner any time.


26 posted on 09/14/2005 3:33:53 AM PDT by beyond the sea ("I was just the spark the universe chose ....." --- Cindy Sheehan (barf alert))
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To: TruthFactor

Exactly.

He can't, or won't see the real enemies in this drama.

He shills for the Democratic Party, instead of being interested in improving lives.


27 posted on 09/14/2005 3:35:16 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: mewzilla
Jeff Jacoby: Katrina's colorblind relief***.............A syndicated cartoon by Mike Luckovich of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution showed a crowded bus upended in the floodwaters, Uncle Sam at the wheel and a US flag emblazoned on its side. While black passengers drown in the vehicle's submerged rear, the whites up front stay dry and safe. That this is no accident is made clear by Luckovich's Jim Crow-evoking title: ''Back of the bus."

This America-as-lethally-racist theme is as factually dishonest as it is morally grotesque. No one denies that most of those stranded in New Orleans were black, but that is because two-thirds of the city's residents -- 326,000 out of a population of 485,000 -- were black. By the same token, most of those who got out before the disaster struck were also black.

Katrina devastated more than black-majority Orleans Parish. Four other Louisiana parishes and three coastal Mississippi counties, all with substantial white majorities, suffered heavily too. Government relief reached them no faster than it did New Orleans. If this were truly a racist country, it would have.

But those with an interest in perpetuating the idea that the chief cause of black misfortune is an American culture that ''doesn't care about black people" decry racism whether it exists or not. ''The ugly truth," declared Democratic chairman Howard Dean, ''is that skin color, age, and economics played a significant role in who survived and who did not." Likewise US Representative Barbara Lee, a California Democrat: ''If anyone ever doubted that there are two Americas, this disaster and our government's shameful response to it have made the division clear for all to see."

Well, there are two Americas. One is the America of Lee, Dean, and Jackson, in which color is paramount and no time is the wrong time to play the race card. The other is the America that has opened its hearts and wallets in a torrent of generosity and compassion for Katrina's victims. As of Monday, reports the Chronicle of Philanthropy, more than $760 million had been donated, a pace of giving without precedent in American history. And that includes only monetary contributions. There are also the immense offerings of in-kind goods of every description -- clothing, food, medicine, dishes, telephones, toys. Hundreds of thousands of volunteers have enlisted in the relief effort. Americans across the country have opened their homes to evacuees from New Orleans. In the words of a Red Cross spokeswoman, ''People are just pouring their hearts out."

And all without the slightest regard to race.

Americans of every color are helping Americans of every color, loving their neighbors as themselves, and proving by their selflessness yet again that racism is dead as a force in mainstream American life.***

28 posted on 09/14/2005 3:38:21 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

In America, poverty has more to do with Bad Habits than race.


29 posted on 09/14/2005 3:38:59 AM PDT by Fenris6 (3 Purple Hearts in 4 months w/o missing a day of work? He's either John Rambo or a Fraud)
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To: Fenris6
Unbelievable.

I guess initiative is not wanted in New Orleans.
30 posted on 09/14/2005 3:39:07 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Fenris6

Yes. And after bad habits are entrenched, they're learned by example.


31 posted on 09/14/2005 3:40:38 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

"At a time when unity is so important, the words of those who profit by keeping us apart are the last we should heed.

I think the idiot that wrote this cited the wrong people, these are some of the names he should have mentioned; Jessie Jackson, Al Sharpton, John Dean, Hellary Clinton.


32 posted on 09/14/2005 3:45:13 AM PDT by SeaBiscuit (God Bless all who defend America and Friends, the rest can go to hell.)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

There are a lot of parked cars under water in the ghettos of NO. These "victims" could have gone somewhere else but chose not to. They paid the price. White Americans should not take any of the blame for their lack of judgement in not driving to safety as so many thousands of their fellow citizens did.


33 posted on 09/14/2005 3:45:17 AM PDT by kittymyrib
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To: Shazbot29
New 'Code Word' Alert!

Indeed, the images of looting and violence were horrific, as a ruthless contingent of lawbreakers stole unneeded items, shot at police officers and worse.

15. Ruthless contingent of lawbreakers ;)

34 posted on 09/14/2005 3:47:42 AM PDT by elli1
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To: kittymyrib

I heard that many didn't leave because they were waiting for their welfare check to arrive. End of the month = no money to leave.

I don't think their welfare check arrived.


35 posted on 09/14/2005 3:50:24 AM PDT by listenhillary (The MAINSTREAM MEDIA is NOT a branch of government)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife
" ... Gangsta lifestyle. Welfare mentality. Developing nation. All code words often used as unflattering, veiled references to people of color ... "


Code words? I would think anyone, black or white, would recognize what those words mean.


No need for a "code" dictionary here. I mean one would have to be able to read to use it.



36 posted on 09/14/2005 3:52:03 AM PDT by G.Mason
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To: G.Mason

Music companies, hollywierd promote the bad ass Gangsta lifestyle for profit. Media does it's part and laps it up and spreads the glorification of evil.

Such role models we have.

Of course it is all Bush's FAULT that they do this.


37 posted on 09/14/2005 3:56:49 AM PDT by listenhillary (The MAINSTREAM MEDIA is NOT a branch of government)
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To: listenhillary

"Music companies, hollywierd promote the bad ass Gangsta lifestyle for profit."

Hence the stat that 80% are now born out of wedlock.

I still don't believe that stat. Someone please tell me its not correct.


38 posted on 09/14/2005 4:04:15 AM PDT by Fenris6 (3 Purple Hearts in 4 months w/o missing a day of work? He's either John Rambo or a Fraud)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

First of all, there were and still are non-blacks in NO, who not only may have lived that lifestyle but, also choose to stay for what ever reason.

Secondly, as always seem to happen, the damn truth hurts!


39 posted on 09/14/2005 4:05:04 AM PDT by wolfcreek
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To: Cincinatus' Wife
But such actions also helped some commentators push their own punitive political perspective,

So, who do you think he references here? It couldn't possibly mean that liberals were pushing any "punitive political perspective". Nah, never happens.

40 posted on 09/14/2005 4:06:13 AM PDT by patj
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To: Shazbot29

ROFLMAO!


41 posted on 09/14/2005 4:07:10 AM PDT by WillMalven (It don't matter where you are when "the bomb" goes off, as long as you can say "What was that?")
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

So true, so very true.


42 posted on 09/14/2005 4:09:08 AM PDT by PeteB570
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To: Cincinatus' Wife
...The larger implications of his words also are obvious...

Not to this 'journalist'. George Will notes there are just a few simple things you should do to statistically avoid poverty. Graduate High School, don't get pregnant, don't get married as a teenager, and don't get divorced.

These guidelines have nothing to do with race - they are choices made by individuals not programs administered by government.

43 posted on 09/14/2005 4:14:39 AM PDT by Oldeconomybuyer (The democRATS are near the tipping point.)
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To: kittymyrib

As has been pointed out by others since Katrina came ashore, many who stayed are dependent on welfare checks and no doubt worried they would not get their subsistence money.

How sad, to be tied to a pit because you believe you have no options.

I think it's time for Rush to have one of his "you can do it" shows.


44 posted on 09/14/2005 4:15:53 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

Eric Deggans


Eric Deggans Leaving TV Beat for Edit Board

Eric Deggans, one of the few African American television critics at a daily, leaves that beat in September to join the editorial board of his paper, Florida's St. Petersburg Times.

Deggans is also president of the Tampa Bay Association of Black Journalists.

His departure from the television beat leaves a vacancy in that slot.



******


Deggans points to what he calls "Endangered White Women Syndrome" - the glut of news coverage of missing white women

45 posted on 09/14/2005 4:15:58 AM PDT by kcvl
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To: listenhillary
" ... Such role models we have ... "


You mean roll over models? LOL


I do hope all readers will know that Mr.Eric Deggans is a but an apologist for the many failed Democrat Party programs.


Any, with stomach enough, may read his constant dribble in the St. Pete Slimes.



46 posted on 09/14/2005 4:16:18 AM PDT by G.Mason
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To: beyond the sea

And they look around and don't see any positive role models. Most don't have fathers and that is a big problem.


47 posted on 09/14/2005 4:16:24 AM PDT by mlc9852
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To: Cincinatus' Wife
>>>>Gangsta lifestyle. Welfare mentality. Developing nation. All code words often used as unflattering, veiled references to people of color.


Not if you've seen the white and Hispanic kids at your local public high school.
48 posted on 09/14/2005 4:19:43 AM PDT by .cnI redruM ( "Go ahead, punk, make my Earl Grey." - Mark Steyn)
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To: mlc9852

John Stossel
The value of private charity
August 24, 2005

When "Cheech," a street hustler, would stand outside my apartment building begging, I'd ask him why he was begging. He'd tell me about his gambling and family problems, and I'd repeatedly tell him, "Someone who speaks as well as you could do much more with his life," and I'd encourage him to consult New York City's Social Services agencies. I could have done more for Cheech personally, but I said to myself, "Better leave it to the specialists -- my city spends billions on social services -- they have specialists to deal with people like Cheech."

Multiply that thought by 296 million Americans, and you see how public assistance displaces private charity. And that's only the beginning of the damage.

Twice we've brought ABC's cameras to Delancey Street, a mutual aid charity in San Francisco. It's a collection of hundreds of former street people and ex-cons (18 felony convictions is the average) who live and work together and help each other out.

Delancey Street has been hugely successful. Thirteen thousand people have been through its programs. The ex-addicts now run a dozen businesses, including a restaurant and a moving company.

But Mimi Silbert, who started Delancey Street, says it almost didn't happen, because government kept getting in the way. "We have had to fight every bureaucracy that exists." Silbert doesn't employ certified teachers and drug counselors, so welfare workers tried to smother her with red tape. "If Jesus Christ walked in today and wanted to start Christianity, he wouldn't be able to do it because they say to him, 'You need two psychiatrists, you need one social worker, somebody has to sign the things . . . '"

Silbert wanted to help some of the worst-off people in America learn to be productive citizens. The government, which typically doesn't do anything more productive with those people than lock them up, release them and lock them up again, nearly stopped her with its complicated rules.

Fortunately, Silbert fought the bureaucrats and won, but many others are beaten down by the bureaucracy. Government often makes private charity so difficult, individuals stop trying.

I once thought there was too much poverty for private charity to make much of a difference. Now I realize that private charity would do much more -- if government hadn't crowded it out. In the 1920s -- the last decade before the Roosevelt administration launched its campaign to federalize nearly everything -- 30 percent of American men belonged to mutual aid societies, groups of people with similar backgrounds who banded together to help members in trouble. They were especially common among minorities.

Mutual aid societies paid for doctors, built orphanages and cooked for the poor. Neighbors knew best what neighbors needed. They were better at making judgments about who needs a handout and who needed a kick in the rear. They helped the helpless, but administered tough love to the rest. They taught self-sufficiency.

Mutual aid didn't solve every problem, so government stepped in. But government didn't solve every problem either. Instead, it caused more problems by driving private charity out. Today, there are fewer mutual-aid societies, because people say, "We already pay taxes for HUD, HHS. Let the professionals do it." Big Government tells both the poor and those who would help them, "Don't try."

Private charity develops a sense of personal responsibility for recipients, and it does something similar for donors, too. If I hadn't thought the government would take care of Cheech, I would've had to decide whether I thought he was worth my money -- money I could spend on myself and my family, or on promoting freedom, or on any number of charitable causes.

When you rely on the government to help those who need it, you don't practice benevolence yourself. You don't take responsibility for deciding whom to help. Just as public assistance discourages the poor from becoming independent by rewarding them with fixed handouts, it discourages the rest of us from being benevolent. This may be the greatest irony of the welfare state: It not only encourages the poor to stay dependent, it kills individuals' desire to help them.


49 posted on 09/14/2005 4:20:14 AM PDT by listenhillary (The MAINSTREAM MEDIA is NOT a branch of government)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

I guess Mr. Deggans just can't handle the truth.


50 posted on 09/14/2005 4:23:22 AM PDT by libertylover (Liberal: A blatant liar who likes to spend other people's money.)
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