THE OTHER SHOE DROPS: Updates To Previous Posts
† Now Is Not The Time To Talk About Race: After Barack Obama's disingenuous "race speech" back in March, The Stiletto argued that "Americans can not - should not - engage in a national dialogue on race relations until Rev. Jeremiah Wright and his counterparts at black churches nationwide are willing to participate in good faith" by which she meant honestly acknowledging that "HIV infection and drug addiction occur as a result of individual choices" and that the "so-called 'white privilege' ... is attributable largely to making individual lifestyle choices that enhance upward mobility."
In a Washington Post op-ed, City Journal's Kay Hymowitz adds another topic that an "honest" dialogue about race should include - an unequivocal acknowledgement that Pat Moynihan was right back in 1965 about the socioeconomic effects of rampant illegitimacy in the black population and that bowing to political correctness has harmed blacks more than Jim Crow, because "painful as the subject is, the alternative is far worse: racial inequality as far as the eye can see." Hymowitz makes her case:
Civil rights leaders, worried about reviving racist myths about black promiscuity, objected to what they viewed as blaming the victim. Feminists were inclined to look on the "strong black women" raising their children without men as a symbol of female autonomy. By the fall of 1965, when a White House conference on the black family was scheduled, the Moynihan report and the subject had disappeared.
But the silent treatment was the wrong medicine. Since 1965, through economic recessions and booms, the black family has unraveled in ways that have little parallel in human cultures. … Today, 70 percent of black children are born to single mothers. In some neighborhoods, two-parent families have vanished. In parts of Newark and Philadelphia, for example, it is common to find children who are not only growing up without their fathers but don't know anyone who is living with his or her biological father.
And what has this meant for racial progress? Fifty years after Jim Crow, black U.S. households have the lowest median income of any racial or ethnic group. Close to a third of black children are poor, and their chances of moving out of poverty are considerably lower than those of their white peers. The fractured black family is not the sole explanation for these gaps, but it is central. While half of all black children born to single mothers are poor, that is the case for only 12 percent of those born to married parents.
† Updates To Previous Posts (second item, The Right To Bear Arms Belongs To Us All: Part II): St. Louis Alderman Charles Quincy Troupe charges that district police commander told residents in the 1st Ward that “there was nothing he could do to protect us and the community ... that he didn't have the manpower,” so he is advising his constituents to “be ready to defend itself, because it's clear the economy is going to get worse, and criminals are getting more bold,” reports The Associated Press.
Here’s how Troupe explains his reasons for encouraging residents in his ward to take firearms safety courses and apply for concealed weapons permits – which MO’s state legislature approved in 2003 - to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch:
“These are God-fearing people. These are law-abiding citizens. They have a right to own a gun, and they have a right to carry a gun. …
They are being terrorized by this criminal element out here. Their No. 1 priority is trying to keep their children alive. Their black, male children. And that's a Herculean task.”
Now that Troupe is urging St. Louis residents to exercise their Second Amendment rights under the CCP law, violent and property crime should decrease, if the city’s recent history is any guide:
The Post-Dispatch notes that St. Louis is ranked No. 4 on a list of U.S. cities with the most
crime, and that just through October, there were 148 homicides in the city – a higher total than all of 2007.
[Hat Tip: The Heel, an Ivy-educated attorney with a prestigious New York firm, and occasional contributor to this blog.]
† Updates To Previous Posts (10 Reasons Michelle Obama Should Be Proud – Really Proud – Of America): This latest installment of The Stiletto Blog’s ongoing series meant to help instill the necessary pride of country in Michelle Obama’s consciousness to enable her to serve as an unofficial ambassador, should hit close to home for our First-Lady-To-Be: In what The New York Times calls a “Capraesque gesture,” Virginian Earl Stafford, an Air Force retiree who founded a successful military technology company, is organizing “The People’s Inauguration” for some 300 fellow Americans who are disadvantaged, terminally ill or wounded soldiers, and has ponied up more than $1 million for hotel rooms and meals for three nights, and two gala balls – for which he will outfit the neediest of his guests with gowns and tuxedos (the ladies will get up-dos on him, too). Stafford’s family runs The Stafford Foundation, a faith-based charitable organization.
† Updates To Previous Posts (The Keystone Kops Are Enforcing U.S. Immigration Laws): Federal lawmakers are calling for reform after the Houston Chronicle found more than 3,500 inmates serving time in Harris County for rape, child molestation and other violent crimes were released from jail despite admitting they were in the U.S. illegally, reports The Associated Press. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials said jailers did not give them the names of alien inmates. Rep. Kevin Brady (R-TX) and other TX Congressmen met with ICE to discuss steps the agency can take to ensure that criminal illegals eligible for deportation are removed from the U.S., and that criminal aliens not be get bailed out of custody. The representatives also wanted to know when an automated fingerprint check system ICE recently set up in Harris County Jail will be available statewide.
† Updates To Previous Posts (fifth item, Employers Hiring Forged Documented Aliens Are Lawbreakers In Other Ways, Too): Since 389 of its 1,000 employees were arrested in an immigration raid in May, kosher meatpacker Agriprocessors Inc. has been unable to find enough workers to replace them, reports The Associated Press:
It hired employment firms, recruited homeless people from Texas and even brought in workers from the tiny island nation of Palau.
But the plant hasn't been able to bring its staffing to more than half of pre-raid levels, causing Agriprocessors to cut its production drastically and then suspend it completely. …
Meatpackers across the country face staffing shortages if immigration agents continue to conduct such mass raids. Unless the administration of President-elect Barack Obama intervenes, companies could be left to choose between two risky alternatives: hire illegal workers and chance a raid or increase salaries to attract and retain legal workers at a cost of higher consumer prices. …
So according to AP, the Hobson’s choice is: You will have affordable meat slaughtered and processed by illegal aliens, or you will have none. But it was not always thus:
"There was a time when meatpacking plant jobs paid well, when there was no difficulty at all in obtaining native born workers " said Don Stull, a University of Kansas professor who studies immigration issues. "Beginning in the 1960s … wages were driven down and plants were moved to states where being a union member wasn't required."
Mark Lauritsen, packing house director for the United Food and Commercial Workers union, said the industry could save money by increasing its wages.
"The truth is, turnover in these facilities costs them in productivity and money," he said. "So it's to nobody's advantage to have these high turnovers (that raids produce). That's why you hear me say, let's find a way to make a job safer and easier and make it pay better because at the end of the day when people stop turning over, productivity goes up."
AP doesn’t mention that the cost of cheap meat also includes consumers having to turn a blind eye to Agriprocessors and other employers of illegal labor flouting workplace safety laws, wage and hour regulations and sexual harassment laws.
† Updates To Previous Posts (third item, Never Mind Marxism. Will An Obama Administration Be Totalitarian?): Testifying before the House State Government and Elections Committee about a proposed bill to deter improper records searches by state employees, whistleblower Vanessa Niekamp said that after OH Department of Job and Family Services Director Helen Jones-Kelley ordered her to look into child support records of Samuel J. Wurzelbacher (AKA “Joe the Plumber”), the agency’s Deputy Director, Doug Thompson, coerced her into sending an explanatory E-mail to the agency's information-security officer, which he “dictated word for word,” reports The Columbus Dispatch:
"Within an hour, I took the rest of the day off - again using my vacation time - and went directly to the office of the inspector general. I told them everything I knew about what happened."
House Bill 648, sponsored by Rep. Shannon Jones (R-Springboro), makes an improper background search by a state employee a first-degree misdemeanor, requires that the employee be fired and allows an Ohioan who is the target of an improper records search to sue. Under the legislation, state agencies would be obligated to:
Set criteria for determining which employees may access or authorize access to confidential, personal information; list valid reasons for accessing such information; fire any unclassified employee who violates rules by improperly accessing confidential personal information; record each specific access by employees of the state agency to confidential personal information; provide notice to citizens whose confidential personal information has been improperly accessed; allow a citizen to make a written request to an agency to identify all personal confidential information on that person maintained by the agency.
† Updates To Previous Posts (MSM, Obama Campaign: Joe Don’t Know Jack): Two “Joe the Plumber” items in a row! Guess that Nashville publicity firm he hired is paying off, because AdAge.com reports that Samuel J. Wurzelbacher has become “Joe The Brand,” with a book (“Fighting for the American Dream,”) scheduled to roll off press this month and a Website from which folks can purchase “Shop Joe” merchandise.
Editorial Note: The Stiletto confesses that she finds Joe kinda cute – well, more than kinda. No doubt other gals do, too.