More Insanity from the Obama Administration: Racial Balance in School Discipline

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Official photographic portrait of US President...

Official photographic portrait of US President Barack Obama (born 4 August 1961; assumed office 20 January 2009) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Obama justice department is pushing for racial balance in school discipline. On July 26 he gave an executive order to set up a panel funded by the federal government. This panel is empowered to find ways to lower the “disparity” of discipline between black and white students. In effect, school administrators will suspend more white students to have an allegedly more racially balanced discipline environment.

The fallacy is to move from (A) there is a disparity between the number of black students suspended vs. the number of white students to (B) such disparity reflects racial bias rather than the actual discipline situation. (B) does not follow from (A). If a higher percentage of black students commit suspendible offenses than white students, a “disparity” will take place, but that is not due to racism. If a predominately black school suspends more black students than white students, that would reflect the demographics of that school. School administrators, fearful of federal action, may set up a quota system in which every time a black student is suspended, a white (or perhaps an Asian) student will also be suspended.

This is the insanity of federal control at its finest, especially when the Obama Administration is filled with radical left wing race baiters. Putting in a quota system would inevitably result in a white student or Asian student being suspended for a relatively minor offense in order to keep “racial balance.” The same situation would take place with other forms of school discipline such as expulsion or (in the South) paddling.

It is well known that in many urban areas in the United States the black family has been in crisis for years, and the lack of two-parent families and high illegitimacy rates along with limited parental discipline lead to a hotbed of crime. Children sometimes can escape such a background, but it is difficult. Thus, many black children are coming to school as behavioral challenges. Note that the same process is starting with white families, with the white illegitimacy rate around 26% and rising. If this rises more, the suspension rates most likely will balance out. To ignore individual discipline situations and place a quota system (or even to bring “racial balance” into the discipline equation) is madness. Such a system will automatically be unfair.

Like forced busing, “racial balance” in school discipline is another federal social engineering scheme that is doomed to failure. It will lead to more whites and Asians fleeing public schools. If a private school accepts federal aid, that school will be vulnerable to be placed under Mr. Obama’s executive order. Will higher education be next? After all, colleges and universities who accept students with federal grants and loans are vulnerable to federal regulation.

This executive order is another reason to vote for Mr. Romney. Mr. Obama is bringing the country back to the age of race-based quotas in education and jobs. In the meantime, if the government panel makes recommendations that are adopted by federal regulators, schools will be forced to be unjust to white and Asian students in the administration of discipline. How far is this administration willing to go in pushing its vision of racial balance onto the world? Very far, I think, and that is frightening.

Stop Being So Sensitive!

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I am utterly sick of sensitive people–not those “sensitive” in a good way, but those people who are professionals at being offended in order to get their way or get money. Those after money are only different in degree than someone who points a gun at someone and says, “Hand over your money.” Discussing certain issues is taboo at many colleges and universities due to the intimidation and (sometimes) violence of the left. Consider what has happened to conservative speakers who come to college and university campuses. While some are treated with respect, others have been shouted down or threatened physically (as Tom Tancredo was treated a few years ago at UNC-Chapel Hill, when a brick was thrown through a window by a thuggish group and

English: The Old Well and McCorkle Place at th...

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his talk was cancelled for the sake of everyone’s safety). In other cases, academics have lost their jobs when they criticized the politically correct mainstream–I know one personally. Most of them have either gotten their jobs back or been given a settlement since, thus far, the courts have respected freedom of speech. That could change in the future as Mr. Obama‘s appointments pile up in the federal judiciary.

Stifling discussion of controversial issues or only allowing one side to express itself does not allow room for learning and discussion. Some of the most productive class discussions I have experienced are when I bring up controversial topics or express “non-politically correct” positions. For example, I am morally opposed to abortion even in cases of rape or incest. Usually I am the only person in class holding that positions, and students are free to argue with me (and they do–vehemently). I learn something from their arguments and hopefully they learn something from mine. What if some “sensitivity Fascist” had said that my position on abortion should no longer be part of the “public square” because it offends some people? Since when did college and university students gain the right not to be offended. I do not mind the Marxist professor two doors down from me expressing his views to his classes as long as students are free to disagree and are not penalized for their positions. Sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander, and if Marxist positions can be presented, so can conservative positions in economics, morals, philosophy, and/or religion.

There are so many issues on which this nation is deeply divided–sexual ethics, racial issues, gender issues, issues regarding the role of government in combating poverty, issues surrounding health care. If discussion is halted just because someone is “offended,” this only serves to increase resentment on the part of those who disagree with the position of the professional sensitive person. We become even more divided and angry at one another. The best way for the culture war to become a true war rather than a war by means of language is to stifle discussion.

If “sensitivity training” really dealt with bad behavior, I suppose there would be no problem with it–men and women are wrong if they are in a supervisory position and request sexual favors from an employee before they promote that employee. That is unethical and illegal, and it should be. If someone constantly tells sexual jokes after being warned not to several times, that is bad behavior that can and should lead to termination from a job. But a man who is of equal rank in a company to a woman surely has the right to ask her out unless the company forbids inter-employee dating. Often a woman really will have plans on the day the man wanted to go out, so he will ask her again. Now if she says no then, if I am not mistaken, society generally says “two time’s the charm” and the man should not ask her out again (although there are men who married women whom they asked out many times–and they remain happily married). If some professional sensitive woman whines about sexual harassment when a man asks her out in a nice way on a date, this is oversensitive behavior from someone who either hates men, is a psychopath, enjoys hurting people, or wants easy money. Have some common sense, folks!

Racial issues have become so sensitive that many people won’t talk about them lest someone be offended. I do not deny that there are racists in our society–every society has them–and that sometimes racists will discriminate against those of a different race. When the race card is overplayed, however, in cases in which it is unwarranted, eventually any racial incident comes across as “crying wolf” and genuine incidents of racial prejudice may be unnecessarily ignored. When any criticism of Mr. Obama’s policies is labeled “racism,” that ignores the fact that many people disagree with the President’s policies–including some who voted for him. I do not hate or even dislike Mr. Obama, but I disagree with a number of his policies–and that does not make me a racist. I am a conservative, so of course I will disagree with Mr. Obama on some points. What else would you expect?

Liberals gain their power by playing on the sensitivity and resentments of people. They play up the envy the poor have for the middle classes and the wealthy. They emasculate man by calling any comment “sexist” that does not fit their radical feminist agenda of changing human nature, either by denying differences between males and females or trumping up “female virtues” as superior to “male virtues.” Those positions are self-contradictory, of course, but to the liberal, especially to the “postmodern” liberal, coherence is not a truth preserving condition.

As outspoken as I am, I keep some positions to myself, not because they are wrong, but because I know there would probably be a professional sensitive person in the audience who would misrepresent my beliefs–knowingly. On religious and moral issues I am more outspoken. Political issues are not values free, but they are contingent matters about which people even of similar world views disagree, and I must pick my battles. But I have grown more outspoken over the years because I am sick of a false, hypocritical “sensitivity” stifling discussion, especially of conservative positions, on issues important for the good of society.