Friday, May 2, 2014
Don't Blame Segregation
The May issue of the liberal iconic magazine The Atlantic has a major article on the return of segregation in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. The children at the nearly all black schools are getting a bad education. Is it the fault of racist school district policies, or is there another reason that liberals don't want to acknowledge?
The article details how schools that were on the path to integration in the 1970's and 1980's have regressed to divided schools that are predominately white or nearly completely black. The majority white schools are doing okay, but the predominately black schools have seen terrible results. The black schools had less experienced teachers and fewer Advanced Placement courses. A school superintendent said the black schools are a dumping ground for bad teachers. The reader is left with the idea that if only the schools went back to greater integration, everything would improve greatly.
The article completely misses the fact that much of the poor results of these schools can be blamed on a damaging home culture. Among blacks, the rate of births outside of marriage is over 70 percent. There is also a high percentage of teen pregnancies. Combined, we get a bunch of poorly educated single mother households with no positive father figure in the home. Isn't this a recipe for educational disaster?
The high school dropout rate of children from single parent homes is double that of children from two parent homes. Even if the student does not drop out, he or she is going to do worse in school. Single parent households earn half the income as two parent homes. A single mom may be working two or more jobs and does not have the time and often does not have the skills to help her children improve their reading and math abilities. The role model at home of not completing school or not valuing post high school education contributes to underachievement at school.
Being raised by a single mom does not doom a child to a life of poverty. The famous brain surgeon Ben Carson was raised by a single mother who married in her teens and could not read, but she made her sons read two books a week and give her a report. She also insisted that they attend church each week. The Carson boys had cultural values missing in most poor households.
The recent best seller, The Triple Package: How Three Unlikely Traits Explain the Rise and Fall of Cultural Groups in America by Amy Chua and Jed Rubenfeld explains that success can be traced to three attributes - having a superiority complex, insecurity about one's standing, and impulse control. It has nothing to do with poverty, school location, or racism. Many people have succeed in life by embracing and following this traits combination.
Liberals would have you believe that success needs government interference such as busing and judicial control of schools in order for minorities to succeed.
They are wrong.
There would be much better long term results if instead we had a society that encouraged people to marry before having children and staying married to raise their children. Parents who teach their children that they are great, but need to work hard to do better than their peers, and must have disciple in life will see their children succeed without resorting to relying on bureaucrats to determine the success or failure of their children.
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