Friday, September 25, 2009

What to do About the Underclass?

According to Wikipedia:

Potential Answers to the Underclass:

There is no consensus amongst social scientists as to how to solve the problem of the growing underclass... Some philosophers claim that without fundamental structural change, attempting to eliminate this underclass will do more harm than good.

My good friend UptheFlag posted just prior to this a treatise on Black crime statistics. The data is solid and I have no argument with the facts. Yet, it seems to me, these data provide a springboard to the next topic: what to do about it?

This statement by William Julius Wilson, in his book, The Truly Disadvantaged, is dead-on:

"[M]anufacturing industries have always traditionally been a big employer of inner-city African Americans, but are also very responsive to a wavering economy, and the recession-plagued 1970s put a lot of the manufacturing employees out of work. This decentralization of work has not only put a lot of inner-city African-Americans out of work, but has also served as another barrier impeding the impoverished from obtaining work. Without reliable means of transportation, it is unfeasible for the poor to be able to keep a steady job. The shift of jobs out of the inner-cities, paired with the shift of working, lower, and middle-class blacks out of the cities as well, have placed an even more important stress on the value of an education, which just is not a reality for the majority of the underclass. "

Exactly my point.

'Education,' as I said in a recent comment, is not highly valued in the black community and, again my opinion, will not become more valuable in the next 5- 10 years at least. That results in thousands more under-educated black youth attempting to 'survive' in the inner city.

It seems to me that what America needs, and needs to place on 'fast-track' status is a WPA project aimed directly towards this black, urban underclass. The pull-out from Iraq and Afghanistan would immediately free tens of billions of dollars to fund such a massive program. The reactionary right-wing would, needless to say, scream at both ideas, but let them howl all they want. Most don't live in large urban centers anyway so they are not directly involved nor exposed to the distress, drugs, and crime in that neck of the woods. Perhaps some in the right-wing would like to witness a massive black genocide, black-on-black murders, to eliminate 'them' altogether.

Nonetheless, the reality is that, unless a public works program can be assembled and implemented, the growing unrest in the central cities of nation will continue to fester. It doesn't take a grand study to figure out what can be done. Construction jobs with varying degrees of skills could easily put hundreds of thousands inner city black youth to work, giving them a sense of self-worth and financial stability.


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