By Dr. Harold Pease
One issue, among many, that isn’t dealt with in our presidential debates is government-sponsored racism. Almost all government forms require the filer to state his race. This accentuates race consciousness. The 2010 U.S. Census, requiring race identity, has only 11 categories; sadly, American is not one of them. Most of us are a mixture of many nationalities, even races, but American is never one of the choices allowed on any government form. We need to minimize our differences and be tolerant, but are constantly reminded of differences and the government is the greatest offender.
Mandated governmental statistics are submitted and comparisons are made with the intent of proving racial inequality and accentuating differences. Forgotten is the inevitability that if you look for inequality long enough, you eventually will find it. Race baiters (those who see and point out race in everything) have no problem finding it in everything. Moreover, monies are distributed on the basis of race to “fix” alleged differences which further accentuates prejudice, then racism. It becomes a cycle and is fueled by government who tries to right every wrong but in doing so creates other wrongs. It almost seems purposeful.
Consider the millions recently handed out by the U.S. Department of Education to four colleges in Kern County, California, solely on the basis of race. They are designated Hispanic-serving institutions, defined by having enrolled at least 25 percent full-time Hispanic undergraduates. This federal program, known as STEM, is focused to increase the Hispanic student college-going rate in science, technology, engineering, and math. The participating colleges will be dividing 31 million dollars over the next five years. Last year two of the four colleges divided 6.7 million dollars (The Bakersfield Californian, Sept. 27, 2011 p.3). The program, a part of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended, is “to assist Hispanic Serving institutions to develop and carry out activities to improve and expand their capacity to serve Hispanic and other low-income students” (Taft Independent, Oct. 8, 2011).
Some serious questions arise from this. How can a near bankrupt nation, in light of its 15 trillion dollar national debt passed to our children making them future slaves, do this? Also, how many of the recipients are illegally within the United States? How can money extracted from our tax-payers be given to people of other nations when our own need it so? These are issues for another time. More pertinent to this article is the question, why should any race be treated differently than any other? When money is distributed specifically on the basis of color, how is this not racism? When Blacks, Asians, Native Americans, or even Whites, who are fast becoming a minority in California, see this, don’t they expect their fair share too. Doesn’t this breed race consciousness, then racism, and then potential conflict?
What is most bothersome is that two notions are accepted as fact and never questioned: all are abused except whites, and whites are always the abusers of others. Race on same race prejudice is never treated, and the government seems uninterested in evidence of our actually coming together. After all we did elect a black president. Chances are everyone has experienced some abuse, and government is incapable of solving all problems or even most problems without first taking a portion of your freedom. Could this be the intended outcome?
The argument in favor of race-based government programs is that “we are only making up for the racism of the past.” In doing so, aren’t we also producing the evidence for race-based favoritism in the future as the descendants of those prejudiced now to “right” a perceived wrong can use the same logic in the next generation to extract favors from the children of current favorites? Racism then has no end and government is its major facilitator.
So what would happen if the government ceased baiting racism? It would slowly subside. The American melting pot has handled this better than any other nation on earth. It does so gradually, almost unperceptively, primarily through natural intermingling and intermarriage. Most of us are not pure anything. Most have learned not only to get along but to appreciate one another’s diversity in foods, holidays, music, customs and etc. Our diversity is our greatest asset outside liberty.
Dr. Harold Pease is an expert on the United States Constitution. He has dedicated his career to studying the writings of the Founding Fathers and applying that knowledge to current events. He has taught history and political science from this perspective for over 25 years at Taft College. To read more of his weekly articles, please visit www.LibertyUnderFire.org.