The View From 1776

What’s The Real Deal In Ferguson?

We are confronted with a fundamental Constitutional issue: protecting the rights of individuals against mindless mobs in the streets.

Only liberal-progressives could feel justified in mobilizing a media campaign to incite further rioting, believing that “caring” in the abstract for “victims of oppression” trumps maintenance of law and order for the benefit of all citizens, black and white. 

Only liberal-progressives could ignore the rights of innocent residents whose property was vandalized in Ferguson and elsewhere; after all, in socialist ideology, capitalism and property ownership are evils that must be controlled or eliminated by collectivized government in the name of social justice. 

Only liberal-progressives could attribute to racism the anger of the majority of Americans when they see gangs of people in the nighttime streets looting and burning businesses of people who had nothing whatever to do with the Ferguson incident. 

Only liberal-progressives could dismiss legitimate grievances of citizens alarmed by rampant crime among young black males and the readiness of their elders to blame the white community for conduct that raises fear for the survival of our political society. 

Only liberal-progressives could sneeringly dismiss people with those concerns as racists who “cling to their Bibles and guns.”

In Class Prejudice Resurgent (New York Times, December 1, 2014), columnist David Brooks correctly observes that the Ferguson fulminations are different from civil rights issues.  He doesn’t, however, note that more fundamentally Ferguson represents refusal of liberal-progressives and their black political supporters to accept responsibility for their own actions.  Liberal-progressive hippies and flower children were fond of spiritual concepts such as karma, but failed to understand its substance: you reap what you sow.

Responding to one of liberal-progressives’ gauzy platitudes, Mr. Brooks writes:

It’s often said after events like Ferguson that we need a national conversation on race. That’s a bit true. We all need to improve our capacity for sympathetic understanding, our capacity to imaginatively place ourselves in the minds of other people with experiences different from our own. Conversation can help, though I suspect novels, works of art and books like Claude Brown’s “Manchild in the Promised Land” work better.

But, ultimately, we don’t need a common conversation; we need a common project. If the nation works together to improve social mobility for the poor of all races, through projects like President Obama’s My Brother’s Keeper initiative, then social distance will decline, classism will decline and racial prejudice will obliquely decline as well.

In a friendship, people don’t sit around talking about their friendship. They do things together. Through common endeavor people overcome difference to become friends.

Mr. Brooks’s “common endeavor” is a pipe dream. 

As I noted in Ferguson Again, the root cause is President Lyndon Johnson’s 1960s Great Society welfare state, which destroyed the cohesion of so many black families and spawned large numbers of black young men raised in single-parent, welfare-addicted households.  Liberal icon Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan predicted at the time that the result was going to be black neighborhoods terrorized by remorseless, conscienceless young black men.  One of those was Ferguson’s Michael Brown.