Let’s face it. The election just past has been analyzed to death by class and race categories. The Obama campaign is entirely about class and race. Obama is a mulatto, black enough to qualify by choice as black. He appeals to blacks on the basis of his race. He talks about class all the time — the whole election was saturated with talk about “the middle class” from both sides. But nobody talked about the Lower Class. And the Upper Class was also missing — substituted was the “rich,” the “millionaires” and the “billionaires,” who were defined as those people making $200,000 or more per year. So lets get real about this stuff and not worry about who it might offend.
First, the Lower Class: The lower class consists largely of blacks and a significant proportion of Latinos who’ve decided to adopt black habits and attitudes. Lower Class Blacks are chronically unemployed, on welfare, in jail and on parole. That’s just a fact. And the black family structure has been so devastated by modern black culture that 75% of black children are born out of wedlock. Where are the black fathers of these children? Out smoking crack, stealing and laying about. Is there anything to be admired in a culture where the main musical genre is represented by “gangsta-rappers” whose musical vocabulary is dominated by terms such as “ho” (Whore), Bitch (mother, grandmother, sister, girlfriend) and “Nigga” (Somebody tell me what that means to the black fans of this filth). Is there anything to be admired about a culture that denigrates education and insults those who are ambitious achievers by calling them “white,” “honkies” and “Uncle Tom’s?” Is there anything to be admired in a culture where less than 50% of the children graduate from high school?
Not all blacks belong to this lower class. In this sense it isn’t about race at all. It’s about culture. Barack Obama, although not a member of this economic class, appeals to the lowest impulses of this cultural segment. He celebrates vulgar black cultural icons such as thug-rappers in White House parties. He tells members of the lower class that their malaise isn’t their fault and promises goodies and handouts to lessen their misery, and they lap it up. After all, many of them do vote.
So while blabbing unceasingly about the so-called middle class, both campaigns never even mentioned the “Lower Class.” Were they ashamed to admit that in America such a category even exists? Or were they afraid to let the discussion illuminate the predominant racial composition of this Lower Class and all this implies?
Now the Upper Class: Neither campaign uttered the words “Upper Class.” In Obama’s vernacular these were the “millionaires and billionaires earning over $200,000 per year.” In Romney’s vernacular these were “the well to do earning over $250,000 per year.” Why not call them the Upper Class? Well that might imply that these people are the well educated, the financially successful, and the socially sophisticated. In Obama’s Marxist world these people got into the Upper Class by exploiting the people in the classes below theirs. So they shouldn’t be dignified by the adjective “Upper.” In his world view there’s nothing admirable about people who achieve more than their peers, unless they be Hollywood celebrities (preferably black ones), entertainers (preferably black ones) or sports stars (preferably black ones). Whereas in Romney’s case he feared having himself identified as a member of the Upper Class of high achievers and rich people. No matter his language, it didn’t work for him under the barrage of Obama’s leftist smear machine. He was and is a member of the Upper Class, which is where most of our successful politicians come from and continue to reside. Those that deny this are fools or liars. The Democrat politicians’ instinct to pose as people from humble, if not impoverished origins is an ugly leftist mannerism that I suspect most educated/informed voters see right through.
Race and Republicans: Fifty years ago the black culture consisted of mostly intact families. (The out-of-wedlock birth rate among blacks was less than 25% compared to 70+% today.) Economic conditions were poor due to some extent to segregation in the South and racial attitudes in the North. However, in the aftermath of World War II blacks were making progress after having their opportunities expanded in war industries and through migrations North and West. Although educational achievement lagged, there was hope. The country was awakening the idea that black people deserved equal opportunity and fair treatment in voting, education, and justice. The civil rights era had dawned under a Republican President, Dwight D. Eisenhower. The most vocal opponents to civil rights legislation and desegregation were Southern Democrats such as Robert Byrd, “Bull” Conner, and George Wallace, among many others. Robert Byrd, a Democrat icon in the U.S. Senate was even a member of the Klu Klux Klan (KKK). It is significant that at that time Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. was a registered Republican, as was his father.
Subsequent to the passage of civil rights legislation, including court monitoring of state voting laws, court-ordered bussing of school children, quota-based hiring policies, came massive welfare expansions of the Kennedy, Johnson years. The black family structure was ripped apart and drugs and criminal activity among black men landed a large proportion of them in prison. The Democrats told them that they were not at fault, that their condition was caused by white racism and oppression. This mantra of the left continues unabated today under the supervision of President Obama and the lawlessness of Eric Holder, the supposed enforcer of the laws.
President Reagan’s successful reform of the welfare system, for a time, promised progress for impoverished blacks by encouraging employment, responsibility and self-esteem, and discouraging life on the dole. But activism and resistance from the left has caused the diseases of low expectations, victim mentality and an attitude of entitlement to persist among blacks. Not surprisingly their economic progress and educational achievement has languished.
The upshot of this is that the Republican message of enterprise, opportunity, responsibility and self-reliance does more good for blacks than the Democrat message, which is that blacks are not capable of competing in education, enterprise and leadership — so they most be sheltered and shepherded by wise liberals who will take responsibility for their welfare. The effective but never expressed message is that blacks are not capable of self reliance. They must be coddled by lowered standards, quotas and preferential government programs. So how is it that black people apparently respond at the ballot box to the Democrat message in preference to the Republican one? Are the Democrats correct in concluding that black people lack the mental capacity to make it on their own? Do blacks, themselves, accept that characterization? If not, that’s an opening for future Republican campaign themes.
Which brings us to the question of Latinos. First the question has to be asked: are Latinos a race? Or are they defined by a culture? Is race a defining characteristic, or is it the Spanish language that binds them together. Or should they be bound together at all? I’d argue that, once again, it’s a cultural and not a racial issue. Having spent several years in Mexico and Latin America I can assure you that “Latino” isn’t a race. In fact, most Latin Americans are acutely aware of class, some based on economic status, and some on ethnicity, in this case native Indian ancestry. But to define all Spanish speakers as a race makes not sense at all. Tell that definition on a white-skinned Spaniard and see what reaction you get.
So how do the Democrats leverage Latinos into their coalition? Well, for the Lower Class, mostly young Latinos who have adopted what is essentially a black cultural identity I guess that explains it. But a large proportion of the Latino population is in fact enterprising, educated and family oriented. Theirs is not a lower-class culture. It is not credible that they accept Democrats’ pandering appeal to the ignorant in the lower class. The only explanation is that Republicans haven’t grasped the reality that they can appeal to that segment of the Latino population that is culturally middle-class or upper-class. Many Latinos here in the Southwest (California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas) have lived self-sufficient lives since long before they became part of the U.S. Millions of others who immigrated here were then limited by language and education from wage jobs. Instead they turned to the free enterprise opportunities and built businesses and professions. They have thrived on American freedoms and opportunities. The Republican’s mistake has been to buy into the Democrat’s characterization of Latinos as a whole, being lumped in with the lower-class black population. If I were a middle class Latino who built a retail business or service from the ground up, as so many have, I’d be offended by this. Comparatively few of our Latino residents were illegal border crossers, so Republicans should not treat the whole community as questionable Americans. The political emphasis on illegal immigration paints this inaccurate picture. It is wrong and it is politically harmful. Surveys have shown that a large proportion (perhaps a majority) of legal citizens of Mexican origin resent illegal immigration as much as anyone else.
There are several politically relevant points to all of this. The first is that race matters very little in this discussion. What matters is culture. Culture, not economics or race defines class. The Marxist economics based definitions of class used by Democrat politicians to pander to one class while demonizing another are completely contrary to American culture and history. Have Americans now succumbed to the Marxist notions that the Lower Class (poor people) is somehow noble and the Upper Class (rich people) is evil? Maybe it has something to do with the fact that the Democrats’ Marxist ideology is supported by the indoctrination of children in government educational institutions and the leftist print and electronic news media. This notion is completely toxic and Un-American. Republicans must fight back against this Marxist ideology with an all-American message of progress, opportunity and prosperity through freedom for all.
The idea that those who will govern the country can or should emerge, as if by magic, from the Lower Class is patently absurd. Lower Class culture is neither admirable nor accomplished. We should wish for it to be improved and uplifted, not emulated and celebrated. Our elected public servants should be selected from the most admired among us. That means that public officials should have proven their metal as private citizens by rising into the Upper Class, and from there be selected by voters.
Republicans must first make up their minds not to emulate Democrats by pandering, especially not pandering that glorifies Lower Class culture, such as it is, or demonizes the Upper Class. Our message must be that a ladder of progress is available to all Americans of every class and culture. All it takes to get ahead in this country is willingness to climb that ladder — upward, from wherever one finds himself. We should stress that high achievement and wealth is to be admired and strived for by all who have that ambition. Republicans should be promoters of the idea that in America we don’t really have classes — we all belong to an admirable American class, the most privileged in the world. Race should be politically irrelevant and any temptation to pander to ethnicity should be quashed.
I’m enough of an idealist to still hope that there’s light at the end of the tunnel, and enough of a realist to realize that it won’t be easy. But giving up on the American dream of freedom, enterprise and opportunity isn’t an option.