This is an article I published in 2014, but recent events make it pertinent today. I’ll follow this in successive weeks with several related issues.
On August 30, 2012, PJ Media published my article titled “Up Next For Team Obama? Racial Quotas For School Discipline.” I wrote (in part):
This was not Mr. Holder’s only invocation of his dedication to ‘my people.’ On February 25, 2012, while giving a speech hosted by 100 Black Men of Atlanta Inc., Holder mentioned his determination to mandate racial quotas for school discipline:
‘We’ve often seen that students of color, students from disadvantaged backgrounds, and students with special needs are disproportionately likely to be suspended or expelled,’ Holder said in Atlanta, Ga.
‘This is, quite simply, unacceptable. … These unnecessary and destructive policies must be changed’ …
Holder attributed his claim of racial disparity in school discipline to a 2011 study that he said showed ‘83 percent of African American male students and 74 percent of Hispanic male students ended up in trouble and suspended for some period of time.’
On July 26, 2012, Neil Munro of the Daily Caller reported that Obama signed a related executive order:
[The order created] a ‘President’s Advisory Commission on Educational Excellence for African Americans.’ It will include senior officials from several federal agencies — including the Departments of Education, Justice and Labor…
This commission was established to promote:
‘ … a positive school climate that does not rely on methods that result in disparate use of disciplinary tools.’
‘African Americans lack equal access to highly effective teachers and principals, safe schools, and challenging college-preparatory classes, and they disproportionately experience school discipline,’ said the order, titled ‘White House Initiative On Educational Excellence.’
The composition of the commission clearly indicates Mr. Obama’s intentions: he plans to use the full force of the Department of Education to implement a racially based system that will prevent discipline for primarily black students — and other non-white students as electoral expediency requires – and such a system will be enforced through criminal and administrative sanctions by the Departments of Justice and Labor. If progressive tactics in other facets of law such as voting and the environment are any predictor, it is highly likely any rules and mandates will not only allow but also invite lawsuits against local schools. It is equally likely that an Obama administration goal is the abolishment of the in loco parentis (in the place of the parents) doctrine in disciplinary matters.
And so it has been. This movement to restrict school discipline based on purely racial quotas derived from race-based statistics, is spreading across the nation, as I noted in an August 19, 2013 article here at SMM, titled “On Race and Statistics-Based School Discipline.”
That article referred readers to a contemporaneous article at PowerLine linking to my work.
And now comes the invaluable Heather Mac Donald who has done groundbreaking work debunking the very race-based statistics upon which the Obama Administration and their supporters base this horribly destructive and racist initiative. At National Review Online, she writes:
The U.S. Education Department released yet another study Friday documenting the fact that black students are suspended and expelled at higher rates than white students. The Obama administration and civil-rights advocates routinely trot out this disparity to justify a strong federal hammer against allegedly racist school districts.
This latest Civil Rights Data Collection Snapshot includes preschool suspension rates for the first time, and they, too, are racially skewed: Black preschoolers are 42 percent of the students suspended once, and 48 percent of the students suspended more than once though they are only 18 percent of preschool enrollment. Pre-K suspensions are exceedingly rare, however: Fewer than 5,000 students out of over 1 million preschoolers were suspended once in the 2011 school year, 2,500 students more than once.
The usual suspects are cryng “racism,” and cannot imagine why black children, particularly pre-school children, would ever be disciplined or suspended from school. There is no mystery in this to rational teachers, nor to Ms. Mac Donald:
Actually, what Ms. Smith-Evans should be trying to fathom is the black crime rate, which explains the school-suspension rate. Black males between the ages of 14 and 17 commit homicide at ten times the rate of white and Hispanic males of the same age combined. Given such high crime rates, what do the civil-rights advocates and the Obama administration think is going on in the classroom — docile obedience and strict self-discipline? In fact, the same weak impulse control that leads to such high crime rates among young black males inevitably means more disruptive behavior in school.
Is Mac Donald actually suggesting that the behavior of children’s parents and the nature of their upbringing and homes—their culture–might have something to do with their behavior, and that these factors might be more meaningful than skin color?
If the civil-rights industry refuses to acknowledge the behavior that leads to disparate discipline rates, it is even more resistant to confronting the root of both the black school discipline and crime problems. In many urban areas, the black illegitimacy rate is well over 80 percent. Boys growing up without fathers are overwhelmingly more likely to lack self-discipline and the ability to control their anger than boys growing up with married parents. And those behavioral problems show up early. School administrators have been reporting rising violence among ever younger students for years. ‘We see aggressive behavior from kindergarten up,’ Lawrence Jointer, the director of hearings for the Alexandria, Va., school district told the Washington Post in 2012. ‘Student behavior has been worsening over the last four decades,’ he said.
McDonald, simple-minded racist that she is, actually suggests that contemporary schools are not only biased against boys, but suggests that because blacks commit crimes at many times the rate of whites, they are more likely to be disruptive in school too. Imagine that: she’s actually suggesting that students who are violent thugs outside of school don’t turn into veritable angels the moment they enter a school building.
“The refusal to take student behavior and family breakdown into account in interpreting student discipline rates means that more millions of taxpayer dollars will be wasted suing hapless school districts for phantom racism and sending teachers and administrators back to anti-racism training. The advocacy and anti-bias training complex cleans up, while the root cause of student misbehavior still goes unaddressed.
An example of statistic-driven analysis of the criminal justice system is available here. Additional writings–very revealing writings–on this topic by McDonald are available here and here, and an interesting analysis by the excellent Discover The Networks is available here.
This, gentle readers, is just one more facet of hope and change promised by Mr. Obama and delivered by his racialist and racist minions in the Departments of Justice, Labor, Education and elsewhere. If a Republican wins the White House, they’ll need eight years merely to neutralize the most destructive detritus left behind by Barack Obama. If a Democrat wins…the destruction may become so complete there is nothing to save.