Posted on November 1, 1992

O Tempora, O Mores! (November, 1992)

American Renaissance, November 1992

The Riots Rumble On

Jack Kemp, Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, thinks that “enterprise zones” will rejuvenate rotting neighborhoods. Enterprise zones are a form of affirmative action, in which employers get huge tax incentives to open businesses in black ghettos.

One of the most interesting test case enterprise zones happens to be South-Central Los Angeles. It was one of the most heavily subsidized business hand-out programs in the country, and it was supposed to lift underclass blacks out of poverty. In fact, it did give a boost to minorities but they were the wrong minority: Koreans. They were recent immigrants who would probably have opened businesses somewhere else in Los Angeles, but who could not resist the lure of tax credits, rent subsidies, and 15-year carry-forwards. As we know, 800 of those new Korean businesses were burned by rioters.

Secretary Kemp likes to say that lavishing advantages on black neighborhoods will foster entrepreneurs and give residents “a stake in their communities.” Secretary Kemp seems not to have noticed that they already have a stake in their communities. They live there. If that doesn’t make them behave it is hard to imagine what will.

Déjà Vu?

Last August, a 23-year-old black university student was shot in an altercation with a white policeman. Several hundred blacks then went on a rampage, smashing shop windows, looting, and overturning cars. Riot police joined the municipal force in restoring order, and patrolled the campus for several days.

Any reader who can guess the unlikely locale where this took place deserves a prize. It was Moscow. The students were at Patrice Lumumba University, named after the Congolese independence leader and established at the height of the Cold War to teach Marxism to Africans. The students were no doubt engaged in revolutionary struggle.

¿Dónde Está Los Estados Unidos?

Professor David Hayes-Bautista of UCLA is a third-generation Mexican-American but he still sends his daughter to Mexico for tennis lessons. He is the head of the Chicano Studies Research Center at the university, and concludes that Mexican immigration is unlike immigration from any other nation because the proximity of the mother country keeps ethnic identification strong. “We could come back in 100 years and the Latinos will not have assimilated in the classical sense,” he says.

Perhaps Prof. Hayes-Bautista’s children would like to enter the Mexico In My Life contest sponsored by the Mexican consulate at Houston and by the Association for the Advancement of Mexican Americans. The contest is open to children under 18, and submissions can be in the form of a drawing or an essay.

Perhaps the professor’s grand children will attend J.R. Harris Elementary School, likewise in Houston. There, the heavily Hispanic student body already celebrates Fiestas Patrias, Mexican independence from Spain, with an impressive display of Mexican flags — one per student.

¿Dónde Está Los Estados Unidos? (II)

Carlos Salamanca is a member of the school board in district 15 of Brooklyn (NY). He is an immigrant from Colombia, so he speaks Spanish. He does not, however, speak English, so the school board must provide him with an interpreter when he attends meetings.

Jack Spatola, principal of Public School 172 says, “He [Mr. Salamanca] has become a symbol of what can be accomplished.” As he explains, “We also have very much need, especially for our youths, to have role models.” Perhaps Mr. Spatola could do with an interpreter, too.

Mr. Salamanca was appointed to his position to fill a vacancy, but is considering running for the office when his term is up. He is not an American citizen, but that makes no difference. He is eligible to serve, and the many non-citizens whose children attend school in Brooklyn are eligible to vote for him.

Macho in Miami

Miami, which was 90 percent white in 1960 but is now 10 percent white, has the highest crime rate in the country. One of the contributors to crime appears to be Hispanic machismo. On September 19th, a man driving a Chevrolet Malibu with three lady passengers was stopped at a light. A Mercury Cougar pulled up along side with 16-year-old Christopher Calderon in the passenger seat. Mr. Calderon “looked” at the women in the blue Malibu. The driver of the Malibu, described as a dark-skinned Hispanic, did not care for this. He drew a gun, fired several shots at Mr. Calderon, killing him, and drove away.

Meanwhile, Southern Florida is hampered by an unexpected problem in its attempt to restore electricity to the areas blacked out by Hurricane Andrew. Many miles of power lines were knocked down and could simply have been restrung — if thieves had not stolen them. Copper wire is showing up by the truck load at junk yards and metal recyclers all over Southern Florida. Police have made a few arrests.

Macho in Los Angeles

In Los Angeles, Hispanics are demonstrating a different kind of machismo. First of all, they are joining gangs and killing each other in even greater numbers than are Los Angeles blacks. In 1991, 179 blacks died in gang violence but 340 Hispanics — nearly twice as many — also did. Generally, gang murder does not cross racial lines; blacks kill blacks and Hispanics kill Hispanics.

There is an interesting difference, however, in the mentality of black and Hispanic gangs. Black gangs, especially the Bloods and the Crips, trace their roots to the anti-white, chip-on-the-shoulder mentality of the 1960s, and claim to be victims of “racism.” Hispanics do not. As a member of a Los Angeles gang called Barrio Mojados proudly explains:

You won’t see my people out there protesting, saying: ‘They did this to us or that to us because we’re Mexicans. We don’t cry.’

Safe Schools

Prairie View A&M University is a small college located in rural Texas. From its size and setting, one would hardly expect lawlessness to be a problem, but its rate of violent crimes by students is nearly 30 times higher than those of the state’s large urban campuses such as the University of Texas and Texas A&M. These lop-sided figures came to light because of a Texas law passed last year requiring colleges to provide crime data to employees and students. Prairie View is historically black.

Who Hates Whom?

Barbara Byrd of Marietta (GA) is a white woman married to a black man. She was interviewed recently by a local newspaper about interracial marriage, and gained some local prominence as a result. Afterwards, she wrote this about her experience:

As a member of a local support group for interracial families, my phone was inundated with calls from people seeking information. A disheartening number of those calls were negative, hostile, and even intimidating. I was prepared to field the usual white racist calls. None came.

What did come were numerous complaints from black women about ‘race mixing.’

These hate callers accused those involved in cross marriage of damaging the black family structure, of ignoring the needs of the black child, and of breaking some higher law.

Who Hates Whom? (II)

Santa Clara County (CA) has a Hate Crimes Coordinator, Anastasia Steinberg, who has held the position since early 1991. In her public statements she has frequently claimed that the profile of the average hate criminal is “a white male between 19 and 26.”

An organization called the European American Study Group (2341 Darnell Court, San Jose, CA 95133) has just released police statistics that show Miss Steinberg is wrong. The group found that in 1991 the ethnic breakdown of San Jose hate crime victims and suspects was as follows:

No. of Victims No. of Suspects
White 27 22
Black 17 16
Hispanic 19 42
Asian 12 10
S.W. Asian 15 1

Clearly, of all groups, whites were more likely to be victims than perpetrators of hate crimes, and were only 24 percent of all suspects. There were also nearly twice as many Hispanic as white suspects. It seems curious that an official whose job it is to fight racial bias should publicize a criminal “profile” that appears to reflect nothing more than . . . racial bias.

Can the Teachers Teach?

California is trying to reverse the decline in school performance by testing its teachers. As in all states that give tests, teachers of different races pass at different rates: Eighty percent of whites pass, but only 35 percent of blacks and 51 percent of Hispanics do. Public Advocates, a San Francisco law firm, has filed a suit on behalf of non-whites that would do away with the test. They claim that it is “culturally biased” and is a “surrogate IQ test.” Even if the tests were culturally biased, they reflect the culture in which we live and learn.

Germany for the Germans

A poll released in September shows that more than half of all Germans say that the anti-immigration slogan “Germany for the Germans” is largely justified. One quarter of all Germans agree with the slogan “Foreigners Out.” What might Americans think about the slogan “America for the Americans”?

Heroin Returns

The crack epidemic seems to have reached its peak. The proportion of the population using crack appears to have stabilized, and the most violent and crazed users are now dead. Drug use, however, tends to come in cycles, with a fashion for sedatives following a fashion for stimulants.

Heroin is thus making a comeback and the estimated number of heroin users, 500,000 to one million, is on the rise again. In Baltimore, emergency room visits for heroin overdoses are up 130 percent over the previous year, and in Atlanta they are up 118 percent. In Detroit, the last half of 1991 saw a 55 percent rise over the same period in 1990.

Many addicts now use both crack and heroin. They smoke crack for excitement and inject heroin to calm down. Since heroin users often share needles, the return of heroin will raise the number of AIDS cases.

Texas Train Wreck

During her first 17 months in office, Texas Governor Ann Richards’ one thousand or so political appointments have been an almost perfect reflection of the racial mix in her state. Her appointments (with population percentages in parentheses) have been: 62.9 (60.3) percent white, 20.8 (25.9) percent Hispanic, 14.5 (11.9) percent black and 1.8 (1.9) percent other.

Gov. Richards does not even pretend that her appointments are based on pure ability. Before she was even inaugurated, she announced that she had deliberately chosen a Hispanic woman, Lena Guerrero, to head the Texas Railroad Commission. “I want the appointment of Lena to send a message,” she explained.

Miss Guerrero seems to be sending a message of her own. It was recently discovered that she lied about her qualifications for the job by inventing a bachelors degree she was never awarded. She then claimed that she had been only four credit hours short of a degree, but when her college transcript was made public it showed that she was 19 hours short.

When she was a student, Miss Guerrero failed several courses, including one called Mexican Americans in the Southwest. She failed some courses twice, and had a C-plus average. This did not prevent her from claiming a fictional membership in the academic honor society, Phi Beta Kappa. Miss Guerrero refuses to step down from the Railroad Commission and her friend in the governor’s mansion is, so far, disinclined to give her a push.