Posted on February 1, 1993

O Tempora, O Mores! (February, 1993)

American Renaissance, February 1993

Crossing the Bar

The bar association of the city of New York has officially recommended that the New York State bar exam be overhauled so that more non-whites can pass it. The association admits that it has no idea just what it might be about the exam that is biased against non-whites — it did not even bother to look over a copy of the exam — but it is convinced that test bias is a serious problem that must be corrected.

Ironically, the bar association does not even know what the disproportion in white and non-white pass rates is because the Board of Law Examiners, which administers the test, does not keep statistics by race. In fact the examiners do not even keep records by name of applicant; in order to eliminate any kind of bias in grading, each test paper is given a number so that the results are scored anonymously. The New York City bar association says all this is just a ruse by the examiners so they can avoid collecting statistics by race that would show how biased the test really is.

The bar association has several reasons for thinking that non-whites are more likely to fail. First of all, California keeps racial statistics on pass rates and has found that first-time test-takers fail at the following rates: blacks — 69 percent, Hispanics — 60 percent, Asians — 43 percent, whites — 27 percent. New York State law schools informally reported to the bar association that their graduates were failing the bar exam at about these rates.

What to do? The bar association considered recommending that the bar exam be abolished. Short of that, it wants the exam systematically vetted for “bias” and wants the Board of Law Examiners to hold training sessions for applicants. But what it most wants are accurate racial statistics on pass rates so it can monitor how “unfair” the examination is. [The Record of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York, Vol. 47, No. 5, June 1992, pp. 464ff.]

Of course, these statistics will only show that even after college and law school, most blacks and Hispanics do not learn enough to pass the exam. The next step would be to use racial statistics for a kind of “race-norming,” so that a certain proportion of blacks is always given a passing grade despite inadequate performance on the test.

Spurning Harvard

Although 171 blacks were admitted to this year’s freshman class at Harvard, only 95 chose to attend. The admissions department decided to find out why the other 76 went elsewhere. The most common reason was that Harvard does not give all blacks full scholarships. Blacks from rich families have to pay their own way just like white people. Other universities pick up the tab for all blacks no matter how rich their parents, so those schools are more attractive. Several of the blacks who turned down Harvard to get full scholarships elsewhere came from families with incomes of more than $100,000. [Affirmative Action Queens, Heterodoxy, Oct. 1992.]

First Things First

Somalia is reportedly unable either to feed itself or let foreigners distribute food. This explains our current forced-feeding mission to that country. Something Somalia does manage to do is import $100 million a year worth of a plant called khat. Chewing khat leaves releases an amphetamine stimulant favored by bandits and Somali war lords. People are restless and irrational when they chew khat, and there is always more shooting when the supply is good.

The best khat comes from Kenya, and must be flown in daily while it is still fresh. A khat chewer may go through $6.00-worth in a day, which could buy enough grain to feed six people for a week. At that rate, the $100 million a year the country spends on khat could feed the estimated 3.6 million people of Somalia for about seven months.

Here They Come

One of the inevitable consequences of our military venture in Somalia will be that large numbers of Somali “refugees” will end up in the United States. The city of Chicago has gotten its first taste. A Lutheran group spent more than $30,000 on air fare to fly in Hussein Hassan Mohamed, along with one of his two wives, and 22 of his children (ages 4 to 36). The Lutherans also bought clothes, food, and household goods for the Hassans, and rented three apartments for them.

The Hassans speak little English and need a great deal of medical attention, but appear to like their new home. “We’d like to stay here,” Mr. Hassan told a reporter. What about ever returning to Somalia? “I might go see it and visit it,” he says.

Here Come Some More

Anyone who doubts that the operations in Somalia will result in a flood of “refugees” need only consider the case of Iraq. Twelve thousand of the Iraqi soldiers captured during the Gulf War refused to be repatriated, and another 17,000 fled the country in the aftermath of the war. Saudi Arabia has built comfortable camps for these people but refuses to grant them asylum and does not let them outside the camps. Ever the easy touch, the United States has agreed to take 3,000 Iraqis under a resettlement program that is expected to cost $21 million. Since tens of thousands are still stuck in Saudi Arabia we can be sure that many more will eventually come to America. If we end up with thousands of people with whom we were at war, how many more will we take in of a people we are presumably trying to rescue from starvation?

Up From the Projects

Readers may be interested in a new book called Up From the Projects: Noteworthy African Americans Who Once Lived in Public Housing. Included in this group are Ohio congressman Louis Stokes and his brother Carl Stokes, who is a municipal court judge in Cleveland. Football player Leonard Lyles, producer Keenen Ivory Wayans, and Milwaukee School Superintendent Howard Fuller are also reported to have once lived in public housing. [Betty Winston Baye, When we leave our children behind, Louisville C-J, no date or page.]

Death to the White Man

The Pan African Congress (PAC) of South Africa has a simple way of seeking “justice” for the past practices of apartheid: Kill all white people. George Mpaya, head of the PAC youth movement explains that the strategy of elimination will be “one settler, one bullet.”

“They are not being attacked as whites per se,” he explains; “They are attacked as defenders of the apartheid system.” The reasoning is that every white over the age of six or seven has benefited unjustly from apartheid and must therefore die. Mr. Mpaya concedes that some white South Africans have opposed apartheid, but they are too few to worry about. “There is no way we can punish ourselves by trying to search for one innocent person out of a million people.”

The only good white is a dead white. Five people were killed and 40 injured in the first two “operations,” carried out in November and December. Many more are promised. [Jerelyn Eddings, Enemies of the People, Louisville C-J, Dec. 13, 1992, A21.]

’Twas the Season

In Chicago, employees of Montgomery Ward, readers of the Chicago Sun-Times, and listeners to WBBM radio joined a campaign to buy and donate hundreds of Christmas gifts to be given to poor children. Some of the gifts were taken to a virtually all-black school in the Cabrini-Green housing project, where 30 parents volunteered to sort and arrange them for presentation to the children. During the sorting session, parents unwrapped presents and took whatever they wanted, in a scene that the school’s principal, Marshall Taylor, described as “complete chaos.”

Within 24 hours, Montgomery Ward found replacements for the 300 stolen gifts. [New batch of gifts given school after looting by parents, Houston Chronicle, 12/25/92.]

Guarding the Border

Mexico has halted the import of second-hand clothing from the United States because it claims that much of it is infected with herpes, syphilis, and AIDS. It was news to American health officials that clothing could catch herpes, but Mexican customs officials said they were barring entry to tons of clothing as a health measure. Customs officials also conceded that halting imports would help Mexican clothing manufacturers. [Reuters, Mexico stops U.S. used clothes imports, Houston Chronicle, Dec. 25, 1992.]

Low Tide for the Ocean of Soul

It has been widely reported that the Texas Southern University (TSU) marching band was disbanded after some of its members went on a $22,000 shoplifting spree during a trip to Japan. It was considerably less widely reported that TSU is “historically black” and that the band, known as the Ocean of Soul, is all black.

Tokyo shopkeepers, who scarcely ever suffer from shoplifting, take few precautions against theft and sometimes even display merchandise on shelves set up on the sidewalk. Even so, they were amazed at the brazenness of band members who made off with VCRs, cordless telephones, and CD players.

Police held up the band’s bus on the way to the airport and threatened to detain it indefinitely if the stolen merchandise were not returned. All but $3,200 of it then materialized. The police said they did not make any arrests because the thieves could not be positively identified. Shopkeepers said the bandsmen were dressed in matching outfits and all looked alike.

In a Dec. 17 editorial, the Houston Chronicle clucked over the damage the band had done to the overseas image of blacks: “Their actions only serve to confirm in the Japanese mind what they already think of black people — that they are a troublesome lot of inferiors given to anti-social behavior.” Indeed, as one young Japanese woman told reporters, “I was surprised to hear about the incident, but then I heard it was blacks . . .” The Japanese press also reported disapprovingly that the thieves showed no remorse for what they had done.

Back in Texas, there was more huffing and puffing when an investigation revealed that more than half of the 120 bandsmen who went to Japan were not even TSU students. Nevertheless, one TSU alumna who is an activist in Houston’s Fourth Ward, could not understand what the fuss was about. “No one was hurt; no one was lynched or burned,” pointed out Gladys House; “I just don’t understand why a big issue is made out of this incident.” She blamed the furor on racism. [Houston Chronicle, Dec. 17 through Dec. 21. Best single source, Ken Marantz, Lure of ‘better bargain’ caught TSU band, Houston Chronicle, Dec. 20, 1992, p. 1C.]

Progress in Baltimore

AR has long urged obligatory use of Norplant, the recently-approved implantable contraceptive, for welfare recipients. It has also urged that Norplant be made widely available at inner-city high schools. The city of Baltimore is making encouraging moves in that direction. In January it offered free implants to students at a special high school for students who are pregnant or who have already had children. The plan is to extend the program to other schools where there are many pregnancies.

For the last two years, other kinds of contraceptives have been available free to all Baltimore high school students and to some junior high school students. However, many girls forgot or didn’t bother to use contraceptives and got pregnant anyway. [Tamar Lewin, Baltimore school clinics to offer birth control by surgical implant, NYT, 12/4/92, p. A1.] Once Norplant is inserted under the skin, a woman is sterile for up to five years or until the implant is removed.

Now that free, absolutely reliable contraception is available to poor blacks, it will be revealing to see how many still have babies and go on welfare. If many still go on welfare, there will be more calls either for the elimination of welfare or for obligatory use of Norplant.

Census Report

In December, the U.S. Census Bureau revised its population predictions for the next century. Americans are having babies at a higher rate than expected, and more immigrants are pouring in. Just three years ago, the Bureau thought the U.S. population would take 41 years to gain another 50 million. Now, they figure it will take only 17 years, and we will be at the 300 million mark by the year 2010. Since only 10 percent of immigrants are white, and since whites have the lowest fertility rate of all races, the Census Bureau calmly predicts whites will be a minority in a little over 50 years.

Something else that lowers the percentage of whites is the fact that most non-whites live longer than whites. Asians have a life expectancy of 83 years. American Indians and Hispanics, who are essentially the same race, live to be 78. The white life expectancy is 76 and that of blacks is 70. [Ramon McLeod, U.S. Population in 2050 will be half minorities, Dec. 4, 1992, p. 1.] For years, the difference in black and white life expectancy has been attributed to “racism.” The fact that Asians and Hispanics outlive whites doesn’t fit well with the “racism” theory, and is scarcely ever talked about.