O Tempora, O Mores! (May, 2005)

American Renaissance, May 2005

Born Victims

On March 8, 9,000 high school students marched in Paris to protest educational reforms announced by the government. The march attracted 700 to 1,000 black and Arab brawlers from the northern suburbs of the city who came to attack young whites. Small bands of thugs circulated through the crowd, beating up victims and stealing their wallets, purses, or mobile phones. All the victims were white, and the thugs attacked women as well as men. Dozens of victims were taken to the hospital. Police were caught flat-footed, and did little to help the victims; they arrested only eight people. The organizers of the demonstration ended it early because of the violence.

When asked why they had beaten the marchers, the attackers openly expressed their hatred of “little French people” and “little whites.” “If you have a face like a good Frenchman,” said one, “you’re a target. And especially if you look like a surfer with long hair.” They beat young whites, they said, because they were cowards and did not know how to fight. They also expressed resentment at whites’ wealth. “The people who were marching are those who want to succeed and who have a lot of stuff.”

The victims said the motive was clearly not just theft: Even when they gave up their cell phones or money immediately, the thugs still beat them up. Some just smashed the cell phones on the pavement and laughed. A group of public figures, along with 1,000 students, released a statement denouncing what they called “anti-white” attacks. [A Paris, les Casseurs ont Trappé et Volé de Nombreux Manifestants, Le Monde (Paris), March 10, 2005.]

When protesters marched again on March 15, unions provided an escort of several hundred. There were no attacks, but there were far fewer demonstrators than a week earlier. Student leaders said many whites were afraid to come out. [Union Escort for Protesting Paris Students, AFP, March. 15, 2005.]

The young men who attacked the protesters used the non-white ghetto slang term bolos to describe their victims. The word means “trendy young white” or “born victim.” The French newspaper Le Monde asked non-white high school students in the area from which the attackers came what the word meant to them. “It’s as though they had, ‘Come steal my stuff,’ written on their faces,” said one student. “Bolos look at the ground because they are afraid, because they are cowardly,” says another. Blondes are particularly likely to be bolos, but even non-whites can be bolos if they assimilate. “A North African can be a bolos if he thinks like a Frenchman,” says a student.

Black and Arab students respect and can even be friends with “whites who don’t take themselves for whites,” that is to say, who mimic the ways of the ghetto. Young non-whites particularly dislike whites who dress trendily, such as those who adopt skater or “Goth” fashions. These people, in the students’ view, are “not normal.” Bolos are weaklings and don’t move around in gangs. One student explained that they are vulnerable because of their small families. Young Arabs and blacks are likely to have older brothers who will avenge attacks. [Manifestations des Lycéens: Le Spectre des Violences Anti-”Blancs,” Le Monde (Paris), March. 15, 2005.]

French non-whites do not see themselves as part of the same nation as whites. Blacks and Arabs have started calling white Frenchmen Gaulois or Gauls, the name of the tribe that lived in France when the Romans conquered it. Some white Frenchmen use the term as well, as in “the Gaulois vote.” Young Muslims born in France, when asked their nationality, answer “Muslim” rather than French. [Olivier Guitta, Mugged by la Réalité, Weekly Standard, April 15, 2005.]

A Mystery

The Lowry Avenue Bridge in Minneapolis over the Mississippi River joins two neighborhoods: Northeast, which is mostly white, and North Minneapolis, which is mostly black. Between May and December last year, the bridge was closed for repairs, and mostly-white Northeast saw a 41 percent drop in crime. Crime at the other end of the bridge rose sharply. A liquor store owner in Northeast said he had noticed the crime drop himself. While the bridge was closed, there was less shoplifting and fewer customers trying to pass bad checks. A tattoo parlor owner in Northeast said the drop in crime was a popular subject of conversation in her shop. Some people even believed the bridge was deliberately kept closed longer than necessary.

Some Minneapolis residents are afraid to draw the obvious conclusion. A Northeast resident said, “Simply because crime is down, you can’t say it’s because the Lowry Avenue Bridge is closed. I think there’s implications for some racial attitudes that we have to be careful about.” A Northeast restaurant manager says it is difficult to know how the bridge affects crime: “I don’t know if the mystery will ever be revealed.” He did, however, concede that the bridge is “an open corridor to a whole different world.” The county commissioner duly declared himself “quite surprised” that many Northeast residents did not want the bridge reopened. [Mike Kaszuba, Was Lowry Bridge a Span to Crime? Star-Tribune (Minneapolis), March 29, 2005.]

Disparate Income

According to data from the US Census Bureau, in 2003, college-educated black women made more money than college-educated white women: $41,100 vs. $37,800. Asian women with bachelor’s degrees had the highest average pay at $43,700, and Hispanic women had the lowest, at $37,600.

Economists and sociologists say the black-white difference is due in part to the tendency of black women to work longer hours, hold more than one job, or return to work sooner after giving birth. But another factor is the premium on college-educated black women, especially in certain fields. “Given the relative scarcity, if you are a woman in the sciences — if you are a black woman — you would be a rare commodity,” says Roderick Harris of the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies.

College-educated men still earn more than college educated-women, with white men earning the most: more than $66,000 per year, compared to $52,000 for Asian men, $49,000 for Hispanics, and $45,000 for blacks. [Disparity Found in Degreed Women’s Earnings, AP, March 28, 2005.]

Canadian Anti-Racism

On March 21, the Canadian government unveiled a five-year, $56-million campaign to “get tough on racism.” The plan grew out of a government survey that found 18 percent of Canadians said they had suffered some form of racial discrimination, coupled with the fact that, thanks to immigration, Canada is becoming increasingly non-white. In 1980, non-whites — ”visible minorities” in Canadian government-speak — were just one percent of Canada’s population. The figure is now 13 percent, and is expected to reach 20 percent by 2017.

Fighting Internet “racism” is part of the effort. There will be a hot line so Canadians can report Internet “hate” sites, and the government will pressure Internet Service Providers to shut down websites it doesn’t like. The government will also define and keep track of hate crimes, meet the “needs” of victims, and “rehabilitate” perpetrators. The authorities will also work closely with employers, unions, immigrants and Canadian “aboriginals” (but apparently not with whites) to root out employment discrimination. There will also be a “Welcoming Communities Initiative,” to “foster a more welcome environment” for immigrants.

Fighting “racism” is one of Justice Minister Irwin Cotler’s top priorities. “We have to send out the message unequivocally,” he says, “as a government and as part of our shared citizenship and shared values, that our Canada is one in which there will be no sanctuary for hate and no refuge for bigotry. We will use all the panoply of remedies to bring that about: legal remedies, intercultural dialogue, promotion of multiculturalism, anti-discrimination law and policy.” [Elizabeth Thompson, Racism Battle Gets $56 million, Gazette (Montreal), March 21, 2005.]

Unwelcome Guest

In early March, Hakeem Hakeem went on a rampage in the suburbs of Melbourne, Australia. First, he beat and raped a woman. Five days later he raped another woman. The next day he raped, robbed, and tried to kill a 60-year-old woman. The next day he forced a man to rape yet another woman before raping her himself and sexually assaulting her with a tree branch. Mr. Hakeem is a 19-year-old immigrant from the Sudan. By the time police got him into court, he had been in Australia for just three weeks. [Accused Serial Rapist in Australia for Just 3 Weeks, Daily Telegraph (Sydney), March 16, 2005.]

State of the Black Union

Every year since 2000, black radio talk show host Tavis Smiley has put on what he calls a “State of the Black Union” conference. This year it was in suburban Atlanta during the weekend of Feb. 26, and attracted such luminaries as Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, Louis Farrakhan, Rep. John Conyers and former US Surgeon General Joycelyn Elders. The theme was black political activism.

Many blacks say the 2004 presidential campaign ignored “their” issues, and Mr. Smiley said black leaders should draw up a “contract with black America” that politicians would have to sign. “The next time you come calling on our vote,” he said of politicians, “you come correct on the contract or you don’t come at all.” The audience of 2,000 whooped with delight. Joseph Lowery, former head of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, preferred a “covenant” to a “contract,” saying, “We’ve got to recapture that spirituality; that’s our strength.” Mr. Smiley agreed, saying, “Black folk have always been the conscience of this country. We are doing our part to help redeem the soul of America.”

Mr. Farrakhan said any contract should be between blacks and their own leaders, in order to present a unified front in the face of white power. “Power concedes nothing without a demand,” he said, “but power won’t even concede to a demand if it comes from a weak constituency that looks like it’s lost its testicular fortitude.”

Predictably, President Bush emerged as the villain. Mr. Farrakhan derided the President for going to war with Iraq, accusing him of believing that “no dark nation should have a weapon of mass destruction.” Rev. Eddie Long had to justify accepting an invitation to the White House: “Just because we went to the house does not mean we had intercourse,” he explained. [Charles Odum, ‘Contract’ Urged for Black Issues, AP, Feb. 27, 2005.]

Black Social Security

President Bush is trying to persuade blacks to support his proposal to privatize Social Security, arguing that they are shortchanged by the present system because they tend to die younger than whites. “African-American men get on average two to four years of retirement benefits, while white Americans get 10 to 12 years of benefits,” says Republican National Committee spokesman Tara Wall.

The GOP’s critics say this appeal won’t work, because blacks rely on Social Security income far more heavily than whites (38 percent — as opposed to 18 percent of whites — have no other retirement income). “It is one of the best deals that poor and working poor can get, and blacks are unfortunately over-represented in those groups,” says black congressman Charles Rangel (D-NY). “If one of the appeals to blacks is that they’re not getting a fair shake because they die earlier, it would seem to me that they would at least address the question of why they die earlier and what we can do about it.” [Edmund L. Andrews, GOP Courts Blacks, Latinos, New York Times, March 20, 2005.]

Sins of the Father

Philadelphia has joined Chicago in forcing firms that do business with the city to report whether they ever made money from slavery. The law, which went into effect in March, says that any company that gets a city contract must file an affidavit within 90 days stating it has checked its records for any evidence of profits from slavery. If there ever were such profits, the company must list the names of the slaves and slave owners. If the business does not file the affidavit or lies in it, it will lose the contract.

“This is a chance to put in place an essential element — corporate disclosure and transparency,” says city council member Blondell Reynolds-Brown, who sponsored the bill. “We will arrive at a new era when corporations are able and willing to face their past and make proper amends, whatever they may be, for any egregious wrongdoings.” [Angela Couloumbis, Past Slave Profits Focus of Council Bill, Philadelphia Inquirer, March 3, 2005, p. B-4.]

Dying Detroit

Detroit was one of the first major American cities to get a black mayor, and has been run by blacks ever since 1973. Some blacks therefore call it the Capital of Black America, but the capital is in bad shape. Its population of 911,000 is half what it was in the 1950s, and the city is expected to lose another 50,000 by 2010. The declining tax base means Detroit faces a three-year budget shortfall of $389 million, and is on the brink of bankruptcy. Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick is trying to stop the red ink by firing 687 city employees, and cutting everyone else’s pay by ten percent. This will not be enough. Decades of featherbedding have left Detroit with 1.4 city workers for each 1,000 residents, well above the one per 1,000 average in other major cities. The mayor plans to save money by shutting down overnight bus service and closing the aquarium. He is also considering closing the zoo, cutting back on public medicine, and turning off some street lighting.

Depopulated Detroit

Schools have been getting the axe. The superintendent fired 372 teachers before Christmas, and plans to close 40 schools this summer. According to projections, the number of schoolchildren will decline to 100,000 by 2008, half the 1999 figure. This would mean closing 110 of 252 schools, and firing more than a quarter of the district’s 21,000 employees.

Businesses have fled, leaving an unemployment rate of 14 percent, nearly double the state average, and almost three times the national average. Detroit squeezes 5.5 times more in taxes out of its residents than the average Michigan city. Part of this is due to a city income tax, which takes the place of all the real-estate tax the city does not collect on block after block of abandoned buildings. As if this were not enough, the city is considering a new head tax of $252 a year on the people it still has.

A generation ago, blacks spoke hopefully of a renaissance. Now the words they use are “cataclysmic,” “dire,” and “grave,” and the vocabulary is not likely to change. “I see no turnaround imminent,” says David Lippman, chief economist at Comerica Bank. “It does gravitate to a downward spiral.” (see “The Late Great City of Detroit,” AR, Aug. 1991, for an analysis of Detroit’s long decline).

Mayor Kilpatrick doesn’t want to be known as the man who finally ran the city onto the rocks. He says he’s been working out with weights to get into “fighting shape” so he can tackle Detroit’s woes. “We’ve been a black eye on the landscape of America for too long. I don’t want that stigma attached to me.” The mayor could start economizing closer to home. Not long ago he stuck the city with a $24,995 bill for a 2-year lease on an SUV for his wife. [Jodi Wilgoren, Shrinking, Detroit Faces Fiscal Nightmare, New York Times, Feb. 2, 2005, p. A12.]

Mexican Fears

Mexican politicians routinely campaign for votes in the United States, and plans are underway to make the US a Mexican voting district for the next presidential election in 2006. That worries Mexican Foreign Relations Secretary Luis Ernesto Derbez — but not because it treats the US as if it were a province of Mexico. In testimony before the Mexican senate, he said American authorities might use Mexican election day to identify and catch illegal immigrants. Mr. Derbez also worries that a massive voter turnout among Mexicans in the US might encourage anti-immigrant sentiment. [Voting by Mexicans Abroad Spurs Concerns, AP, March 20, 2005.]

African Influx

During the 1990s, more African blacks came to the United States than were ever brought here as slaves. African immigrants first began coming in large numbers in the 1970s as refugees from Ethiopia and Somalia. During the 1990s, black African immigration tripled. At more than 600,000, Africans now make up 2 percent of the US population and, along with Caribbean-born blacks, account for 25 percent of black population growth. If illegals are counted, the numbers could be four times higher.

Most of today’s legal African immigrants come from Nigeria and Ghana. Many go to New York City, but others head for Washington, Atlanta, Chicago, Los Angeles, Boston and Houston. Refugees, mainly Somalis, now live in Minnesota, Maine and Oregon.

Daouda Ndiaye is an immigrant from Senegal who won a visa in the diversity lottery in 1994. Mr. Ndiaye first worked in a sporting goods store and is now a translator. Thanks to the family reunification provisions of US immigration law, he has already brought in two of his six children.

Because many African immigrants are the most ambitious and capable of their people, some of their countrymen predict a brain drain that will hurt Africa. Others point out that African immigrants send back more than $1 billion annually to their families. Some Americans fear the economic success of African immigrants (who generally do not blame whites for their problems) will reflect badly on American blacks. “Historically, every immigrant group has jumped over American-born blacks. The final irony would be if African immigrants did, too,” says Eric Foner of Columbia University. [Sam Roberts, More Africans Enter US Than in Days of Slavery, New York Times, Feb. 21, 2005.]

Dutch Deserters

The Dutch used to take pride in their open, anything-goes social liberalism. They welcomed hundreds of thousands of non-white, primarily Muslim refugees and immigrants, gave them welfare, and did not ask them to assimilate. The immigrants — now ten percent of the population — kept to their own customs, which in many ways are antithetical to Dutch liberalism. Last November, a Muslim fanatic murdered prominent filmmaker Theo van Gogh, a critic of radical Islam.

The killing seems to have awoken the Dutch to the threat they face, but instead of fighting, many Dutch are running. “Our website got 13,000 hits in the weeks after the van Gogh killing,” says Frans Buysse, who operates an agency that helps people emigrate. “That’s four times the normal rate.” Immigration consultant Paul Hiltemann says he was inundated with phone calls and e-mail after the murder. “There was big panic,” he says; “a flood of people saying they wanted to leave the country.” Five years ago most of the clients he served were farmers looking for more land. Of those seeking to leave now, he says, “They are successful people . . . urban professionals, managers, physiotherapists, computer specialists.”

Ruud Konings is one who wants out. “When I grew up,” he says, “this place was spontaneous and free, but my kids cannot safely cycle home at night. My son just had his fifth bicycle stolen.” His children are reluctant to go to school because “they’re afraid of being roughed up by the gangs of foreign kids.” His wife believes the Dutch have brought the situation on themselves. “We’ve been too lenient; now it’s difficult to turn the tide.”

Most Dutch deserting their own country have their eyes on Canada, New Zealand, or Australia. [Marlise Simons, More Dutch Plan to Emigrate as Muslim Influx Tips Scales, New York Times, Feb. 27, 2005.]

Thinking the Unthinkable

In Britain, just as in the United States, there is a huge gap in academic achievement between blacks and whites. In 2001, the British government set up a plan to eliminate the gap, and in 2003, it put another £10 million into the effort. Needless to say, the British have nothing to show for their money; the gap still yawns. Again, as in America, the British are prepared to try just about anything in the hope of getting blood from turnips.

Trevor Phillips, the black chairman of Britain’s Commission for Racial Equality, says the time has come for Britain to “embrace some new if unpalatable ideas” — including setting up separate classes for black boys. Mr. Phillips thinks segregation could boost self esteem, give blacks positive role models, and reform a “not cool to be clever” mentality. [Danielle Demetriou, Teach Black Boys Separately, says Phillips, The Independent (London), March 7, 2005.]

Anchor Baby

Sneaking across the US-Mexican border can be hard work, especially if you are pregnant. On Feb. 27, US Border Patrol agents found a pregnant Mexican woman by the road outside of Laredo, Texas. The woman, who was in labor, had been abandoned by smugglers because she could not keep up. Agents arrested her, then delivered her baby — an automatic US citizen — in the back of their vehicle on the way to the hospital. The woman named her daughter Sarai Marisol after the agent who delivered her, Marisol Cantu. Young Sarai — 10 weeks premature — will receive first-world medical care at US taxpayer expense in a Corpus Christi hospital. As the mother of a US citizen, the woman will probably be allowed to stay. [Illegal Alien Gives Birth After Arrest, AP, March 4, 2005.]

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