A guest on the talk show I was listening to the other night suggested that whites are afraid of minorities because they are encroaching on our territory. As America’s population of Latinos, African Americans, and other minorities grows, the percentage of whites is shrinking and we don’t like that, or so the argument goes. How else can the resistance to more spending on jobs and economic growth be explained?
Why are politicians profiling whites?
You don’t have to be a member of a minority to be profiled. Profiling doesn’t have to involve police harassment and there are all sorts of ways to go about it. Politicians who have run out of tax dollars and believable excuses to spend them are profiling whites as fearful and racist. With the failure of Obama job creation policy staring them in the face and the fallout from the Zimmerman trial providing a media-worthy opportunity, what better excuse for the failure of minorities to prosper than suggesting that America is holding “our people” back, as suggested by this congresswoman?
Let’s set Congress on course to address the underlying causes behind the crisis that Trayvon’s death symbolizes. Let’s take action to stop racial profiling and give our people a chance to succeed.¹
Stump speeches aside, the Obama administration has not done much to advance blacks and Latinos, the two minorities with numbers sufficient to make them useful political pawns. We have heard a lot of profiling rhetoric explaining why these groups are not succeeding like whites, including the stubborn refusal of Republicans to force wealthy Americans to part with enough of their incomes to pay the way for others to rise to the middle class.
It’s not about us and them. It’s government against all of us.
Our divisive political climate has led to all manner of speculation about the reasons behind the failure of different groups to prosper. The debate over immigration reform and the politicizing of the Trayvon Martin incident haven’t helped and have put discrimination and profiling front and center. Chicago Democrat Luis Gutierrez went so far as to suggest that the police can glean last names before they make a traffic stop:
Experience has shown us that police are highly unlikely to stop an individual with the last name of Kennedy or Roberts on suspicion of not being a legal U.S. citizen, but if you are a Gutierrez or Martinez, watch out.²
So who is profiling whom? Instead of making clever allusions to skin color, politicians should have the courage to say what they mean. Illinois Congressman Mike Quigley cited legislators’ “responsibility to root out discrimination”³ when he talked about the fear of non-citizens. He came closer to the truth than he probably realized:
They had to be taught to fear the Dreamers who are American in all but citizenship or their parents who risked their lives to make a better life for their children. You’ve got to be carefully taught.4
If we are afraid of DREAMers the reason is that we don’t want to pay their way or their parents’ way. Resistance to immigration reform is an economic argument, not a racial argument, and when it comes to economic profiling Democrats do it best (see: Racism is Great for Government).
Desperation means economic profiling.
Whites don’t fear becoming a minority. Responsible Americans object to the government making false promises of opportunity to be funded by redistributing income. The only way to get support for this kind of spending without casting blame on communities or Democrats is using race as an excuse:
It is time that we recognize that race is a factor in these growing economic inequalities and we can no longer afford to sweep this issue under the rug. We must put targeted policies in place that will invest in Black and Latino communities; that is the only way that we will ever close the ever-widening gap.5
With Congress almost universally despised, politicians have few options but to court minorities by telling them they are losing to the wealth and power coveted by the majority. How do politicians reconcile their need for money with the denigration of the dominant holders of wealth in our society, many of whom are white? They can’t, but changing the tax code will allow them to seize the funding they want by force.