Saturday, January 19, 2008


Ward Connerly's Solution

Comic strips in the daily newspapers sometimes unwittingly pose comments on political developments. An example struck me today. On the front page of the Los Angeles Times is a story about Ward Connerly's crusade to eliminate all forms of affirmative action by States. An initiative to this end was enacted a few years ago here in California. This year initiatives to ban any action by governments to remedy past discrimination based on race will be on the ballot in several States. Opponents of these measures concede that defeating them will be difficult or impossible.

At the same time, in the Comics section of the newspapter, the character Danae in the strip Non Sequitur, has found her own way of dealing with problems. He solution is to surround herself with a "Shut Up Zone." With this zone in effect she no longer has to be concerned about her father criticizing her for a bad report card, for not cleaning up her room, etc. The problems simply go away if people are not allowed to talk about them.

Ward Connerly believes that the problems of racial prejudice and discrimination will simply disappear if we stop talking about doing something to remedy them. His initiatives would prevent governments from gathering data relating to current practices of racial prejudice and discrimination. There would be no available information; therefore, nothing to talk about. We must simply shut up.

The American Public does not know how pervasive past measures that discriminated against blacks were. For example, when Social Security was enacted in 1936 Southern members of Congress insisted that the plan should not include agricultural workers. In the South, most negroes were agricultural workers and they had to be kept in their place.

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