Jean Chen, Commentary
One day, my 17-year-old daughter showed me a Facebook post that said 74.5 percent of hate crimes between 1992 and 2014 against Asian Americans were from white offenders. The purpose of the post was to ask Asians to fight alongside the Black Lives Matter movement to “improve minority communities.”
I reminded her to check online the percentage of white people in the U.S. population. It was 76.3 percent in 2019 according to Census.gov.
“Look, the percentage of white offenders is less than the percentage of white population, even if the statistics are correct,” I said.
Actually, I have read several media reports talking about the surge of attacks against Asian Americans recently. Some reports blamed President Trump and “white supremacists” for the attacks, without any factual evidence.
I used this as an opportunity to converse with my daughter: “You need to be careful and know how to protect yourself. However, if the purpose of a report is to provoke your resentment towards a specific group of people, be alert. Nowadays, many journalists have lost their professionalism. They push their narratives with lies, or partial truths, or insinuation, or misleading statistics. They exaggerate certain things, while intentionally omitting other things. Remember, there are bad people in all races. There are also people who have hatred because of misunderstandings. As for COVID-19, it was the Chinese Communist Party that spread the virus to the world. The CCP cannot represent us. People all over the world, including Chinese, are victims of its atrocities.”
As we talked, my daughter told me that most of her school friends support the BLM movement, and even Antifa, because they believe that many black Americans are abused and killed by police. They support defunding the police. They think those looters and rioters are “rightfully angry” because of racism and the slavery in their history. My daughter attends a suburban public high school in a deep-blue state.
This is an astonishing revelation. I know some of her friends’ parents. Like me, they are hard-working first-generation Asian immigrants who embrace America’s freedom. They are sad and angry to see their children being brainwashed by the media and the education system.
That was exactly how I felt before. But being angry is never a solution. As time goes by, I realize that, if we don’t try our best to save our children from the communists’ propaganda, who will? The effect so far has been encouraging. I have published two “A Mom’s Research” articles in the Epoch Times. One is about democratic socialism and the other is about global warming. By chatting with my daughter about the contents (she refused to read them), she was satisfied and no longer had issues with those topics. She is also more open with me.
Therefore, here I am again, continuing to research and write. This time, it is about racism. During the process, not only did I find answers to my daughter’s questions, I also figured out who are the real racists. They destroy the black community’s morality and dignity and fill their hearts with poisonous resentment, instead of hope and confidence. They have been crippling the black community, and are trying to do the same to Asian Americans.
Set the Record Straight About Police
I found a fascinating video to clarify the topics about the allegation of police brutality and racism. It is an American Thought Leaders’ interview of Burgess Owens, an NFL star and a congressman from Utah who grew up in the segregated south.
For the sake of providing quick talking points, I combine some of the information from the video and other sources in the following:
In 2019, there were over 10 million arrests in the United States according to the DOJ. Among 54 unarmed civilians who died of officer-involved shootings, 12 were black and 26 were white, according to a Washington Post database. At the same time, 89 law enforcement officers were killed in the line of duty according to the data provided by the FBI.
In his interview, Rep. Owens pointed out that there are bad people in every profession. While tragic deaths like that of George Floyd and others need to be carefully investigated and justice sought in courts, the police force as a whole is made up of those who vow to protect others with their own lives. “We don’t have a police problem. We have a narrative problem. We have a media who loves to put down everything that’s good about our country.”
A study by the Skeptic Research Center showed how severely the public opinion about police has been misled by media hype. When asked to guess “how many unarmed black men were killed by police in 2019,” 38 percent of the respondents overall answered “about 100,” and 29 percent answered “about 1,000” or more. Among those with liberal or very liberal political views, 46 percent estimated “about 1,000” or more. As mentioned above, the recorded death number for unarmed black men and women was 12.
A 2017 study by Harvard researcher Roland G. Fryer, Jr., an African American economist specializing in discrimination and inequality studies, found no racial differences related to officer-involved shootings. As for non-lethal police use of force, here is what Dr. Fryer said: “If one assumes police simply stop whomever they want for no particular reason, there seem to be large racial differences. If one assumes they are trying to prevent violent crimes, then evidence for bias is exceedingly small.”
After the death of George Floyd in May 2020, BLM’s rhetoric of “defund the police” gained momentum. At least 13 U.S. cities have cut police funds to different extents. These cities all experienced crime surges in 2020. Seattle observed the highest homicide number in 26 years. Chicago’s murders went up by 50 percent. The black community suffered the most. A Gallup poll released in August 2020 showed that 81 percent of black adults want the same or more police presence in their communities.
Legacy of Slavery?
“Some things are believed because they are demonstrably true, but many other things are believed simply because they have been asserted repeatedly.” —Thomas Sowell
Some people think the current disadvantaged situation of the black community is a legacy of slavery. But what I learned from Burgess Owens and Dr. Thomas Sowell is different.
Dr. Thomas Sowell is a famous economist and a senior fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution. He was born in North Carolina in 1930, and moved to Harlem, New York, when he was nine. Growing up in poverty, he was a Marxist in his youth. However, his intern experience in the federal government in 1960 changed his worldview.
Here is what Dr. Sowell said about slavery:
“Today, the moral horror of slavery is so widely condemned that it is hard to realize that there were thousands of years when slavery was practiced around the world by people of virtually every race. Even the leading moral and religious thinkers in different societies accepted slavery as just a fact of life.”
“What was special about America was not that it had slavery, which existed all over the world, but that Americans were among the very few peoples who began to question the morality of holding human beings in bondage. That was not yet a majority view among Americans in the 18th century, but it was not even a serious minority view in non-Western societies at that time.
“Then how did slavery end? We know how it ended in the United States—at the cost of one life lost in the Civil War for every six slaves freed. But that is not how it ended elsewhere.”
Is slavery the reason for the high crime rates and broken families in the black community? Rep. Owens provided his own experience on this issue:
“I grew up in a community that was truly living the American dream and the most competitive minority race in our country, the 40’s, 50’s, and 60’s, and this is something you were not taught. It is not taught on purpose…. [In the] 40’s, 50’s, and 60’s, the black community led our country in the growth of the middle class [and] led our country in men matriculated from college. Men committed to marriage; over 70% of men committed to the mothers of their children. Those who didn’t were looked at as lowlives. They were not respected…. Over 40% of black Americans were entrepreneurs, business owners within the community, a segregated community that did not have any white people, any other folks at all.”
“You have an upbringing in which you think, ‘I can do anything. I can literally do anything I want to, because I see it in front of me. I understand that there are those who don’t want me to succeed, but guess what? We’re going to work hard, and we’re going to ride harder, we’re going to study harder, we’re going to do whatever we have to do to show them wrong. We’re not going to demand respect. We’re going to command respect.’ That was the community I grew up in.”
Dr. Sowell also pointed out that teenage pregnancy, husband desertion, and unemployment were much lower before the 1960s than they are now. He said in a documentary: “As late as 1930, blacks had lower unemployment rates than whites.… All these things that we complain about and attribute to the era of slavery, those things should have been worse in the past than in the present, but in fact, they’re worse in the present than in the past. And I think if you want to look for a turning point, it would be since the 1960s…. You began to have not only the welfare state, you began to have the mind-set that goes with the welfare state so that there was no stigma any longer attached, for example, to being on relief or welfare.”
Turning Point for the Black Community
The 1960s was the turning point for the black community. It was a time when American morality was hijacked by communism. Author Cleon Skousen wrote in his book The Naked Capitalist: “As early as 1960, the U.S. Communist leader, Gus Hall, had announced that the Party was going to alienate and radicalize the American Youth. Within a short time, Castro beards, hippy clothes, filthy speech, Communist salutes, Communist songs, Communist peace symbols, drugs, pornography, nihilism, and riots became the order of the day.”
Traditional marriage became one of the first casualties of the cultural war. The black community was affected more severely. Deserting families was no longer a shame, but considered cool. Feminism, “sexual liberation,” and the promotion of abortion have also damaged families.
The welfare state policies that began in the mid-1960s further damaged marriage in addition to penalizing good work ethic or willingness to work. According to Robert Rector, Senior Research Fellow at The Heritage Foundation, welfare programs made single parenthood financially possible, and punished low-income married parents. “When a low-income mother and father marry, they will generally experience a sharp drop in benefits, and their joint income will fall.”
As morality degenerated in the 1960s, everything took a downturn. And it was not just limited to the United States. Dr. Sowell wrote in his book “Discrimination and Disparities”:
“The widespread changes wrought in human behavior during the triumphant era of the welfare state and its accompanying social vision have included fear-filled people in a French public housing project where cars are “burned for fun”; fear-filled schools in Britain and America, where both children and their teachers have been targets of young thugs allowed to run amok; single mothers on welfare in New Zealand saying, ‘If I don’t have another baby, I’m going to have to go back to work;’ and a woman in an American public housing project responding to an account of a brutal gang-rape of a woman in her own apartment with: ‘So a lady was raped. Big deal. There’s too much other crime happening here.’ We have already noted an international and centuries-long decline in homicides that suddenly reversed in the 1960s and shot up again, to levels not seen since the previous century.”
Before moving on, I wish to remind readers again: the situation of the black American community 60 years ago was very different from the situation now. Dr. Sowell quoted a 2009 New York Times article talking about the public housing projects in New York: “These were not the projects of idle, stinky elevators, of gang-controlled stairwells where drug deals go down. In the 1940s, ‘50s, and ‘60s, when most of the city’s public housing was built, a sense of pride and community permeated well-kept corridors, apartments and grounds.”
Who Are the REAL Racists?
Morality decaying and leftist policies are probably the biggest reasons for the downturn of the black community. But what is behind the bad policies? Dr. Sowell pointed out that it was a prevailing “social vision”:
“Much of the social retrogression that took place on both sides of the Atlantic is traceable to the central tenet of the prevailing social vision, that unequal outcomes are due to adverse treatment of the less fortunate. This preconception became a fount of grievance-driven attitudes, emotions and actions—including what has been aptly called ‘decivilizing’ behavior in many contexts.”
“There is no question that human biases have contributed to unfair prospects. But it is a complete non sequitur to say that human biases are the sole, or even primary, causes of unequal prospects, without hard evidence to support that conclusion.”
“No two leaves are alike.” We were all born with different backgrounds. We all have different resources, face different challenges, and have some prejudice in our minds. But we all can work hard and treat others nicely to achieve success, conquer others’ prejudices, and earn their respect. Those who deprived us of dignity, humility, and confidence, but fill our hearts with bitterness and resentments, and those who told us to blame others and to rely on the government or looting to get our “fair share,” are the real racists. They are the ones who insult us and paralyze our races.
Dr. Sowell wrote, “… history is too often taught today, under the banner of ‘social justice,’ and using the same toxic mixture of heady rhetoric and heedless visions that led to such monumental tragedies in the totalitarian dictatorships of the twentieth century.”
I believe he is referring to communism. Communist ideology has infiltrated our education system, media, and politics. It is distorting our history, bending objective standards, and poisoning our minds through all these channels.
Just like Rep. Owens said, “We have people out there [with] an evil ideology. I have to make this point very clearly when I talk about Marxist, socialist, communist, I’m not talking about a person. I’m talking about ideology. People change. Ideologies do not. So we have here a movement that’s been laying in wait, waiting for an opportunity to pounce on American people.”
What Is Behind the Black Lives Matter and Antifa Movements?
Black Lives Matter is a Marxist movement. Its founders have publicly stated that they are trained Marxists. They close every meeting and every action with a Communist Manifesto slogan: “We have nothing to lose but our chains.” They are financially sponsored by the Chinese Progressive Association of San Francisco, a storefront of the Chinese Communist Party on the west coast (You can also read about them here.) They follow the model of the Black Panther Party, a radical Marxist group in the 1960s that worshipped Chairman Mao. They care nothing when black businesses are looted, or when more and more black people are killed by criminals. They only care about taking advantage of tragedies, like the death of George Floyd, to incite hatred.
The Antifa (Anti-fascist) movement originated in Germany in the 1930s. It was started by members of the Communist Party of Germany (KPD), and described itself as a “red united front under the leadership of the only anti-fascist party, the KPD.” The contemporary Antifa movement is formed mainly by communists, socialists, and anarchists. The “fascism” it referred to actually means longstanding American traditions and values. Communist symbols are often seen in its protests. Their only interest is to burn all traditional values and social structures to ashes.
Let’s spread the word and start conversations with calmness and evidence. It took communism over 100 years to infiltrate our country. With strong determination, we will save our young people, one heart a time.
Jean Chen is originally from China, and writes under a pen name in order to protect her family in China.
Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.