The Press-Dispatch

May 15, 2019

The Press-Dispatch

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C-8 Wednesday, May 15, 2019 The Press-Dispatch OPINION Submit Letters to the Editor: Letters must be signed and received by noon on Mondays. Email: or bring in a hard copy: 820 E. Poplar Street, Petersburg Violence in the news My Point of View by Dr. H. K. Fenol, Jr., M.D. The past years have been a se- ries of upsetting times for all of us, who, almost daily, weekly or monthly hear about school shoot- ings, shootings of law enforcement officers, shootings in churches, synagogues and mosques.Shoot- ings of innocent victims, and on and on and on. My Lord what has become of us? As I listen closely to the news, I begin to wonder, are these hap- penings becoming really frequent because of certain common traits, or is the ability of news reportings have become so quick and so fast that it just feels like violence is on the rise, and for real. When I talk to friends of my age who have experienced life in the US for the past 70 -80 years, there is a common theme they relate. All of them practically agree that dis- cipline during their elementary and high school years were strong- ly enforced, and that teachers and principals were very much respect- ed and feared. Educators were not subjected to threats by parents or In a recent column, Fred Reed, a favorite curmudgeon, excoriat- ed Islam, Judaism, and Christian- ity on their approach to war and social unrest. His critique spotlighted several American politicians who claim a deep faith in Christ, yet embrace conflict, war, separatism, and by extension, death. He took no prisoners, and I am sure some were offended at his re- marks. But he claims no faith-just a bystander of life and a commen- tator on what he sees as a discon- nect between what the teachings of Christ are, verses how they are lived out in the public arena for the world to see. Reed writes from his perspec- tive, "There Are Christians Who Love and Christians Who Hate" [and I abridge]; "These Christians support a war on Yemen in which huge numbers of people are dying of mutilation, cholera, and starva- tion, a war they could stop with a telephone call. They similarly sup- port butchery of A fghans from the air, massive killing in Syria, bomb- ing of Somalis, and torture cham- bers around the world. Such is their Christi- anity. They lack even a shred of human de- cency. But they are Christians." "…Have you ev- er seen a child die of starvation? But may- be you would get more of a kick out of watch- ing one die of cholera caused by your wars. Death by cholera is quicker, but more inter- esting: Puking and defecating un- controllably, crying, crying. The dehydration kills them….Mean- while, you eat prime rib and talk of the sanctity of your faith." I cannot speak for the political class who are entrusted with the levers of government, which in- clude war and police actions. How- ever, to speak [by action] of war as a part of the faith is problematic. Whether God will allow com- partmentalization of faith at the judgement is His call, but I see no teaching of Jesus or His apostles for the compartmen- talization of secular life and faith. All of us need to examine our walk of faith not because Fred Reed wrote a scath- ing attack on Chris- tian politicians, but his observation that Christ was the Prince of Peace, and said, "Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God," and yet He sees men of faith supporting war, death, and destruction. Julia Ward, who wrote the stan- dard "Battle Hymn of the Repub- lic," had a change of heart later in life and embraced peace and re- jected the conflict and message that her song projected. The Apostle Paul wrote to the Church at Corinth, "You are our epistle written in our hearts, Points to Ponder by Rev. Ford Bond Living a good report Continued on page 8 Continued on page 9 Continued on page 9 Minority View by Walter E. Williams Discrimination and disparities, part II Continued on page 9 Continued on page 9 Last week's column discussed Dr. Thomas Sowell's newest book "Discrimination and Disparities," which is an enlarged and revised edition of an earlier version. In this review, I am going to focus on one of his richest chapters ti- tled "Social Visions and Human Consequences." Sowell challeng- es the seemingly invincible falla- cy "that group outcomes in human endeavors would tend to be equal, or at least comparable or random, if there were no biased interven- tions, on the one hand, nor genet- ic deficiencies, on the other." But disparate impact statistics carries the day among academicians, law- yers and courts as evidence of dis- crimination. Sowell gives the example of blacks, who make up close to 70 percent of NFL and AFL players in professional football. Blacks are greatly overrepresented among star players but almost nonexis- tent among field goal kickers and punters. Probably the only rea- son why lawsuits are not brought against team owners is that the same people hire running backs and field goal kickers. One won- ders whether anyone has consid- ered the possibility that profes- sional black players do not want to be punters and field goal kickers? Different social classes raise their chil- dren differently. Stud- ies have shown that children whose par- ents are profession- al heard more words per hour than chil- dren whose families are on welfare. Stud- ies show that professional parents used "more words and more dif- ferent words ... more multiclause sentences, more past and future verb tenses. ... The ratio of affir- mative words to negative words was six to one with parents who had professional occupation." By contrast, families on welfare used discouraging words more than two to one: words such as "Don't," "Stop," "Quit," and "Shut up." Sow- ell sarcastically asks are we to be- lieve that children raised in such different ways, many years before they reach an employer, a college admissions office or crime scene are the same in capabilities, orien- tation and limitations? Social justice warriors ignore many differences that have little or nothing to do with discrimination but have an enormous impact on outcomes. Age is one of those factors. Median age differences between groups, sometimes of a decade or two will have an enormous impact on observed group outcomes. The median age for American Jews is slightly over 50 years old and that of Latinos is 28. Just on median age alone, would one be surprised at signif- icant group income disparity and other differences related to age? Sowell says that a single in- conspicuous difference in cir- cumstance can make a huge his- torical difference in human out- comes. During the 1840s, Ireland experienced a potato famine. Po- tatoes were the principle food of the Irish. That famine led to the deaths of a million people and caused 2 million to flee. The same variety of potato that was grown Continued on page 9 Strong economy proves Democrats wrong Heritage Viewpoint by Edwin J. Feulner Pursuit of the Cure by Star Parker The Suicidal Equality Act of 2019 Lucid Moments By Bart Stinson Constitutional crisis The House Judiciary Committee has voted out the Equality Act of 2019. It now heads for a vote on the House floor with 240 co-sponsors, which means its passage is virtu- ally certain. The legislation amends all major civil rights law, including the 1964 Civil Rights Act, to include "sexu- al orientation" and "gender identi- ty" along with race, sex and reli- gion as classes that are protected from discrimination. There is so much wrong here it is hard to know where to start. My dictionary defines psycho- sis as "a severe mental disorder in which thought and emotions are so impaired that contact is lost with external reality." We now have a majority of mem- bers of Congress who are prepared to pass into law that the sex indi- viduals are born with — their chro- mosomal and physical reality — will take a back seat to how those individuals choose to define their own sexual identity. Henceforth, we'll be done with the idea that there is some objective reality in- dependent of what of any particu- lar individual decides it is. I once complained that our soci- ety was denying morality — right and wrong. Now we're beyond this. We're denying reality in its entire- ty. Please, read again the definition of psychosis. We're simply going crazy. My impulse is to turn to heav- en and pray to our God to save us. But even the reality of our God, to whom the signers of the Dec- laration of Independence in 1776 turned for "protection," and to whom they pledged "our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Hon- or," is widely being brought into question. The situation is dangerous. Hopefully, this disaster will be stopped. First, let's appreciate that this is oppression dressed up in language of freedom and justice. Religious freedom goes out the window if this bill becomes law. It explicitly defines itself as overriding the Religious Free- We are in a season of Constitu- tional crises, according to Demo- cratic leadership. At first, it was about Russian collusion Special Counsel Robert Mueller's firing by the president, expected any day. That never hap- pened, of course. Sen. Chuck Schumer referred to him as "Director Mueller" be- cause he used to be director of the FBI. Part of our Constitutional system is that we, the people, can replace public officials and change public policy first through elec- tions, and then by the authority of newly elected officials to make promised changes. Schumer and fellow Democrats are apparently uncommitted to that Constitutional plan. The prestige and authority of a "deep state" of permanent bureaucrats has come to rival or surpass that of officials whose election disap- points the Democratic elites. About a year ago, Schumer sounded the alarm again when he feared the president might fire one of his Deputy Attorneys General who had undermined him. "I'd like to make something crystal clear to the president," Schumer said. "Mr. President, any attempt to remove Rod Rosenstein will create the exact same Consti- tutional crisis as if you fired Spe- cial Counsel Mueller." Then when the president re- placed Attorney General Jeff Ses- sions with an interim appointee in November, Sen. Schumer smelled Constitutional crisis again. "If [the interim Attorney General] stays there, he will create a Constitu- tional crisis by inhibiting Mueller or firing Mueller," Schumer said. He demanded that Trump's new appointee recuse himself from su- pervising Mueller's investigation. Unless he did so, Schumer threat- ened a government shutdown. Now the Mueller investigation has run its course, but the Demo- crats' season of Constitutional cri- sis is just getting warmed up. This is necessary because the Demo- crats need to lay a foundation for impeachment, now that the presi- dent is clear of the threat of crim- inal prosecution. House Democrats have issued a subpoena for the full Mueller report without any redactions. Nearly all of them are lawyers, and therefore well aware that it would be a violation of the Feder- al Rules of Criminal Procedure to disclose the portions of the Muel- ler report that quote Grand Jury proceedings, and that whoever vi- olates Grand Jury secrecy is sub- ject to prosecution. It's arguable that Attorney Gen- eral Barr should request a judge's permission to break Grand Jury secrecy in this instance, but it's hardly a Constitutional crisis if he doesn't. The Rule is there for a reason. You should be able to give confidential truthful answers to a prosecutor's questions in Grand Jury without entrusting your fate to Oscar Goodman or Ilhan Abdul- lahi Omar. I do want robust Congressional oversight of the executive branch. That, too, is a very important part of the Constitutional plan. The De- partment of Justice has offered to provide 12 leaders in both cham- bers of Congress, including Judi- ciary Committee Chairman Jerr- old Nadler, access to a less-redact- ed version of the Mueller report to accommodate negotiations for a release that would comply with the criminal procedure rules. But but none of the six Demo- crats have taken the Justice De- partment up on its offer to come and have a look at the document they claim is indispensable to their Constitutional role. Instead, the House Democrats voted Barr in Contempt of Congress. Trump, ever the tough negotiator, retali- ated by asserting Executive Priv- ilege. Predictably, Nadler pronounced America is "now in a Constitution- al crisis." He was oblivious of any such peril in 2012, when Attorney General and Obama confidante Eric Holder refused to comply with a Congressional subpoena. The Obama Justice Department argued then it was under no ob- ligation to comply with any Con- "We are very probably looking at a global recession, with no end in sight." That was New York Times col- umnist Paul Krugman, making a prediction on Election Night in 2016 about what we could expect under President Trump. Month after month, however, Mr. Krugman's crystal ball has proven untrustworthy. But surely vindication would come sooner or later, right? A fter all, Mr. Krugman's not just any columnist. He's a Distin- guished Professor at the City Uni- versity of New York Graduate Cen- ter. He won the 2008 Nobel Memo- rial Prize in Economic Sciences. And he wasn't alone in predict- ing gloom and doom under Mr. Trump. Many other liberal econo- mists foresaw catastrophe on the horizon. Fast forward to the latest month- ly employment numbers, though, and you find reality simply refus- es to play along with their hopes, er, prognosis. Again, we got some stellar fig- ures from the Bureau of Labor Sta- tistics. In April, the economy cre- ated some 263,000 jobs, even bet- ter than the already impressive 213,000 jobs per month that has been created on average over the last year. We're now up to 103 straight months of job creation. The unemployment rate is at 3.6 percent. That's the lowest it's been in almost 50 years. You'd have to go back to the days of the first moon landing to get an employment rate this good. It's 3.1 percent for adult women — the lowest since 1953 — and 4.1 percent for Hispanics, which is the lowest it's ever been. Wages, meanwhile, continue to grow, especially for those on the lower end of the economic scale. "The recent wage gains have been largest for those who need it most," writes tax expert Adam Michel. "For the last six months, wage growth for production and non-su- pervisory workers outpaced the av- erage for the entire economy." The continued good news has left a number of economic watch- ers more than a bit confounded. "The la- bor market the United States is experiencing right now wasn't sup- posed to be possible," writes Neil Irwin in The New York Times. If the conventional wisdom proved cor- rect, for example, we'd been experienc- ing some serious inflation right now. Three years ago, the Federal Reserve was predicting 4.8 percent unemployment in 2019, with 2 per- cent inflation. Instead, of course, the jobless figure is a full 1.2 per- centage points lower, and infla- tion is only 1.6 percent over the last year. Some liberals insist that Mr. Trump doesn't deserve the credit — that what we're seeing is simply a continuation of good economic news that began before Mr. Trump took office. True, the job market had been

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