The Press-Dispatch

June 9, 2021

The Press-Dispatch

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 18 of 25

B-6 Wednesday, June 9, 2021 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 Destroying Black families with federal dollars If there is one reason why problems associated with race in America per- sist, it is because we pretend to ad- dress problems caused by one sin by exchanging them with other sins. President Biden has just issued a proclamation recognizing 100 years since the race massacre that occurred in the Greenwood District in Tulsa, Ok- la., in 1921. Greenwood was a wealthy Black neighborhood, a center of Black busi- ness, known as Black Wall Street, that was ravaged in two days of rioting by white racists. It resulted in the death of hundreds and the loss of property of thousands. It is indeed another tragic and pain- ful memory of race relations in our na- tion's history. The proclamation issued by Presi- dent Biden states, "The Federal Gov- ernment must reckon with and ac- knowledge the role that it has played in stripping wealth and opportunity from black communities." I totally agree. What offends me is that Biden's administration enthusias- tically continues federal policies that damage Black communities, while it pretends it is addressing the problems. As a starter, let us consider that at the same time the president issued this proclamation, he sent an unprecedent- ed $ 6 trillion federal budget to Con- gress that, for the first time ever, omits the longstanding Hyde Amendment. The Hyde Amendment, passed in 1976 and named for its sponsor, Illi- nois Rep. Henry Hyde, prohibits use of federal funds to pay for abortion, ex- cept in cases of rape or incest or when the mother's life is in danger. Every federal budget since the Hyde Amendment was passed has included a rider with this provision — except this year's, thanks to President Biden and his party. So, while Biden issued one procla- mation recalling the tragedy of a mas- sacre of Black Americans, he now wants new federal policy that would use federal funds to subsidize anoth- er massacre. Abortion policy in our nation amounts to nothing short of a massa- cre of and tragedy for Black Ameri- cans, born and unborn. According to National Right to Life, 62.5 million unborn children have been destroyed in the womb since Roe v. Wade legalized abortion on demand in 1973. Per the most recent data from the Centers for Disease Control and Pre- vention, about one-third of all abortions are done on Black babies. Given this, we can estimate that since 1973, some 21 million Black babies have been de- stroyed in the womb. Despite the words in the president's new proclamation indicting the feder- al government in causing damage in Black communities, this is exactly what he wants now: to bring the fed- eral government in to fund the abor- tion massacre. But the damage done by abortion to Black Americans goes beyond this massacre of unborn Black children. It has tangible, damaging effects on the well-being of the Black family. Why, after all these years, do pover- ty rates persist so much higher, on av- erage, in Black communities compared with national averages? Data shows a compelling correla- tion between family structure and in- cidence of poverty. Per the Census Bureau's "Income and Poverty in the United States: 2019" report and per Statista, the incidence of living under poverty is more than four times higher for Black families headed by a single woman than for Black fam- ilies headed by a married couple. And 41 percent of Black families are head- ed by a single woman. Per data from Pew Research Center, in 1970, three years before the Roe v. Wade decision, around 10 percent of Black adults over 25 had never been married. By 2012, this had more than tripled, to 36 percent. Abortion undermines the values of the traditional family. And traditional family values provide the offramp from the cycle of poverty. The persistence of problems in Black communities stems from feder- al policies that pretend to fight the sin of racism with the sins of the destruc- tion of life and family. Roundabouts are better I hate waiting at traffic lights. There's a solution: traffic circles, or roundabouts. Traffic circles terrified me when I first confronted them in Europe. A movie, National Lampoon's Europe- an Vacation, captured my experience when it portrayed Chevy Chase driv- ing in London, unable to exit a rota- ry all day. Besides being hard to navigate, I al- so assumed roundabouts cause prob- lems, but a Freakanomics podcast woke me to their advantages. Roundabouts are a reason Britain's rate of traffic deaths is less than half of the U.S.'s. We've converted almost all of our traffic lights to roundabouts because we save lives, says the mayor of Carm- el, Ind., Jim Brainard. His little town now has 133 roundabouts. A University of Wisconsin-Madison study confirmed that roundabouts save lives. Roundabouts increased crashes a bit, but deaths and injuries dropped by 38 percent. It's because of the angle of the cars, says Brainard. Instead of a T-bone, you got a sideswipe. Roundabouts also slow cars down a little, giving drivers more time to react. "That makes it seem like it'll take longer for cars to get through intersec- tions," I say to Brainard. "It really doesn't," he responds. "A roundabout moves 50 percent more traffic than a traffic light." More than a four-way stop sign in- tersection, too, according to a test ran by the T V show Mythbusters. Roundabouts are also better for the environment. "You never come to a complete stop," Brainard points out. "Tremendous amounts of fuel are saved." Indianapolis realtor Jason Compton says roundabouts even increase the Paul Ehrlich wrote one of the most famous and bestselling books of the 20th century. It was called "The Pop- ulation Bomb." It was 300 pages of doom and gloom. The planet was be- ing destroyed because human beings were reproducing like Norwegian field mice. It was a Darwinian night- mare leading the species inexorably back to a Neanderthal subsistence lev- el existence. We learned this from the book's memorable, often-quoted and apoca- lyptic first sentence: "The battle to feed all of humanity is over. In the 1970's and 1980's, hun- dreds of millions of people will starve to death in spite of any crash programs embarked upon now." He predicted that highly populated countries such as India could not be saved from the extinction. Overpopulation was to the 1960s, '70s and '80s what climate change is today. Ehrlich became an overnight media darling, appearing six times on "The Johnny Carson Show," spreading his message of ecological gloom to mil- lions of people. This was considered the irrefutable science of the day, and it gave birth to the modern "green move- ment." Only a few academics, such as my mentor Julian Si- mon, exposed the predictions as hog- wash. Simon and oth- ers were dismissed as what would be de- scribed today as "sci- ence deniers." So, imagine my surprise when I read this front-page head- line from the Sunday, May 23, New York Times: "World Is Facing First Long Slide in Its Popula- tion: Fertility Rates Plunge." The story describes that even in some of the once most overcrowded nations, "Countries are confronting population stagnation and a fertility bust." People are having so few chil- dren now that "maternity wards are ... shutting down" across the planet. The doomsayers' sheepish response is not an apology or admission of academic fraud. Rather, they say, "Thank God we warned the world about overpop- ulation." But none of this happened because of false alarms. Fertility rates predict- ably fell because the world got richer, and the global movement toward free market capitalism led to high- er family incomes and more ed- ucation and career opportuni- ties for women, which brought down birth rates. Mexico's birth rate fell from five children per married couple in the '70s to just over two today. No one likes to mention the ghastly policies implemented around the world to control population. The United Nations Population Fund (now called Family Planning) championed forced steril- izations, mandatory abortions, Chi- na's gruesome one-child policy and other coercive measures to reduce birth rates. Ironically, the same aca- demics and government officials who today champion "a woman's right to choose" supported imposing brutal controls on the rights of parents to choose their own family size. Even in America, women in recent decades are often stigmatized for having more than three children, and parents with large families are disparaged for not know- ing about birth control. When President Joe Biden an- nounced a plan in mid-February to "tackle gun violence," he said he would direct the Justice Department to issue new regulations for so-called ghost guns. The Justice Department last week finally made public what those new rules would be, setting off a flood of commentary on a technical and oft-misunderstood topic. So what are ghost guns? Why does it seem like everyone sudden- ly is talking about them? What ef- fect would the new rules have on gun owners? And, most importantly, are these changes something Biden can do without congressional action? WHAT ARE 'GHOST GUNS?' The term "ghost gun" refers to a firearm that isn't marked with an in- dividualized serial number, either because that number has been oblit- erated illegally or because the fire- arm is exempt from federal laws that generally require those markings. Law enforcement officers often use serial numbers to track guns as- sociated with crimes back to their point of purchase or last known law- ful owner. Firearms without serial numbers are ghost guns in the sense that there are no official records of their existence. Most commonly, however, the term is used to mean a specific type of un- marked gun—those made by pri- vate individuals for personal use, of- ten using a variety of prefabricated or partially unfinished firearm parts. In other words, most ghost guns are just homemade firearms. LAWS ON HOMEMADE GUNS It's impossible to understand the controversy over unmarked home- made firearms without first under- standing the way federal gun law currently works. Federal law doesn't regulate the manufacture and sale of every fire- arm part. It regulates "firearms," defined as "a weapon which will or is designed to or may be readily converted to expel a projectile by the action of an explosive," including the weapon's "frame or receiver." What is a firearm "frame or receiver," and why is it so important that Congress de- cided to regulate it just as it would a completed firearm? Congress didn't define "frame or receiver" in any statute, but the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives long ago created rules defining the frame or receiver as "the part of a firearm which provides housing for the hammer, bolt or breechblock and firing mechanism, and which is usu- ally threaded at its forward portion to receive the barrel." In layman's terms, a gun's frame or receiver is a hunk of shaped and drilled-out metal that ultimately will house the parts that make the gun fire when it's all put together. Race for the Cure By Star Parker Give Me a Break John Stossel Points to Ponder By Rev. Curtis Bond Continued on page 7 It's that time of the year when practi- cally every family and individuals plan for a good break, especially now that the pandemic restrictions seem to be fading away. So many are restless, eager to go somewhere and do something. It's a good sign we're seeing the bright light at the end of a long dark tunnel of COVID-19. Looking back to where we were and where we are now, I entertain myself reminiscing about our past and the present vacations. Our family loves going on vaca- tions. It has been a way to build pre- cious memories. When our kids would get together, they start talking about their precious memories. They say, "…Remember when we did this, did that? …Wished we had done that. Remember the thrill we got out of doing this or that? " "Mom and Dad were so courageous to drive long distances in our station wagon. Remember those wagons that had a third seat facing backwards and nobody wanted to volunteer to occupy that area? Oh, do you remember using that rooftop luggage carrier we called 'The Hamburger' so we could get more leg room inside the wagon? " "Remember when cell phones were not yet available and we had to take a chance getting a room in a hotel without being able to do reserva- tions ahead of time? " "Remember those public phones in gas stations we had to use to connect with relatives or friends to warn them we're a few miles away and we're lost? It's be- cause our paper maps were torn up and we could not read them. They were al- so stained with coffee and chocolate and colored drinks." ••• Let's move the clock forward. It is astonishing to see how far we have jumped into the new world of technol- ogy. We now book everything ahead of time using the Apps. We order food, reserve hotel rooms, get maps and GPS directions, get en- tertained on iPads and iPhones while on the road using hot spot Wi-Fi. We use cell phones to view movies, Youtube, con- nect with friends and family, using that precious iPhone. Now we even have gotten so sophisticated we can remotely view what's going on inside our homes and surroundings, we can control thermostats from our phones, close and open ga- rage doors and even get alerts if some- thing unusual happens inside our res- idence. We have devices that record the en- tire trip, and if accidents occur, it will be on record. We can check weather daily and a week ahead, too. I can elaborate but I dare not because it's mind-boggling what's in the future. ••• For those planning longer vacations, remember to do a few things which can My Point of View By H. K. Fenol, Jr., M.D. Vacations Continued on page 7 Continued on page 7 Continued on page 7 Eye on the Economy By Stephen Moore Suddenly, 'the population bomb' is a bust Heritage Viewpoint By Amy Swearer Breaking down Biden's proposed 'ghost gun' rules The Passing of the Torch The "Passing of the Torch" is an extremely meaningful experience. For example, the Olympic flame is lit at Olympia, Greece. This ceremony starts the Olympic torch relay, and it continues from bearer to bearer until it arrives at the location of the Olympic Games and it lights the Olympic caul- dron during the opening ceremony of the Games. Carrying the torch is an honor and humbling responsibility. We give it to highly respected individuals. The torch bearer keeps the flame burning until it is ready for the next recipient. The bearer carefully and methodical- ly passes the torch on to the next per- son who carries it further toward its ul- timate destination. Carrying the Olympic Torch is an honor reserved for few. Yet everyone can be entrusted with something of greater importance than the Olym- pic Torch. To bear the light of Christ is of greater value, honor and conse- quence than any earthly honor. Jesus said that we are the "light of the world," and that believers should "let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven." For many years, Rev. Ford Bond wrote this column. As a Christian writ- er, he wrote about current events as viewed through the lens of a believer in Jesus Christ. It is difficult to write a weekly column that is relevant, posi- tive, enlightening and encouraging to the reader. There is so much negativi- ty published on the Internet, in newspa- pers and magazines, on cable news and broadcast news that any writer could follow suit and add their negativity to the pot. This was not Ford's style. Ford wanted to engage the reader into think- ing about their relationship with Jesus. Simply stated, can the world see Jesus in you? Does your walk with Jesus in- fluence the world, or does the world in- fluence you? Doctors diagnosed Ford with a high- grade glioma just a few months ago. A glioma is a brain tumor. High-grade gli- omas originate from a malignant trans- Continued on page 7 Continued on page 7 'GHOST Court

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

Archives of this issue

view archives of The Press-Dispatch - June 9, 2021