NOTE: The following is protected by federal copyright law and is an excerpt from the book Marxianity written by Brannon Howse and is not to be published online. The footnotes that document the content in this article are found in the book Marxianity or the eBook.
David Platt cites black unemployment as an example of racism, neglecting the possibility that it results from a governmental system gone wrong. In the Platt worldview, it doesn’t appear to be thinkable that people may be unemployed simply because they choose not to get up and go to work. Some of the people he’s talking about, though, are shrewd enough to think, “Hey, I’m better off getting a welfare check than I am working because I can make more money that way.” To the extent that some folks can make more money through a government welfare check than they can by working, we have a problem with government, not racism.
Another reason for unemployment that seems to escape Platt is that some unemployment is the end result of progressive ideals. Black educator and columnist, Walter Williams, puts his finger on the problem in an article from April 8, 2013. Speaking of the loss of many part-time and summer jobs for young people, he explains:
[quote] Such opportunities for early work experiences are all but gone for today’s teens. A major reason is the minimum wage law, which makes hiring low skilled workers a losing economic proposition. In 1950, only 50 percent of jobs were covered by the minimum wage law. That meant the minimum wage didn’t have today’s unemployment effect. Today, nearly 100 percent are covered . . . today’s child labor laws prevent youngsters from working in perfectly safe environments. The minimum wage has destroyed many jobs. That’s why, for example, in contrast with the past, today’s gasoline stations are self-service and theater ushers are nonexistent.
Thomas Sowell, also black, is a columnist, author, and an economist. In “Minimum Wage Madness,” an article at his TownHall website, he outlines what poverty in America looks like compared to life outside America:
[quote] Most Americans living below the government-set poverty line have a washer and/or a dryer as well as a computer. More than 80 percent have air conditioning. More than 80 percent also have both a landline and a cell phone. Nearly all have a television and a refrigerator. Most Americans living below the official poverty line also own a motor vehicle and have more living space than the average European. Not Europeans in poverty, the average European. [end quote]
In America, entrepreneurs—the engine of our economy—get up every day and work, then pay taxes that are redistributed to other individuals through welfare programs that allow “the poor” to live better than most middle-class Europeans. Yet, Platt doesn’t seem to understand this. In truth, his “racist” business owners and managers are not the problem. They’re the solution. They’re not racists. They’re providers of employment for anyone willing to work.
Sowell continues his argument, though, and details the government’s role in creating poverty:
[quote] Why then are they called “poor?” Because government bureaucrats create the official definition of poverty, and they do so in ways that provide a political rationale for the welfare state—and, not incidentally, for the bureaucrat’s own jobs. Most people in the lower income brackets are not an enduring class. Most working people in the bottom 20 percent in income at a given time do not stay there over time. More of them end up in the top 20 percent than remain behind in the bottom 20 percent. There is nothing mysterious about the fact that most people start off in entry level jobs that pay much less than they will earn after they get some work experience. But, when minimum wage levels are set without regard to their initial productivity, young people are disproportionately unemployed—priced out of jobs. [end quote]
In other words, minimum wage laws have stopped business owners from being able to afford untrained, unskilled workers. They can no longer afford to give them entry level jobs by which workers build a skill set and résumé which will allow them to move up the economic ladder as they gain experience. And is this due to the racism of white Christians? Or of white free-market capitalists? Not hardly.
This unemployment results from minimum wage laws promulgated by Democrats who want to keep people enslaved to government. Walter Williams summarizes the sad outcome:
[quote] Unemployed young people lose not only the path they could have earned, but at least equally important, the work experience that would enable them to earn higher rates of pay later on. [end quote]
And Thomas Sowell, in his May 18, 2015 article “Minimum-Wage Laws: Ruinous ‘Compassion,’” offers specific examples of the dysfunction:
[quote] A recent story in a San Francisco newspaper says that some restaurants and grocery stores in Oakland’s Chinatown have closed after the city’s minimum wage was raised. Other small businesses there are not sure they’re going to survive because many depend on a thin profit margin and a high volume of sales. At an angry meeting between local small business owners and the city officials, the local organization that has campaigned for the higher minimum wage was absent. They were probably someplace congratulating themselves on having passed a humane living wage law. The group most affected was also absent—inexperienced and unskilled young people who need a job to get some experience even more than they need the money . . .
You can check this out for yourself. Go to your local library and pick up a copy of the distinguished British magazine, The Economist. Whether it is the current issue or a back issue, doesn’t matter. Spain, Greece and South America will be easy to locate in the table near the back which lists data for the various countries. Just look down the unemployment column for countries with unemployment rates around 25 percent. Spain, Greece and South Africa are always there. Whether or not there is a recession.Why? Because they have a very generous minimum wage law.
While you’re there, you can look up the unemployment rate for Switzerland, which has no minimum wage law at all. Over the years I’ve never seen the unemployment rate in Switzerland reach as high as 4 percent. Back in 2003 The Economist reported, “Switzerland’s unemployment neared a five year high of 3.9 percent in February.” [end quote]
Sowell also reveals the biggest loser in the political game of minimum wages:
[quote] Low income minorities are often hardest hit by the unemployment that follows in the wake of minimum wage laws. The last year when the black unemployment rate was lower than the white unemployment rate was 1930, the last year before there was a federal minimum wage law. The following year, the Davis-Bacon Act of 1931 was passed, requiring minimum wages in the construction industry. This was in response to complaints that construction companies with non-union black construction workers were able to underbid construction companies with unionized white workers (whose unions would not admit blacks). [end quote]
Please don’t miss the unbelievable irony of this. Minimum wage laws were passed in 1931 largely to stop black workers from undermining or underbidding white workers. The minimum-wage strategy was conceived because labor unions that didn’t accept black workers were losing work. If a white worker lost a job and he couldn’t pay his union dues, the union’s revenues decreased, so unions lobbied for minimum wage laws. Success in getting the laws passed kept black entrepreneurs from being able to undercut their white competitors.
So, let’s be crystal clear about this: the very concept of minimum wage laws is racist at its core, not the opposition to these laws. Yet, who generally supports the unions? Democrats. Whether it’s abortion, unions, minimum wage laws, welfare programs, or even slavery itself, the Democratic party has been at the forefront of every conceivable way to enslave black Americans. By using race as a tool for their agenda, the progressive socialist Democrats are the true racists.
Rather than talk about income disparity or low incomes in the black community as examples of racism, David Platt would do well to stop regurgitating the lies of Neo-Marxists and socialists. Recognizing the actual history of the problems doesn’t fit the politically correct agenda he’s pushing, but it would be more honest. He would do more to truly correct the problem. Otherwise, Thomas Sowell’s observation remains:
[quote] The annual unemployment rate for black teenagers has never been less than 20 percent in the past 50 years and has ranged as high as over 50 percent. Incidentally, the black/white gap in unemployment rates for 16-year-olds and 17-year-olds was virtually non-existent back in 1948. But the black teenager unemployment rate has been more than double that for white teenagers for every year since 1971. [end quote]
The ruination of entry level jobs has been especially disastrous for black Americans.
David Platt merely parrots the false narrative. He blames the church for black unemployment, income inequality, baby death rates, crime in black communities, and poor education. Then he not only gives government, the real culprit, a pass, but calls for more government help as the solution! In so doing, Platt is nothing more than a mouthpiece for Neo-Marxists as they infiltrate mainstream evangelicalism. You can add his name to the list of useful idiots.