SACKS: Conservatives Get It Wrong On Black Poverty And The Public School System — Here’s Why

In his recent Daily Caller column on Democrats and reparations, Bishop Aubrey Shines correctly blames Democrats for their substantial role in black oppression: it was the Democratic Party which perpetuated and defended both slavery and Jim Crow, and prominent Democrats like Joe Biden and Bill Clinton have helped enact laws which have fueled mass incarceration and the school-to-prison pipeline.

However, Shines’ claim that “Democratic mayors and city officials” are to blame for black poverty betrays a common yet crucial misunderstanding of the root causes of blacks’ economic condition. Inner cities aren’t poor because they are run by Democrats — they’re run by Democrats because they are poor. The big business elites who economically and politically dominate the US realized long ago it was preferable to have Democrats — particularly black ones — keeping a lid on the low-income minority populations of major cities. This job of promising and pacifying is one which Democrats, with varying degrees of idealism, cynicism and effectiveness, have been willing and able to do.

The real causes of inner-city poverty lay in the de-industrialization of the United States. During the 2016 presidential election, it was President Trump who highlighted this problem, while Democrats have often ignored it.

De-industrialization (and the concomitant

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