In a recent Wall Street Journal piece Shelby Steele takes aim at the foundation of the Black Lives Matters movement, calling it victim-focused, and ignorant of decades of failed progressive urban policies.
It’s true that many policies that have been promoted under the banner of an attack on systemic racism have – by the accounts from empirical scholars of all political leanings – utterly failed. But is Steele missing the foundational issue that makes any allegation of systemic racism true, regardless of what policies we put forth to eliminate it? Black children, and children of color more generally, are poor – in the extreme – relative to white children.
We cannot coherently talk about racism and policy at all without addressing the core issue – our failure to give all kids a fair start in life – and the specific family planning and redistribution reforms, like baby bonds aimed at creating true equity, that could actually reverse that failure.
Take action: Every child has a fundamental human right to a #fairstart in life. It is the first human right, the one that makes us free and equal people, and as such it overrides all competing interests. Urge Congress to begin to recognize and legislate around the right.