Showing posts from November, 2010

No Time for Compromise; It’s Time to Fight

In the words of President Obama, the Democrat Party took a " shellacking " on Election Day. Congressional Republicans picked up at least 60 seats in the House, regaining control of the chamber. They took at least six seats in the Senate, though not enough to take control from the Democrats. I eagerly anticipated the President's first press conference. I wanted to hear his take on the election and to hear what he had to say about how Democrats with the help of their progressive allies would move forward. I was hoping that he would stand up, dust himself off, and recommit to the vision he had when he won the White House. I was wrong. Instead, Obama was somber and sounded beaten rather than emboldened by the Republican's triumphant return to power. Rather than say he was ready to fight, the President said that he had been humbled by the election results. He sounded contrite, almost apologetic for the past two years. He even agreed with a claim made by Tea Party activists

Culture versus Structure: The Never Ending Debate About The Causes Of Black Poverty

Ever since the publication of then, assistant secretary of labor, Daniel Patrick Moynihan's report entitled, "The Negro Family: The Case for National Action," there has been a fierce debate in both popular and scholarly literature about the causes of black poverty and racial and ethnic inequality in American society more generally. In what became known as "the Moynihan report," the future U.S. Senator from New York created a firestorm of controversy with his contention that cultural pathologies, including the breakdown of the black family, were the leading causes of black poverty. Many conservatives and some liberals praised Moynihan's work. Critics, on the other hand, responded that Moynihan did not focus enough on structural factors, such as discrimination in the labor market, to explain racial inequality and that his emphasis on cultural factors amounted to simply blaming the victim. In the decades since the publication of Moynihan's study, the schola