Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Race and School Discipline: The Leftist Fantasy

Now that Heather McDonald has received the honor of being shouted down and shut up by raving leftist campus bigots, it’s time to review another of her articles.

McDonald, one of our favorite scholars on criminal justice issues, is a “law and order” person. She believes that people who commit crimes should be punished. Since blacks commit proportionately many more crimes than whites, this makes her a racist in the eyes of the politically correct.

Remember, a key doctrine of the politically correct is that anything bad that happens to black people must be the result of white racism.

This past Christmas season, she noted the usual mall flash mobs, mostly consisting of black kids, and remarked on the connection to school discipline. Some key points from her essay:
Judging by video evidence, the participants in the violent mall brawls over the Christmas weekend were overwhelmingly black teens, though white teens were also involved. The media have assiduously ignored this fact, of course, as they have for previous violent flash mob episodes.
Of course, while the media assiduously ignore the racial component of flash mob violence, they can’t resist showing the video. And that tells the story.
That disproportion has significance for the next administration’s school-discipline policies, however. If Donald Trump wants to make schools safe again, he must rescind the Obama administration’s diktats regarding classroom discipline, which are based on a fantasy version of reality that is having serious real-world consequences.

The Obama Justice and Education Departments have strong-armed schools across the country to all but eliminate the suspension and expulsion of insubordinate students. The reason? Because black students are disciplined at higher rates than whites. According to Washington bureaucrats, such disproportionate suspensions can mean only one thing: teachers and administrators are racist. The Obama administration rejects the proposition that black students are more likely to assault teachers or fight with other students in class. The so-called “school to prison” pipeline is a function of bias, not of behavior, they say.

. . .

The idea that such street behavior does not have a classroom counterpart is ludicrous. Black males between the ages of 14 and 17 commit homicide at ten times the rate of white and Hispanic males of the same age. The lack of socialization that produces such a vast disparity in murder rates, as well as less lethal street violence, inevitably will show up in classroom behavior. Teens who react to a perceived insult on social media by trying to shoot the offender are not likely to restrain themselves in the classroom if they feel “disrespected” by a teacher or fellow students. Interviews with teachers confirm the proposition that children from communities with high rates of family breakdown bring vast amounts of disruptive anger to school, especially girls. It is no surprise that several of the Christmas riots began with fights between girls. School officials in urban areas across the country set up security corridors manned by police officers at school dismissal times to avoid gang shootings. And yet, the Obama administration would have us believe that in the classroom, black students are no more likely to disrupt order than white students. Equally preposterous is the claim that teachers and administrators are bigots. There is no more liberal a profession than teaching; education schools are one long indoctrination in white-privilege theory. And yet when these social-justice warriors get in the classroom, according to the Obama civil rights lawyers, they start wielding invidious double standards in discipline.

. . .

Over the last year, a Seattle school district in the throes of “restorative justice” experienced an alleged gang rape and several student deaths. Criminal charges, including murder, were filed against a group of students not yet out of middle school, reports the Seattle Times. Teachers’ unions in Fresno, Des Moines, New York City, and Indianapolis have all lodged complaints about the anti-discipline philosophy, according to Education Week. The Fresno teachers signed a petition pointing out that students are returned to class after cursing at teachers and physically assaulting them, without suffering any consequences. Fresno’s teachers have been injured trying to stop fights; some are retiring because teaching where severely disruptive students cannot be dislodged has become impossible. In Des Moines, students now hit and scream at each other and their teachers, reports the Des Moines Register.
Read the entire article.

Of course, the real “school to prison pipeline” is what happens when schools teach kids they can engage in disruptive and even violent behavior with zero or trivial consequences. That is, unless it becomes the “school to getting yourself killed pipeline” for people like Michael Brown or Trayvon Martin, who somehow thought they could attack an armed individual with impunity.

This whole business reveals the dirty little secret of the race hustlers and the social justice warriors. Deep down, they would rather articulate grievances than make things better for black kids. Of course, they won’t admit this (not even to themselves), but to face the issue squarely, they would have to admit that disorder in the black community creates these kinds of conditions in schools, and that white racism has virtually nothing to do with it.

And if they admit that, their whole world comes crashing down.

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