Black unemployment: Racism or personal responsibility?

African Americans have the highest unemployment rate of any ethnic group in America, and the disparity is raising eyebrows.

According the most recent Bureau of Labor Statistics report, the black unemployment rate hovers at 16.1 percent – compared with 8 percent among whites, 11.8 percent among Hispanics, and 6.4 percent among Asians. The most recent figures pin the total unemployment rate at 9 percent.

There is not a consensus, however, on the reasons behind the disparity, which Dr. Boyce Watkins has labeled “The Great Black Disconnect,” wherein blacks disassociate their plight from the president’s inaction – yet might fail to put energy into his reelection.

“Like a festering and infected wound that remains untreated, President Obama’s support within the black community is threatened by the fact that the people who love him most are suffering unlike anything our nation has seen over the last 50 years,” Watkins wrote in the Huffington Post.

To Reverend Jesse Jackson the high numbers of unemployed blacks is a “cry for help,” due to systematic racism and a failure to enforce the law. Help has not, however, been as forthcoming as the civil rights leader would have liked to see. For, while the president has had numerous conferences on the economic struggles of Americans, Jackson thinks it is high time for a conference on the plight of blacks in the workforce.

“This involves the White House, the Congress, and the Department of Justice, and corporate America. All these institutions would see the value of some kind of White House conference on racial justice” Jackson told The Daily Caller.

Ward Connerly, chairman of the American Civil Rights Institute, on the other hand, told TheDC that while there might be some elements of racism in the culture, they are isolated and do not explain the disparity, it is largely an education and immigration issue.

“The more likely factors are these: for skilled positions, blacks are less educated and less skilled than whites and Asians; and for unskilled positions, I believe illegal immigrants are having a huge effect on black unemployment,” Connerly wrote in an email. “We can find this in construction-related jobs and in the food service industries, in particular. And, of course, in agriculture, Hispanics are dominant.”

According to Connerly there is a “tipping point” for certain jobs, particularly unskilled labor where not only is there a language barrier, but also a stereotype that Hispanics are better workers .

“For example,” he explained, “take the roofing industry. Once a crew gets a critical mass of Hispanics, it becomes extremely difficult to bring non-Hispanics on the job. Language, for example, is a major factor. I have heard crew superintendents say that disputes will break out over such silly factors as which radio station to play – Spanish speaking or rock and roll. So, the problems are complicated, but I don’t believe that outright racism is a major factor.”

Hoover Institution research fellow, Shelby Steele told TheDC that the problem is most associated with the breakdown of the black family, lack of education, and failure of personal responsibility.

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  • cramos

    I am a person of color!

    The sadness of this article is that Blacks in this country live on a plantation run by the Democratic Party and they do not know it.

    Obama and his crew, Rev Wright , Valerie Jarret, Bill Ayers, Jesse Jackson and all of the rest of them have become millionaires……… working the Democatric poverty plantation,

    When will people of color realize that after trillions of dollars in programs to assist them………….that they are no better off!

    The only ones getting richer are the Democrat’s running the plantation.

    People of color are a means to an end to achieve the progressive agenda…..they do not care about the poor……..Democrats helped destroy the black nuclear family making fathers unecessary………..Democrats with planned parenthood fuel the genocide of black babies.

    • StacyR

      Our country and the people in it are broken. Lots of work todo.

      OsiXs (Revolution 2.0)

  • Reader2011

    A lot of you guys sound like angry bigots that are stereotyping blacks.

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  • James Graham

    Well, here it is!, Compare, What do you THINK????,Note Where are the SEALS,!!!!

    To me it’s the story written below the documents (explains how Hawaii has a registration) that adds fuel to the fire. No, I’m not a “birther”. At this point, it doesn’t matter anymore.

    Here it is, folks! The document we have been waiting for!
    Now if only SOMEONE in Congress or the Supreme Court will act on this!

    Spread this around…..if these documents are as authentic as they certainly seem to be,
    Obama is NOT qualified to be our President and he sits in the White House illegally!

    This is what Obama has spent almost $2M (so far) to hide.

    Here’s a close-up of the top of the document where you can plainly read his name and his parent’s names, etc….

    A British history buff was asked if he could find out who the colonial registrar was for Mombasa in 1961.
    After only a few minutes of research, he called back and said “Sir Edward F. Lavender†Note the same name
    near the bottom of the photo above.
    Source(s): “ Kenya Dominion Record 4667 Australian library.”

    And here’s a close-up of the bottom of the document where you can read “Coast Providence of Kenya ” and the
    official signature of the Deputy Registrar…..

    The above document is a “Certified Copy of Registration of Birth”, but below is a copy of the actual Certificate of Birth…
    the real-deal legal kind of certificate.

    The Mombasa Registrar of Births has testified that Obama’s birth certificate from Coast Province General Hospital in
    Mombasa is genuine. This copy was obtained by Lucas Smith through the help of a Kenyan Colonel who recently got it
    directly from the Coast General Hospital in Mombasa , Kenya . Here it is…..

    Note the footprint!!

    The local Muslim Imam in Mombasa named Barack with his Muslim middle name Hussein so his official name on this
    certificate is Barack Hussein Obama II.

    The grandmother of Barack Hussein Obama, Jr. reveals the story of his birth in Mombasa , Kenya , a seaport,
    after his mother suffered labor pains while swimming at ocean beach in Mombasa

    “On August 4, 1961 Obama’s mother, father and grandmother were attending a Muslim festival in Mombasa , Kenya .
    Mother had been refused entry to airplanes due to her nine month pregnancy. It was a hot August day at the festival so
    the Obama’s went to the beach to cool off. While swimming in the ocean his mother experienced labor pains so was
    rushed to the Coast Provincial
    General Hospital , Mombasa , Kenya where Obama was born a few hours later at 7:21 pm on August 4, 1961
    (what a sad day for the USA !). Four days later his mother flew to Hawaii and registered his birth in Honolulu
    as a certificate of live birth which omitted the place and hospital of birth.”

    Letter from Kitau in Mombasa , Kenya ……

    “I happen to be Kenyan. I was born 1 month before Obama at Mombasa medical center. I am a teacher here at the
    MM Shaw Primary School in Kenya . I compared my birth certificate to the one that has been put out by Taitz and mine is
    exactly the same. I even have the same registrar and format. The type is identical. I am by nature a skeptical person.
    I teach science here and challenge most things that cannot be proven. So I went to an official registrar today and pulled up
    the picture on the web. They magnified it and determined it to be authentic. There is even a plaque with Registrar Lavenders
    name on it as he was a Brit and was in charge of the Registrar office from 1959 until January of 1964. The reason the date on
    the certificate says republic of Kenya is that we were a republic when the “copy” of the original was ordered.
    I stress the word “copy”. My copy also has republic of Kenya . So what you say is true about Kenya not being a republic
    at the time of Obama’s birth, however it was a republic when the copy was ordered.

    The birth certificate is genuine. I assure you it will be authenticated by a forensic auditor. We are very proud Obama was born here.
    We have a shrine for him and there are many people who remember his birth here as he had a white mother.
    They are being interviewed now by one of your media outlets.

    Fortunately they even have pictures of his parents with him immediately after his birth at the Mombasa hospital with the
    hospital in the back ground.

    It will be a proud day for us when it is proven that he was born here and a Kenyan became the most powerful man in the world.

    I encourage anyone to come here and visit. I will be happy to take you and show you the pictures at the hospital myself as
    well as my document and many others that are identical to what Taitz posted. God Bless. Kitau”