And they get invited to events put on by crooks like GOP grifter, Ralph Reed and his Faith and Freedom Coalition. That is where West, the former Florida Congressman and future FOX contributor was recorded waxing nostalgically about the good old days when African American communities supposedly fostered entrepreneurship, before LBJ and the Great Society came along and tore down the wondrous accomplishments of Jim Crow,
He blamed most of the the troubles that have befallen African-Americans on the legacy of Lyndon Johnson’s administration. Pointing to a man who had 22 children with 17 women, West said it was an example of “the unintended consequences and second and third order effects” of LBJ’s Great Society and War on Poverty. Johnson also signed the Civil Rights and Voting Rights Acts into law.What a load of revisionist crap, thought I, as I composed a rant and compiled and reviewed references to LBJ's accomplishments during the glorious Summer of 1964, as he was about to be elected in a landslide to a full term as President. All of that is out in the tall grass, if you are interested.
West said that in the Atlanta he grew up in, he “could see black entrepreneurship.” But now he sees a “shell of that,” with no black entrepreneurship in sight.
Right Allen. You were three years old when LBJ signed the Civil Rights Act of 1964. I was 15 and lived in a political family. I lived through and paid attention to that Presidential campaign and that Summer of unprecedented legislative triumphs of progressive policy implementation and social progress that came to a climax when Democrats totally kicked GOP ass in the November election.
When you were 14 years old, Allen, I spent time in Atlanta while a Naval officer and had friends from there. I was well aware of the importance and strength of the civil right movement in Atlanta and that the City of Atlanta had begun an unprecedented era of growth, spreading prosperity and civil rights progress. When you were 14, Allen, Atlanta elected its first African-American Mayor, Maynard Jackson, a formidable activist for his community. According to the New York Times:
But it was his fiery advocacy for the new black majority that had elected him -- in particular, by setting up affirmative-action programs for hiring city workers and contractors, and by giving neighborhoods a voice in city planning -- that constituted a political revolution in the heart of the South. Seemingly overnight, it transformed Atlanta into a mecca for talented, aspiring blacks from across the country.Gee, Allen, what a setback for African American entrepreneurs in Atlanta while you grew up there. And, Allen, if you think all of that Black entrepreneurship in Atlanta has faltered somehow, tell that to the talented and accomplished members of the Atlanta Black Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce.
In terms of barriers to prosperity coming to the Black neighborhoods of Atlanta during those years when you were growing up, Allen, a reasonably accurate, if incomplete explanation is found in the State's official history:
Despite the passage of federal civil rights legislation, public facilities in Georgia and throughout the region remained segregated in many areas well into the 1970s. Even as recalcitrant communities succumbed to federal pressure, de facto residential segregation remained a common feature in many locales throughout the state. Atlanta's indices of residential segregation actually increased between 1940 and 1980, as middle-class whites abandoned urban residential areas for new developments on the suburban periphery. Similar developments occurred in other cities throughout the region, and today the persistence of segregated residential patterns in contemporary southern communities attests to Jim Crow's enduring legacy.If you want instead to talk about the objective reality of that Great Society Summer of 1964, consider this list of legislation signed into law in July and August, while LBJ ran against Goldwater (who opposed all of it). Remember laws back then had names that actually described what they did, unlike today's propagandistic titles
The Economic Opportunity Act 1964The following year, with swollen Democratic majorities in Congress, LBJ carried on with the Voting Right Act, Medicare, Medicaid, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Department of Housing and Urban Development, among other initiatives.
Provided training to disadvantaged youths aged 16-21
Helped low income students to work their way through college
Recruited volunteers to work and teach in low income slum areas
The Re-Development Act 1964
Provided money for replacing inner city slums with new homes.
Civil Rights Act of 1964
Urban Mass Transportation Act of 1964
Economic Opportunity Act of 1964
Wilderness Preservation Act of 1964
When you were three years old, in Atlanta, Georgia, Allen, Jim Crow ruled your world. In the next few years, unprecedented change occurred. In the 50 years from 1914 to 1964, social and economic progress for African Americans had happened, but very slowly and gradually and very, very partially. Suddenly, there was a revolution, built on a foundation of unprecedented federal government action taken entirely within its lawful powers. The pace of change and improvement accelerated enormously, though it remains incomplete. In the 50 years since 1964, race in America has remained a messy problem that won't go away. But things are much better and continue to improve. Evidence of that is everywhere, from the occupant of the White House to the White Panic about it.
So Allen, when you are speaking to an audience principally comprised of White Southerners, and you want to talk about why African Americans have yet to achieve economic and social equality in America, don't waste time trying to blame LBJ. Just ask the audience members to look at the persons sitting on their right and their left. Allen, sadly, by going in front of a white, Christian, mostly Southern crowd and pretending progress has hurt Blacks, you are a pitiful caricature of a kind of clown act that I had hoped had become purely historical. You sound perfect for FOX.