I pointed out yesterday’s great post by Obsidian at “Just Four Guys.” The social pathologies destroying the old black neighborhoods are coming to everyone’s neighborhoods eventually unless something changes. The interesting comments provoked me to write a short summary of what I think about the problem, and what should be done to start changing it before it spreads further:
I just read Jeb Kinnison’s answer.
Not my answer — I actually wrote my post reporting on a study showing very young black men in an inner-city environment start out hoping for an intimate, trusting long-term relationship before social pressures and negative experience turn them cynical and hard. Then I saw Obsidian’s post.
I’m blindingly white but we can all see what has happened and feel bad about it.
I get what he’s saying: you can’t just bring the old rules back lock, stock, and barrel. However, one shouldn’t be so quick to discount the old norms, as they got the job done.
If, by “repressive norms,” one means holding women accountable for their misbehavior and socially punishing them the way we do with misbehaving men, that is the price to pay. Enabling people to blow up their families at will and treat their partners like criminals just because they’re not sexy enough does nothing to solve this. You can’t eat your cake and have it, with only men working hard and honoring their vows while women get away with the most selfish and hateful behavior.
The old rules wasted potential and did harm to people who were different from the norm. Bringing back some accountability and social pressure is the likely route to a more civilized future.
It isn’t like one group of people suddenly decided to be irresponsible in a vacuum; incentives changed. I’ve seen most of the causes cited already in the comments: social welfare “helping” people into dependency and supporting single mothers over families; the movement of pillars of the old black districts to suburbs; and the abandonment of “bourgeois” norms in those areas as the tide of disorder rose.
Disorder begets more decay and more disorder. The black markets created by the Drug War financed the gangs that sprang up, and feral children began shooting each other over turf. Frightened people authorized longer and longer sentences, more prisons were built and filled with young black men, supporting them in limbo and teaching them to live a life of crime.
End the Drug War and stop financing the lives of criminals (and the army of prison guards, lawyers, politicians, and social workers they support.) Gradually transition to a real economy of voluntary work as the source of all support for people, and the natural laws of getting along with other people — customers, bosses, employees, and partners — will return. The lack of accountability for irresponsible women and men will evaporate when there’s no supporting yourself without being cooperative and civilized.
And then there’ll be a community to disapprove of selfish and short-sighted choices.
Death by HR: How Affirmative Action Cripples Organizations
[From Death by HR: How Affirmative Action Cripples Organizations, available now in Kindle and trade paperback.]
Corporate HR Scrambles to Halt Publication of “Death by HR”
Nobody gets a job through HR. The purpose of HR is to protect their parent organization against lawsuits for running afoul of the government’s diversity extortion bureaus. HR kills companies by blanketing industry with onerous gender and race labor compliance rules and forcing companies to hire useless HR staff to process the associated paperwork… a tour de force… carefully explains to CEOs how HR poisons their companies and what steps they may take to marginalize this threat… It is time to turn the tide against this madness, and Death by HR is an important research tool… All CEOs should read this book. If you are a mere worker drone but care about your company, you should forward an anonymous copy to him.
More on Social Decay:
“Marriage Rate Lowest in a Century”
Making Divorce Hard to Strengthen Marriages?
The High Cost of Divorce
Divorced Men 8 Times as Likely to Commit Suicide as Divorced Women
Cuba: Where All but the Connected are Poor
“Postcards from Venezuela”
Ross Douthat on Unstable Families and Culture
“Income Inequality” Propaganda is Just Disguised Materialism
“Marriage Markets” – Marriage Beyond Our Means?
Real-Life “Hunger Games”: Soft Oppression Destroys the Poor
Why Did Black Crime Syndicates Fail to Go Legit?
“Why Are Great Husbands Being Abandoned?”
Public Schools in Poor Districts: For Control Not Education
Culture Wars: Peace Through Limited Government
Steven Pinker on Harvard and Meritocracy
“Breaking Bad”–The Lessons of Walter White