Thursday, February 6, 2014

oh slate, you funny

In Slate's never ending quest to blame reality on the absurd, a recent piece puts the onus for Atlanta's total shutdown not on the weather, but on racism. Yep, those mean cracker-jack assholes hated blacks so hard that Atlanta got iced da fugg up.

Note that this is a real article, not satire, written in 2014, in a mainstream (though awful) "news" site.

Obviously Atlanta is in the south, where it's hot, where they don't generally deal with blizzards and ice storms. They don't have the resources to deal with such infrequent occurrences, so when they do happen, it is a huge pain in the ass. Totally understandable. Not ideal, but makes sense.

What you may not know though, is that the underlying, insidious reason they don't have those resources is because racism.

Following are a couple quotes from the article, completely undoctored, but obviously taken out of context, but, uh, still.

First sentence of the "piece", they say:

This week’s weather fiasco in Atlanta, which stranded thousands of commuters on glassy-slick roads and gridlocked the entire metro region for the better part of 24 hours, was caused by a freak snowstorm, they say.

On the push for Atlanta to raise taxes to build mass transit in Atlanta being based on racism rather than uh, higher taxes:

Plain and simple, it was white folks’ fear of black folks that explained the failure of a sales-tax hike to fund rapid rail in three of the then five counties making up the metro Atlanta area.

On the reason for racial income inequality, and more importantly, possible solutions:


On the reason for huge suburban sprawl and why it's bad:


What did we learn here? 

All I'm getting from this article is that if I had more blacks in my neighborhood, the weather would be better. Okay, okay, and Atlanta is unique in that the city is split up between a bunch of different counties, and yeah, that makes getting things done, city-wide, difficult. 

Sad truth is that when a neighborhood is predominately black, it's probably going to be crime-ridden and poor. Oddly, those are two qualities not on my neighborhood desirability checklist. Because I don't want to live in a poor, crime-ridden part of town, does that make me racist? Depends who you ask, but if you ask a reasonable person, aside from a dismissive chuckle, you'd probably get a no. 

Does it make me mad? Not really. 

But what does make me angry is the blame placed on the general idea of white people. Ok, and the two most popular proposed solutions - blaming white people and more handouts - that does piss me off.

Instead of giving these poor people enough handouts to live right at the poverty level, with no accountability, what about giving handouts that contribute to their betterment? And I'm a Libertarian, I hate the idea of giving people free shit, but it seems as Americans, we demand it. If handouts can actually contribute to a better environment, chances are very high that things would be better. Look at Richard Sherman, some might think he is the exception, rather than the rule, rising to success from literally shit.

But I would say it's the opposite; he's the rule. Coming from Compton, he was driven, had great parents that wanted their son to succeed, and the dude wound up doing well for himself. As far as success, he's a stud NFLer, so that may be the exception.

Anyway, whether receptive or not, these people need a hand; we need to say we tried. But like full-on tried, not like half-assed tried. 

Start with education - how to not have kids at 13, how to not get addicted to drugs, how to be a better and active parent, how to apply yourself in school, help with middle and high school, help with picking a career, help with interviewing, help with the first two years of college*, if qualified, help with a bachelors degree, help with getting healthy food on the table, help with being healthy, etc.

Yep, I'm talking about full on robbery - redistribution of wealth. If the money is going to be taken from me anyway, it would be much better spent helping people here instead of funding wars.

Oh, and then we have this asshole clamoring for a dictatorship in Atlanta.

*Across the country, skilled labor - taught at technical colleges - is in much demand. The focus on everybody needing a bachelors degree is insane for many reasons, and another conversation for another time. 

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