I won’t bother going through the usual ‘who did what, when and who do we blame’ scenario when It comes to decade upon decade of failing the poor, minorities, and black students, high levels of crime and violence, drugs etc. I would, however, like to consider a long term approach to actually fixing the problem. And, it’s not really even about race…. It’s about poverty and expectations. Poverty and low expectations are not a race issue, they are a societal one. In my view, the issue starts with parents. For reasons that I will not go into (because it’ll just distract from the actual point), we have generation after generation of uneducated Americans whose life appears to be a pattern, outlined below: Teenage girl, raised by a teenaged single Mom, has sex, gets pregnant, has child. That child knows no other life, sees no other examples in her community and repeats the pattern. So we have intergenerational children raising children, and that not just within families but across whole neighborhoods and communities. Because we have children raising children, those children are raised by Moms (let’s temporarily forget about ‘baby daddy’s’ – I’ll come back to them later) who are ill-prepared to raise a child properly. By ‘properly’, I mean to encourage their child to work hard at school, set boundaries and instil discipline, respect for themselves and other people, and love. Boys are raised with no male role model, so their view of life is equally stilted. They see females as disposable, children as disposable, and life as something that happens rather than a series of opportunities to seize or ignore. They have kids by different females, most take no responsibility – financially or in any other way. That’s the pattern. The question for society is this…. Is that acceptable in the United States? I would say no. We have an intergenerational issue of people with no expectations, breeding another generation with no expectations. That is what we need to address. So, how do we address it? That’s a really, really hard one… and the answers are not going to be pretty. They will require very hard choices…. And they will require money. Here is what I think we should do: We need to enforce education on young people. It’s not an optional extra. That means we need to get into the poor communities and show them another way. Sounds easy. It’s not. Because they won’t necessarily want to learn it. But, if we get to the children – and their teenage parents – and insist (not a choice…. I know, I know, the liberals are gonna scream about their rights – and the right will scream about the Constitution…. but we as a society simply cannot afford an ever growing group of uneducated, disengaged citizens – financially, we cannot afford them). So…. How about we tell those young people who have children ‘That’s it – no more welfare for any more kids’. We’ll provide them with alternatives, give them access to birth control and reward them for following a program to help them raise the next generation to have higher expectations. We provide any help they need – housing, drugs, counselling, education We need them to LEARN a better way. Obviously, the cost of such a program would be significant. Actually, it would be frightening. So, how do we pay for it? Well, that’s where we need to be even more creative. We should get the private sector to fund it. Now the right wing will be screaming at me and the liberals will be thrilled! Work with me…. It’ll get clearer!! IF we could solve these problems, we could save vast amounts of money. So, we get the private sector to fund it and we pay them back – and we pay them bonuses – from the savings made on a vastly reduced welfare bill. And we could part fund it through bonds – and let ordinary Americans profit from helping their fellow Americans. Solve that one problem and we can: 1. Cut crime and save money – the more educated someone is, the less likely they are to commit crime. Those with decent jobs are less likely to commit crime. We’d save vast amounts within the justice system, court costs, prison, community sentences, etc. 2. An educated workforce attracts jobs. Instead of haemorrhaging jobs like we are, we would attract inward investment (foreign jobs) into our country. 3. Save vast amounts on welfare, so we could afford to better help those truly deserving it. Those who are not capable of taking care of themselves, the elderly, children, those with mental problems, or physical disabilities. 4. Cut taxes – who doesn’t want more money in their pocket. That money creates jobs, because the more we have, the more we spend – and we wouldn’t have to run up credit to do it. The whole thing needs to be detailed out but, in general, as a concept, USMB, what do you think? I know it’s gonna bump up against the Constitution in some areas, and I know it would not be as straightforward as I outline but as a concept…. Would it work or am I just an idealist?