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Racial bias used how?

To the Journal editor:

Racial bias used as a tool of oppression is the exception rather than the rule.

Early 20th century blacks and whites in the North lived, learned and worked together very often without discord. Blacks raised in nuclear families often had better life outcomes than whites from broken homes. They lived in clean neighborhoods and didn’t fear traveling through them at night.

Far more common is the abuse of government power. Ancient Greeks oppressed Greeks, Romans oppressed Europeans, Nazis oppressed Jews, Stalin oppressed fellow Soviets, Hutus vs Tutsis, ISIS vs Yazidis … the list goes on.

In the American South, government officials abused their authority with laws oppressing those over whom they had power.

The Founding Fathers recognized this, yet they fought bitterly over the proper size and role of government. Federalists wanted a strong federal government and weak state governments. Anti-Federalists wanted power in the states, not the federal government. The Federalists won, but the Anti-Federalists forced ratification of the Bill of Rights to more securely protect individual liberties.

Our current government is the result of a compromise of vastly different opinions, but its permanence is not guaranteed. We still fight that battle today, and some people scream racism over every political disagreement.

Woodrow Wilson despised the Constitution for its limits on his power. FDR massively expanded government anyway, prolonging the Great Depression in the process (Cole and Ohanian 1999). Barack Obama disparaged the Bill of Rights calling it a set of negative rights for its limits on executive power.

How many who wish President Obama had the authority to fundamentally transform America as he promised, wish President Trump had the same authority to transform America as he wishes? The irony of course is Mr. Trump is no limited government Conservative.

The problem is we don’t teach our youth the proper things to be outraged about or how to debate those with whom they disagree. For example, a website advocating limited government and individual liberty is pejoratively described as “heavily biased.” This leads to riots on college campuses when young adults fear exposure to differing opinions.

The country has survived eras of discord before and probably will again, but it’s not guaranteed for posterity.

If the internet and Twitter had been invented 250 years earlier, the loyalists and patriots may have killed each other before the nation was even born.

BRAD STRIED

Gwinn

Editor’s note: When this letter was published Tuesday, some of it was inadvertently omitted. It is being published again in its entirety.