Tuesday, September 26, 2023

Supreme Court Caves to Left on Racial Quotas

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

The Supreme Court sided on Tuesday with federal interference in the Alabama legislature for the second time in four months, by ordering or allowing the liberal judicial override of a redistricting plan. This misuse of the Voting Rights Act obstructs a state legislature from exercising its constitutional authority to reformulate its congressional districts based on population changes.

Some 15 years after Americans elected a black president, and long after black congressmen and senators have been elected by majority-white constituents, the Supreme Court is still falling for the liberal lie that whites won’t elect a black representative. Liberals perpetuate this fiction to increase the number of Democrat-controlled congressional districts, rather than to protect voting rights.

Alabama already has one majority-black congressional district out of seven. But liberals insist that an additional district be drawn based solely on race, even though the Fourteenth Amendment stands against racial discrimination by the government of any state.

Last June the Supreme Court pontificated against universities for basing their admissions decisions in part on race. But that same month, and again this week, the same Supreme Court held that a state legislature must redraw Alabama’s congressional districts based on the race of its voting age population, in order to create the highest possible number of majority-black districts.

A few Justices appear spooked by the possibility that the liberal media might call them racist if they do not require racial quotas in redistricting, even though that was never overtly required before. The Court implicitly adopts the false argument that a district would not elect a black Representative if fewer than half of its voters are black.

Congress currently has four African-American members representing districts with far less than a black majority: Byron Donalds, whose Florida district is 7% black; Wesley Hunt, whose Texas district is 7% black; John James, whose Michigan district is 3% black; and Burgess Owens, whose Utah district is less than 2% black. Sen. Tim Scott represents South Carolina, which is only 26% black, and is a candidate for president.

Of course, all these fine elected officials are Republicans, which is not what liberals seek. Instead, what they want is to maximize the number of Democrat-held districts, regardless of color.

The Supreme Court obliges, as two Republican-appointed Supreme Court Justices who otherwise purport to defend state sovereignty flipped to the liberal side to override the Alabama legislature. This Court that refused to touch any election issue brought by Trump is eager to appease progressives who misuse race to manipulate election outcomes.

The Court refuses to admit that it is demanding the equivalent of unconstitutional racial quotas. Yet on Tuesday, by issuing unsigned orders without comment, the Court reaffirmed its Allen v. Milligan decision last June that requires Alabama to use racial quotas in redistricting.

John Roberts and Brett Kavanaugh were the justices who joined the liberal bloc to expand Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act to force this extraordinary override of a state legislature. Roberts joined despite his ruling in 2013 that Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act was no longer needed, and Kavanaugh concurred despite his caveat that “the authority to conduct race-based redistricting cannot extend indefinitely into the future.”

The fiction of liberals and federal courts pretending to prefer race-blind policies is laid bare by their racial quotas for redistricting. States should not be forced to perpetuate the balkanization of voting along racial lines, coupled with ballot harvesting strategies that in some precincts have delivered nearly every ballot for the Democrat Party.

Our Constitution is color-blind and should be interpreted that way on all issues, not just college admissions. As explained by Clarence Thomas, the senior black justice on the Court, disputes about drawing congressional districts should be resolved “in a way that would not require the Federal Judiciary to decide the correct racial apportionment of Alabama’s congressional seats.”

Every ten years a new census results in states redrawing their congressional districts to account for shifting population and the gain or loss of a congressional seat. The Alabama legislature justifiably sought to keep its southwest Gulf Coast region within one congressional district because there is a community of interest there, while plaintiffs sought to break it into separate districts in order to forge a second majority-Democrat, majority-black district.

Democrats challenged the legislature’s decision based on their theory about the “Black Belt” region of Alabama, so named for the color of its rich soil and not the color of its residents. The Alabama legislature included much of this region in a district where blacks comprised 42% of its population, which should have been enough.

By racially balkanizing Alabama, the Court reduces the likelihood that a black congressman can be elected statewide as Tim Scott has been reelected as senator in South Carolina.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work.

These columns are also posted on PhyllisSchlafly.com, pseagles.com, and Townhall.com.

Tuesday, September 19, 2023

“Social Justice” Demands 4-Day Work Week

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

The Democrat takeover of Michigan in the last election is yielding more harmful consequences. The Detroit-based United Auto Workers (UAW) union has a new far-Left, anti-Trump president, who was elected by fewer than 500 votes in the runoff after losing the first ballot.

This new UAW President Shawn Fain has unleashed a first-ever strike against all three Michigan automakers. While denying that he is wrecking the economy, Fain declared last week that “the truth is we are going to wreck the billionaire economy,” and he will “go the distance to win economic and social justice at the Big Three.”

Fain’s demands on the Detroit Three would double their labor expenses, which are already far higher than at Tesla and other auto manufacturers. About half of cars sold in the U.S. are assembled at foreign-owned plants whose American workers have consistently rejected the UAW’s attempts to organize and represent them.

A central demand by the militant new UAW leadership is to shrink to a 4-day work week while insisting on full 5-day pay. This would harm the competitiveness of the Detroit automakers, and set the precedent for a broad reduction in other services to the American public, such as reduced mail delivery.

Last month this radical new UAW president Shawn Fain declared that “billionaires in my opinion don’t have a right to exist. The very existence of billionaires shows us that we have an economy that is working for the benefit of the few, and not the many.”

The auto workers are being sold down the river by their leadership,” President Trump said before the strike that President Biden failed to avert. The UAW leadership should be demanding an end to Biden’s electric car mandates and subsidies, which are wrecking jobs at Detroit automakers.

On September 27 Trump will address union workers rather than participate in a second Republican debate against rivals who have no chance of winning. Trump has vowed to enact a “complete and total repeal of Democrats’ catastrophic EV mandate,” referring to electric vehicles, on Trump’s first day back in office, to save Michigan and American jobs.

One-third of U.S. auto workers voted for Trump in 2016 and 2020. But instead of representing his politically divided membership, Fain has lashed out against Trump and thereby given away any political leverage the UAW might have had with Biden.

The Wall Street Journal editorial board observed on Friday that “the underlying cause of the auto walkout is the Biden Administration’s forced electric-vehicle transition.” Democrats cannot broker an end to the strike unless they stop crippling the Detroit auto industry with demands for electric cars that use components from China.

Democrats are mandating that electric vehicles become two-thirds of the Detroit automakers’ sales by 2032, even though they are less than 3% today. The car companies’ profits that liberals cite in this strike are being plowed back into money-losing electric car development that few genuinely want.

Disappearing jobs in Michigan and the Midwest would result from the EV mandate that favors Tesla’s manufacturing with cheaper labor. Ignoring this, the UAW’s headquarters in Detroit is called “Solidarity House” while their new leader is a throwback to prior strike waves that destroyed Motown as the engine of America’s prosperity.

This UAW strike is music to the ears of far-Left Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT), who quickly piled on by deploring “the outrageous level of corporate greed.” His comrade in the U.S. Senate, the foul-mouthed John Fetterman (D-PA), joined picketing strikers.

CNN reports that union members, once uniformly Democrat in voting, have increasingly shifted to vote Republican. Impervious to this, Fain warned prior to the strike that “either you stand for a billionaire class where everybody else gets left behind, or you stand for the working class, the working-class people vote.”

It is not the billionaire class that is choking off growth in auto workers’ wages, but the war against the traditional car that is being waged by liberals in California and the Biden administration. California has banned sales of Detroit’s traditional cars beginning in 2035, and California recently sued the oil producing companies on which cheap gasoline depends.

One study by the University of Michigan estimated that a four-week strike against the Big Three – General Motors, Ford, and Stellantis (formerly Chrysler) – would cause a loss of 161,000 jobs in Michigan itself. Already this strike involves 13,000 workers, with ripple effects harming far more, and before long this work stoppage could mushroom to harm hundreds of thousands of families primarily in the Midwest.

The future for American workers is Trump’s consistently strong stance against losing automobile jobs to China and against subsidizing electric cars that Detroit cannot afford to make. Rather than be left behind due to their outdated class warfare rhetoric, the UAW leaders should catch a ride with Trump to attain employment growth with good-paying manufacturing jobs.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work.

These columns are also posted on PhyllisSchlafly.com, pseagles.com, and Townhall.com.

Tuesday, September 12, 2023

Leftist Math Doesn’t Compute

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

Kids are back in school now, but schools are not back to excellence. Our students lag far behind the rest of the world in basic learning, including a dismal ranking in the bottom third in math skills among industrialized nations with whom we compete.

Math is a casualty of the Leftist takeover of education, which makes diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) more important than teaching basic skills. When schools postpone algebra to the ninth grade, students never complete the basic math they need for a STEM-related job.

In their mindless push for greater diversity, New York Democrats
recently dropped the words “math and science” from the name of their once-elite Math & Science Exploratory School in Brooklyn. Test scores at that middle school have plummeted from more than 95% of 7th-graders passing the math exams a half-decade ago to merely 69% passing last year.

The school used to select students based on academic performance, thereby giving families an incentive to compete for admission. But under the DEI approach imposed by New York’s Democrat politicians, the renamed Exploratory School now uses a lottery to select its students, and 52% of accepted students must come from unstable, impoverished, or non-English speaking families.

Math is one of the biggest casualties. The Left disliked how some groups do better at math, particularly advanced math, and this conflicts with the DEI political agenda.

Math competitions are usually won by boys, for example, so prizes and awards are not inclusive. The Leftist solution is to eliminate honors and awards, lumping all the kids together in one dumbed-down math program, and the end result is less achievement.

Studies showed that white and Asian students were enrolling in precalculus math classes at rates of two to four times the rates of black and Hispanic students. To conceal this uncomfortable discrepancy, the DEI ideologues ended the tracking that enables advancement by talented math students, and started requiring everyone to take low-level math classes in high school even though they are too easy for some.

School districts in Democrat-controlled cities, particularly in California, have imposed “de-tracking” to choke off opportunities for high-achieving math students. The purported goal is to provide the same access to advanced math to all students, but the effect is to hold back talented students who have the aptitude to qualify for higher-level classes.

A Stanford study earlier this year showed that de-tracking causes smarter kids to be denied an opportunity for advancement, while yielding no measurable improvement for the kids who were left behind in regular classes. If anything, their progress got worse rather than better.

“Leveling,” another name for de-tracking, prevents students with greater math aptitude from progressing to more advanced material. Distraught parents in the ultra-Democratic enclaves of Silicon Valley and San Francisco filed lawsuits earlier this year to challenge this liberal ideology imposed on the schools.

An impressive total of 50 San Francisco parents filed their lawsuit in March to challenge the leveling or de-tracking policy. The parents want the public schools to restore an Algebra I class to middle school, and stop requiring talented students to retake the same class in ninth grade if they have previously passed it.

On Aug. 29, a Palo Alto school board meeting heard from two-dozen students complaining about the de-tracking. One pointed out how a math placement test appeared designed to block accelerated course enrollment.

There is not enough time for students to get to calculus in high school if they are held back by being forced to take Algebra I as freshmen. In Japan and other countries that are far ahead of us in math education, students learn algebra in middle school.

Recently our students’ math skills have fallen another half-year below where they are expected to be, according to a
report. Some blame this on the Covid pandemic, during which many schools shut down for too long, but a bigger cause is liberals prioritizing equity over education in public schools.

The math achievement in our country has dropped to its lowest level in two decades among fourth-grade and eighth-grade students. Many pre-teens cannot even do basic subtraction with two-digit numbers.

For decades public colleges were forced to offer remedial math programs to help students catch up to where they should be, but recent
studies show that approach to be a failure. Like reading, math is best learned at an early age and it becomes harder to learn basic skills as a student gets older.

Electing conservative school board members may help a bit, but not so much in deep blue states like California where the Democrat-controlled legislature imposes its leftwing ideology statewide. Headed to California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s desk for signature is
Assembly Bill 1078, which would penalize local school boards if they fail to teach the state-mandated DEI curriculum.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work.

These columns are also posted on PhyllisSchlafly.com, pseagles.com, and Townhall.com.

Tuesday, September 5, 2023

Higher Unemployment Worsened by Higher Immigration

The Phyllis Schlafly Report
By John and Andy Schlafly

The end of August brought a double-whammy in government reports. Both unemployment and immigration have sharply increased, and that’s a terrible combination.

Billionaire globalists are just fine with this news, as reflected in an Axios story claiming that “immigrants are coming to the rescue of desperate employers.” The job market is sputtering at a time when illegal border crossings are surging and Biden is allowing a new wave of foreign workers into our country.

More than a million American-born workers were laid off or left their jobs in August, in the sharpest drop since Covid. Meanwhile, many jobs were snatched up by migrants given permission to work here by the Biden administration.

Only a few years ago, President Trump delivered on his pledge to reduce the taking of American jobs by foreign workers, as immigration into the United States declined throughout his presidency. After Obama had allowed a record 1.24 million in net lawful migration to the United States in 2016, Trump got that number down to 376,000 by 2021.

Yet under Biden, net migration shot back up to 1.01 million in 2022. Roughly half of those had official permission to work, as Biden has increased by 335,000 annually the number of permanent green cards and temporary work visas allowing foreigners to grab American jobs.

Other migrants into the U.S. include foreign students attending our universities, like the graduate student from China who was recently charged with murdering his professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Asylum-seekers and refugees are also part of this new wave, and on top of that are the millions of illegal migrants.

The official unemployment rate (among people actively looking for work) rose to 3.8% in August, higher than the 3.5% that was expected. The number of new jobs reported by the government for June and July were adjusted downward by a total of 110,000, in what has become a pattern of revisions decreasing prior reports.

Yet during this same month of August a reported 91,000 poor families from Central and South America migrated illegally into our country. This is the most during the entire Biden administration, and the real number is probably higher.

The Associated Press photographed a family of five plus another man strolling casually and illegally on our side of a border wall in Arizona. Biden is doing nothing to apprehend and return the millions of unlawful migrants who would redefine American culture and politics if this is allowed to continue.

Democrat-controlled New York City recklessly became a sanctuary city in defiance of federal laws, and now its mayor is crying for help to deal with merely 100,000 illegals, which is a tiny fraction of the total influx. A few weeks ago Mayor Eric Adams complained that it’s costing his city $12 billion to house and feed them for three years.

Hordes of illegals are sleeping on the sidewalks outside of the landmark Roosevelt Hotel in midtown Manhattan, which closed during Covid and never reopened. The city’s shelters have filled to capacity, leaving no room for homeless Americans in need.

The liberal solution, believe it or not, is for Biden to increase the number of work permits for illegals rather than deport them. Biden would declare a national emergency and loot American taxpayers if he were not challenged for reelection by Trump, who is running hard against Biden’s open border policies.

Democrat-turned-Independent Kyrsten Sinema, the U.S. Senator running for reelection in Arizona, expressed her outrage that Biden gave New York City $100 million in funding to cope with problems that liberals caused by inviting illegals. “The rest of the country is experiencing some elements of it,” she conceded, “but we are experiencing the brunt” of the crisis in border state Arizona.

Rather than close the southern border, however, Biden’s Department of Homeland Security is starting a “first-of-its-kind national campaign for noncitizens who are work-eligible but have not yet applied for employment authorization.” Filling jobs with illegals displaces the 1.2 million Americans who lost their jobs or left the workforce last month.

On the first day of school last month in Ohio an illegal alien, who had been caught and released by the Biden administration, ran an elementary school bus off the road, killing one child and injuring 26 others. Originally from Haiti he resided in Mexico long enough to obtain a Mexican driver’s license, which he gave to Ohio police and was charged with aggravated vehicular homicide.

Like millions of others who illegally crossed our southern border during this Biden administration, the Haitian migrant was given a notice to appear in immigration court, but then freed to roam wherever he wanted in the U.S. In another recent case in northern Virginia, an illegal alien whose visa expired in 2021 was recently arrested for raping a juvenile.

John and Andy Schlafly are sons of Phyllis Schlafly (1924-2016) and lead the continuing Phyllis Schlafly Eagles organizations with writing and policy work.

These columns are also posted on PhyllisSchlafly.com, pseagles.com, and Townhall.com.