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Lawrence,

White policemen have been killing black men since the civil war... the only thing that has changed recently is cell phones recording video.

In some places, yes. In other places, no.

Freed slaves were promised land and the GOP refused to fund it.

There was a whole lot else that failed when the slaves were set free, too. For starters, they were not given an opportunity to acquire education.

I dare say that the last sixty years of our lifetime are a lot more relevant than a century and a half ago.

It is not just a racial issue it is also an economic issue.

Actually, what I see is much more of an economic issue than a racial issue. In the city of Boston, which is much closer to my home than I would like, the white disadvantaged neighborhoods have exactly the same problems as the black disadvantaged neighborhoods.

But the root of the economic issue is an educational issue that has persisted for decades. Except for a couple prestigious "exam" high schools, the city of Boston's public schools are a stark contrast to those of the surrounding suburban communities -- even the suburban communities that are just as economically disadvantaged as the city. And for the record, the city of Boston spends more per student on its public school system than any suburban community.

But at the root of the educational issue is a political establishment that pays lip service to education while using the school system's central administration as a place to provide "good jobs at good wages" to connected friends of influential politicians who have no competence in education, that perpetuates curricula that have been proven to fail, and that endorses "social promotion" of students who fail to master the material that they should learn in each grade anyway, setting those students up for failure in the next grade because they lack an adequate foundation for the next grade's material.

And also at the root of the economic issue is a welfare system that historically ensnared people in dependence that often endured for generations rather than helping people to develop the skill sets to find productive and gainful employment and empowering them to move up the economic ladder, sustained by the very same political establishment that runs the city's schools.

When a black community becomes economically viable it is frequently targeted and sometimes in our history it has been violent... it is not just native American villages that were massacred.

That's deplorable where it happened.

But, again, that's not universally true everywhere.

Norm.
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