Posted under Academia
To be poor and white in America basically means you’ll probably stay poor and white. I say probably because there’s always the occasional go-getter or two, but when a recent study showed that elite academia has no interest in having poor or middle to low middle class whites attend their colleges and universities, even such go-getters are steered to the local state school or community colleges. Or join they join the military because they find no other reasonable chance for advancement without putting their lives at risk or come back from Iraq with a limb shot off just to pay for college. It sounds like career tracking to me.
Elite schools can congratulate themselves thinking they’ve recreated study bodies that reflect a post-racial, managerial based society. But also may very well have created large pockets of resentment in the rural ghettos of our nation. In past they may not have been a huge problem because a white person could work at a factory or own a farm and make a decent living without having to go to Harvard. Such options hardly exist anymore. He or she would have to take on mountains of debt and have own 2,000 head of livestock to make any kind of living on the land. What factories their are may very well employ illegal immigrants working willing to have their hands sliced off for $1.25 an hour just so they can experience the joys of indoor plumbing. Its hard to see what job skills community colleges are supposed to teach since glass towers are rarely found outside big cities that thousands of poor whites flee to every year looking for work.
Some enlightened college administrator may look at this study and ask themselves “Do we really want to create more Tim McVeighs”? The “fire next time” for whites may very well come with demobilized vets from “Global War on Terror” finding themselves working McJobs after leading whole squads, companies and platoons in Iraq. Given that they may be no majority race by 2042, the call for white quotas may become stronger and stronger. Sarah Palin may very well be to underclass whites was Jesse Jackson was to underclass blacks. The question is for conservatives, are these the paths we want to follow down? Because if they are, then years of rehtoric about meritocracy, affirmative action and identity politics along with snide remarks about elitism at Harvard might as well be chucked out the window right now.
This brings up an interesting point in a recent article Patrick Deenan just wrote. We can point out the Ivy League’s bigotry against poor whites as we should. But is encouraging the young and the ambitious to join the “creative class” in a blue state when they graduate really what we want to encourage?
“Members of the meritocracy are well aware of whom they have left behind, and rather than assuming the personal obligation of old to those less fortunate, they elect instead to pay an impersonal middleman—government—to deal with the aftereffects of what Wendell Berry has called the “strip-mining” of talent from every town and hamlet in the world. At the same time, they demand that everyone else pay up as well—what would have been personal forms of responsibility have instead been spread to the entire population, including those they purport to succor. As Christopher Lasch wrote, “obligation, like everything else, has been depersonalized; exercised through the agency of the state, the burden of supporting it falls not on the professional and managerial class but, disproportionately, on the lower-middle and working class.”
Elite education is basically what the elites want you to know and it has been from time immemorial. Encouraging the “best and brightest” to shake off their “little town blues” has been what Cosmos have been encouraging also since time immemorial. Sending kids to the elite diploma mill may serve our sense of justice but it may not be in the best long-term interests of rural America. Perhaps it may be best to encourage those who wish to seek higher education to seek it at their local colleges and universities close to home, enter into the education field instead of leaving it to the Left, and encourage more autodidactism among adults to continue the process of learning and self-discovery (the way a country doctor named Ron Paul taught himself Austrian economics). Because the last thing whites on the lower end of the economic scale need is a culture that thrives on vulgarity, drugs (meth, heroin) violence and “keeping it real” and frowns on education (in some places this has already begun). Because at that point, to be poor and white in America will only become self-perpetuating.