Monday, March 10, 2008

It's the Money, Honey!

Yesterday, the Newless Courier...okay, okay the Post and Courier had an interesting article on the statistical analysis of expulsions and suspensions in Lowcountry schools. It went on and on and on about race and culture and expectations.

Why the newspaper engaged in the stirring up of the pot (other than to bring out the rabid racists who post on the P&C's website so they can get their "hit" numbers way up)I don't know, because right there in the third and fourth sentences was the answer:

"A family's income was the best predictor for whether students were suspended or expelled, the analysis showed. Low-income students were more likely to be suspended or expelled than their wealthier peers, and that was more true for black students than white students."

Then buried down further: "But black students also constitute a higher number of low-income students. For that reason, it's impossible to determine whether black students are suspended at a higher rate because of biased school policies or because they are poor and facing the myriad of challenges accompanying poverty, such as family instability, Politano said."

In other words, the number of low-income white students is too low to make a statistical comparison. Could be low-income whites are suspended as much as low-income blacks, they can't tell. So why the P&C felt comfortable with reporting "that was more true for black students than white students" when the analyst they hired to do the numbers said it couldn't be done, I don't know.

It's poverty, people! It is not a racial issue, although because blacks and Hispanics make up the majority of the poor in Charleston County it seems like a race issue. Go to a predominantly white state and you will find whites at the same percentages getting kicked out of school, having babies too soon, committing crimes and whatever else racists want to label as norms for minorities.

It is coming from living in poverty, not the skin color. And the numbers of poor are growing every day. And we need to wake up and realize that our current system of social welfare is hurting people, not helping them and we need to get serious about stamping out poverty.

Thor sez: supported hatred gives me a tummy ache.

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