About the worst criticism you can offer of someone today, especially an elected official or a candidate for public office, is to call them a racist. President Trump gets this all the time.
Yet, the president hardly ever mentions race in his speeches or tweets. It’s undeniable, however, that his administration has improved conditions for minorities.
The unemployment rate, at 3.7 percent, is close to the lowest in 50 years. Black unemployment is the lowest ever, at 5.5 percent.
“Also at an all-time low,” writes syndicated columnist Star Parker, “is the gap between black and white unemployment.” The gap averages 4.9 percentage points as far back as we have data. It is now 2.1 percent. The Wall Street Journal reports that last year, the labor force participation gap between blacks and whites basically disappeared. The last time this happened was in 1972.
Star Parker, who is black herself and runs the Center for Urban Renewal, says, “This is good news for everyone except those who are more unhappy that Donald Trump is president than they are happy that blacks are working.”
In her article, Star Parker references Robert Johnson, founder of Black Entertainment Television and America’s first black billionaire. On CNBC, Mr. Johnson said, “I think the economy is doing absolutely great and it’s particularly reaching into populations that heretofore have had very bad problems in terms of jobs, unemployment, and the opportunities that come with full employment, so African-American unemployment is at its lowest level.”
Things have also improved for the Hispanic community. As certain presidential candidates complain of inequalities in our economy, Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel points to recent jobs reports which reveal that Hispanic unemployment has also reached historic lows. Plus, she says, “Hispanic-owned businesses are growing rapidly: more than twice the rate of all businesses since 2012.”
Tax cuts and deregulation are behind these positive trends. If we’re honest about them, the racism critique rings hollow.