America’s “First Black President” is a Disaster for African-American Middle Class

Friday, July 29, 2011

We know unemployment in America is horrendous. But for African-Americans, this is not the “great recession”: it’s the Great Depression. Black unemployment stands at 16.2% in many U.S. cities.

Take Charlotte, N.C., for example. It is a jewel of the “new South.” The largest financial center outside of New York City, and the location for next year’s Democratic National Convention. It was a city of opportunity for African Americans with a four-year college degree.

According to an analysis by the Economic Policy Institute, in Charlotte, NC, the unemployment rate for African-Americans is a staggering 19.2 percent. When adding in people who have given up looking for jobs, that number far exceeds 20 percent, and according to economists Algernon Austin and William Darity, has effectively mired blacks in a depression.

Take Vanessa Parker. She was an administrative assistant at IBM in Charlotte. She went to night school to better herself, graduating with a bachelor’s degree in finance. Parker and her husband saved up enough money to move from a bad neighborhood to a quiet, middle-class street. But instead of moving up in the company, IBM moved out. Now she works at a big-box store for minimum wage.

The Congressional Black Caucus wants President Obama to address the epidemic of worsening black unemployment on his watch. But, so far, the president has resisted the idea of a jobs program specifically targeting African-Americans. His position is Reaganesque, believing a rising tide will lift all boats. But the tide remains out-to-sea as far as job creation goes.

In fact, on the issue of African American community unemployment, President Obama is eerily silent leading some to argue that America’s “first black president” has been a disaster for black Americans.

This entry was posted in African Americans, Middle Class, News, President Barack Obama, U.S. Economy and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

12 Responses to America’s “First Black President” is a Disaster for African-American Middle Class

  1. stradella says:

    My family has suffered economically since Obama was elected. No doubt about it.

    If I hear one more, white Obama supporter say, “But the president inherited Bush’s economy, so we can’t blame the president,” I swear to God I will scream.

    We’re nearing the end of Obama’s third, God damned year as president. This is HIS economy now, HIS failure to create jobs, and HIS failure to hold onto the US House of Representatives. If Obama ain’t up to the job, then go back to Chicago.

    I won’t be voting for him in 2012. I gave the brother a chance and he blew it.

  2. Insouciant says:

    Obama’s concentric circle of support is shrinking by the hour. From black Americans, to Hispanics, to gay and lesbian Americans, the elderly and independents, I just don’t see what Obama has left to take to the bank unless he somehow manages to rig and throw and the results of the 2012 election a la, Bush in Florida. I view his reelection bid through the mirror of meritocracy and from this point of view, Obama hasn’t earned another four years as president.

  3. Joe in Colorado says:

    I’m not sure what Obama has done during his three years in the White House? I know all of his first year was spent on healthcare and courting Sens. Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins. Beyond this, I just don’t see any mending of the economy and there sure as well aren’t new jobs. No wonder the Middle Class continues to shrink.

  4. Ypsilanti says:

    A sobering piece, Christopher.

    Here in Michigan, African Americans have experienced unemployment rates of 20 percent or higher in virtually every quarter since 2009, but as of 2010 black middle class unemployment in Michigan hit a record 23.4 percent, rivaling the top unemployment rates seen during the Great Depression of the 1930s.

    By contrast, Michigan’s white unemployment rate declined from a peak of 12.7 percent in the last quarter of 2009 to 9.5 percent in the last quarter of 2010.

    President Obama may believe a rising tide floats all boats but the reality he refuses to admit is under his leadership, African Americans have neither a boat, water or a float.

  5. Sayingwhatneedsaying says:

    America’s first Black ‘Resident’ has been a disaster for the Planet! because he lacks the BALLS to be a leader!

  6. Brigadoon says:

    From what I can tell, the only folks who have done well during Obama’s reign are the bankers and the military, industrial complex players. No wonder there’s such a cold vibe surrounding this man. He’s certainly not a populist. He’s a Harvard elite.

  7. Marcus Ybanez says:

    End NAFTA.

    End NAFTA now, let the Bush era tax cuts expire and watch every American’s standard of living improve within six months. This isn’t rocket science and I would assume Obama and Geithner, university educated men, would be smart enough to see the cause and effect.

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  9. Eric Equality Kuntz says:

    When Obama signed off on an extension of the Bush era tax cuts I knew I couldn’t vote for this guy in 2012. I’ll vote Green, write in a candidate or stay home. Obama works for the bankers and Wall Street.

    He’s a shameless tool.

  10. Seabec says:

    The Bush era tax cuts are not scheduled to expire December, 2012. Unless they get extended again then, the congress might as well just make them permanent.

  11. tim says:

    I’m just glad i never fell for his con artist style lies.

  12. j .mcmillan says:

    How could Obama do much of ANYTHING with much of his spent defending himself against racist extremists in the Republican Party and in certain areas of the media bent on discrediting him at every single turn??? These “PEOPLE” have dedicated themselves to contesting every single piece of legislation to ever come out of the Oval Office……then there was the Birther issue and the Healthcare debacle AND his faith. He has been accused of almost every crime on the books including terrorism. He was investigated by some who accused him of being a Muslim. He was very loudly called a “Liar” in the middle of a speech by a racist politician who wanted nothing more than to insult the BLACK President. Obama has had to endure far more public slander and insults than any other president in the history of America AND the entire fiasco can be traced to his skin color despite the viral denials of many Americans. There is no way humanly possible for one President to undo the damage done over several decades by other Presidents in only three years. American Cooperation’s have deliberately shipped millions of jobs overseas in order to save a buck by paying foreign workers slave wages and then insulting Americans by bringing their goods back to America for sale to the very workers that they laid off in the first place! This has been going on for decades yet some expect Obama to literally undo this practice single-handedly.
    The Republican Party as well as many on certain media networks have finally shown their true colors and they are lily white. Many Americans, although they would deny it with their dying breathe, are incensed at the very idea of a person of color sitting in the White house. Many of the placards and signs at Tea Party rallies were blatantly racists with drawing of the President and his wife as monkeys. His children were even verbally assaulted by FOX news…..meanwhile, his predecessor, Bush, initiated a war with Iraq based on false intelligence and smugly admitted it later on National Television. Bush also borrowed a fortune from some of our worst enemies, Red China and Saudi Arabia, in order to finance his little war with absolutely no method for repayment leaving America “in hock” to the devil. President Clinton, a well known womanizer, had sex in the Oval Office with an Intern then looked straight into television camera’s and lied about it. Neither of these men fared half as bad as Obama although both deserved to be impeached for their actions. The rest of the World is looking at us and our declaration that all are equal in the great “Melting Pot” of America, and they are laughing at us.

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