John Kennedy: We are sending too many kids to schools that are ‘failure factories’
Louisiana Senator discusses how to confront policing and race in the United States on ‘Fox News Primetime’
Sen. John Kennedy, R-La., joined “Fox News Primetime” Tuesday to respond to the death of Daunte Wright at the hands of police in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota.
KENNEDY: Here’s my perspective: Unlike some of my colleagues, I do not believe that America is a racist nation. We are not perfect, but I think we are good. We have racists in our country, just like everyplace else. There are people in our country, there are people all over the world, that are going to judge you and not like you because of the color of your skin. There are others who are going to judge me, think they know everything they need to know about me, because of the color of my skin, but I don’t think that’s most Americans and I don’t think that’s most cops in America.
Without order, there is no justice. We can’t have a society without order, and we have decided to hire law enforcement officials to maintain order. We hire Whites, Blacks, Browns, men, and women to maintain order. Many of our law enforcement agencies are majority-minority. If you decide, just like you want to judge someone solely by the color of the skin, if you want to make a pejorative judgment about a cop — I’ll put it this way: If you hate cops just because they are cops, you don’t know a thing about them. The next time you get in trouble call a crackhead.
Now, having said that, what we are really talking about here is the relationship between crime and race. Let’s just cut to the chase. It is a statistical fact that more men than women commit crimes, just as it is a statistical fact that more younger people than older people commit crimes. We have racial minorities and ethnic groups in America that have higher crime rates. Why? Poverty. But that doesn’t tell you anything. How do we stop poverty? I don’t know a single person who is poor who wants to be poor.
I can give you two things we can do to reduce the crime rate among all demographic groups, but especially among African-American youths. Number one, we are sending two million of our young people to schools that are failure factories. If I were king for a day, here is what I would do: I would turn to all of the parents of our kids below a certain socioeconomic level, of all races, and I’d say, “Here is the money that the state is putting up to pay for the school you are going to. I’m giving you the money, not the school. Use it anywhere you want to. You want to go to a charter school, go. You want to go to a private school, here’s the money.” We have to have more freedom of choice and more competition in education. Number two, family formation. Nobody wants to talk about it. I’m not saying a single parent can’t be a good mom or dad, but a child who grows up in a single-parent family is six times more likely to grow up in poverty than a child that grows up in a two parent family. And that is just a fact.
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