I’m always counting the number of construction cranes when I have my monthly visit to Washington DC. If you haven’t been there recently, check out the southeast section near the Nationals baseball stadium. Business is pretty good in Washington DC and if you didn’t know, a good percentage of the wealthiest counties in the United States surround the nation’s capital. We continue to hear our economy is doing well, and we’ve avoided the “great recession,” thanks to President Obama’s economic policies. I continue to illuminate the point that over his tenure, our average annualized GDP growth has been about 2.1 percent — that folks is anemic, and we cannot consider that to be the new normal.
Yep, some folks will point to the Dow Jones Industrial average as a bright spot but those numbers reflect an artificial economy based on the whims of Federal Reserve Chairman Janet Yellin.
We know about the explosion of Americans on food stamps, and recently I did an op-ed piece addressing their use by our men and women in uniform. Further, the growth of Americans in poverty is staggering.
However, there’s a new assessment that’s absolutely disturbing and mind-numbing. As reported by CNSNews, “The number of homeless students is steadily rising in this country, up 38.44 percent since the 2009-10 school year, based on data submitted by state and local education agencies, including those in the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.
The U.S. Education Department says 1,301,239 homeless students were enrolled in the nation’s public schools in the 2013-14 school year, the most recent year for which numbers are available.
The greatest growth in the most recent school year was seen in preschool-aged children and ninth grade students.
However, there’s another disturbing fact hidden in these numbers.
The nation’s public schools (including D.C. and Puerto Rico) are required by law to provide all children with equal access to education at the elementary and secondary levels, regardless of their immigration status, but the Education Department does not categorize homeless students based on whether they are in the country legally or illegally.
However, high-immigration states such as California, New York and Texas have the largest numbers of homeless students, while Wyoming, Vermont and South Dakota have some of the lowest numbers, based on data compiled for the Education Department by the National Center for Homeless Education.
Notably, Tennessee’s population of homeless students more than doubled year-to-year in 2013-14, increasing 107.15 percent to 29,663 — the largest percentage increase of all the states. As President Obama noted in December 2014, “Nashville’s got one of the fastest-growing immigrant populations in the country.”
On the opposite end of the scale, Alabama recorded a 35 percent year-to-year drop in homeless students in 2013-14 (to 19,266). In 2011, Alabama passed one of the strictest immigration laws in the country. Although HB 56 was largely rejected by the courts, it reportedly accounted for an exodus of illegal aliens.
The number of homeless children should be zero, but the first thing we need to do is close our borders, stem illegal immigration and stop providing so many incentives for people to come here illegally and remain.
But neither should we have homeless American children. Instead of worrying about force-feeding unpopular foods to school kids — and penalties for not conforming — the Obama administration should be rebuilding this economy so our children have a roof over their heads. And I mean a place of residence they can call their own, not Section 8 housing, and not government schemes like Carter’s Community Reinvestment Act, which ignited the 2008 mortgage-backed financial crisis.
If our economy was healing, then explain why the number of homeless students is growing? If we were indeed instituting policies to grow small businesses and return production and manufacturing to America, perhaps we’d have moms and dads that could at least go out and find their own domiciles. And as the Obama administration decimates our military and puts more of our men and women out of the military, what will be their fate?
This is happening on Obama’s watch, so spare me the “Bush Derangement Syndrome.” This comes from the same Barack Obama who cancelled the DC school voucher program. So not only does Obama take away the opportunity for young minority children to get a quality education, he’s created an economic environment where the future of our America and our children are suffering from homelessness.
This isn’t about another “gubmint” program, but rather the tax and regulatory policies that spur on economic empowerment and growth — not economic enslavement, dependency, and the expansion of the welfare state. How do we expect these children to focus on getting an education when they don’t even have a place to call home?
When I read this report, I just shook my head and reflected back to my days growing up in the inner city of Atlanta on Kennesaw Avenue. Every one of us on that street lived in a home, only two homes were not a two-parent household. In just my 55 years, look at what has transpired. That is about the failures of government policies that seem intent on destroying the opportunities particularly in our inner cities. There’s more despondency, dependency, destitution, and overall decline in the areas of family, education, and small business entrepreneurship.
I believe that the wise Benjamin Franklin said it best, “I am for doing good to the poor, but…I think the best way of doing good to the poor, is not making them easy in poverty, but leading or driving them out of it. I observed…that the more public provisions were made for the poor, the less they provided for themselves, and of course became poorer. And, on the contrary, the less was done for them, the more they did for themselves, and became richer.”