How to Care about the Disadvantaged

by | Jul 27, 2020

You may be in the presence of mere virtue-signalers if they:

  • wring their hands about police brutality without ever calling for repeal of all victimless-crime laws, which create a poisonous dynamic between police and public precisely because the conduct being policed is consensual for each party to the illegal transactions;
  • bemoan the lack of growing black-family wealth without calling for the elimination of Social Security, which imposes a regressive tax to confiscate savings that would otherwise be heritable by the savers’ children;
  • lament the inadequate economic mobility of people in minority communities without condemning occupational licensing, which prohibitively raises the cost of entry into many kinds of work;
  • condemn the inadequate economic mobility of people in minority communities without opposing zoning and other land-use controls, which inflate the price of housing in areas with superior economic opportunities;
  • decry the sad state of education for minority children without demanding parental choice in an entrepreneurial free market in schools;
  • denounce minority unemployment without acknowledging that the legislated minimum wage kills jobs for people with the least skills and makes the surviving jobs more onerous than before.

About Sheldon Richman

Sheldon Richman is the executive editor of The Libertarian Institute, senior fellow and chair of the trustees of the Center for a Stateless Society, and a contributing editor at Antiwar.com. He is the former senior editor at the Cato Institute and Institute for Humane Studies, former editor of The Freeman, published by the Foundation for Economic Education, and former vice president at the Future of Freedom Foundation. His latest books are Coming to Palestine and What Social Animals Owe to Each Other.
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