A collection of civil rights buttons
For strange reasons many people who push for Civil Rights violate the fundamental civil right of the individual and attack the only system in human history that creates civil rights in a just and equal manner, Capitalism. Look at the modern Civil Rights movement and then close your jaw once you realize that they are all associated with socialism and progressivism, two ideologies that revoke personal choice and freedom and demand on submission to the state or to the “collective good”.
The fundamental flaw with modern liberalism is the violation of the individual as a free person who is able to live their life as they see fit. Civil rights groups fight not for the freedom of the man or woman, but for the freedom of the gender, the race, the language, the class, the whatever. The individual women, or members of the race, or speakers of the language or members of the class are abandoned into a collective maw that swallows them whole and will willingly sacrifice a few for the “Greater good”.
Capitalism, these activists say, is all about the greed of the industrial class, (Marxists would use the term Bourgeoisie, which if you read Marx are the factory owners and thanks to the spread of the stock market and invested retirement funds includes nearly 60% of the American public and many business employees have easy access to buy ownership in the company they work for making them Bourgeoisie themselves and not the hapless proletariat. ) This capitalistic greed some how deprives the “Workers” of their fair share, (ignoring that employees are often the number one cost of any business meaning they are getting paid quite a bit of the revenue) and also that the leadership class is taking unfair amounts of payment. (again ignoring that the CEO often works 90 hours a week, no vacations, and all those fancy jet and golf trips are working vacations. Also Executives are more likely to go to jail if there is wrong doing rather than the rank and file employees because they should know better.)
What is lost on many liberals is the fact that capitalism is economic freedom. Two people meet and agree upon a price and a product. Each side gets something out of the deal, no compulsion, no inequality, no force. Two people trade, two people profit. This profit encourages people to produce more, more production equals more profit. More production isn’t the only avenue to wealth, superior production or superior marketing can also create profit. In capitalism there is a native drive to make things better (not just in business but in all aspects of life) because better is more profitable. Look at Lamborghini and Ford, two car companys that sell to two different niches. They both make profit but do so in very different ways. The free market allows both to survive while a socialist state would outlaw Lamborghini as unfair to the masses. Why should some people get fancy cars? they might ask.
Capitalism allows poor people to provide goods and services and make a profit. They earn more and more money and cease being poor. They rise up. This is overshadowed by the fact that rich people also earn more and more money and become more rich. Many liberals will cry and moan over the “income gap” which has absolutely no bearing on economic health. We can show this with a simple analogous example. There is a healthy weight person sitting next to a fat person. Clearly there is an eating gap. Is the healthy weight person becoming malnourished when the fat person gains 50 pounds? No, of course not. Lower income people are not being hurt when higher income people have more than they do. The idea that pushes the badness of the “income gap” is based on the zero sum game idea of wealth, that there is a finite amount of wealth and when the rich have more everyone else has less. This is untrue. Wealth is not limited. As the rich have gained 20% the poor have gained 50%, no one has lost. Everyone has gained. But 20% of a million is a lot more in real numbers than 50% of 50,000. But this is what happens when liberals abuse pie charts. They like to see what percentage people play and when the rich have a larger percent of the pie, they ignore that the pie itself is much much larger. It’s all about forcing people to be the same to liberals.
What does all this capitalism have to do with civil rights? Historically equality of political rights was forced upon society by people of economic means. In the USA we have a history with gender discrimination, racial discrimination, and general cultural discrimination. The American colonists inherited English xenophobia and ethnocentrism which was complied by a century and a half of isolationism. We are a land of immigrants and were made so kicking and screaming all the way. Even Ben Franklin in the 18th century opined how the Germanic peoples in Pennsylvania would never assimilate. (they make up the cultural foundation for a majority of white people in the USA now.) Add to that the history of Slavery, propaganda used to justify taking land from the Indians, anti Hispanic (and anti catholic) history, and the anti Asian history we acquired during the gold rush.
All of these groups that have pushed for civil rights have done so because of the capitalist system. Members of these groups worked through the system, even when forced into their special segregated corner of it, such as Jim Crow South and the segregation in the American south west of Hispanic peoples. At this time I have no examples of Hispanic economic growth until the United Farm Workers and Cesar Chavez, but for African Ameicans I point to Sarah Breedlove and Maggie Lena Walker who both were able to be economic tycoons (and women) in a very segregated south. They rose up and were not alone.
Economic freedom exists even when social and political oppression reigns. This is the beauty of capitalism. With enough economic freedom wealth can be accumulated and support systems for political rights can be put into place. As soon as African Americans started establishing themselves in reconstruction and post reconstruction situations they began to organize for political rights. They could not have done that with out the economic freedom to initially amass wealth.
in 1848 the Seneca falls convention was held and the women’s movement had a big kick off. Over the next fifty years women slowly made more economic and social gains that allowed them to push for political rights by the turn of the century. Those economic gains were the foundation for the 19th amendment and all state laws allowing women to vote running up to that.
in the 1950s and 1960s we see the greatest example of civil rights activity. It wasn’t the first but it was the biggest and it was televised making it more memorable. These happened after a hundred years of economic growth of African Americans and women. Key to this is world war two and the massive economic boom that happend in the post war era. Blacks and Women had access to good jobs during the war and they realized they could force society to accept them. Capitalism (even in its FDR ruled deformed shape) had lead the way. Capitalism was about making products and serving the customer, the industrialists needed labor and women and blacks were the only ones around. Desire to produce trumped sexism and racism. That in turn gave economic power to blacks and women they had never had before. When that was taken away in 1946 to return to the status quo it left a bad taste in their mouths and that lead to the civil rights movement. Russia had a similar economic buildup, but no capitalism, thus no civil rights movement.
Capitalism is the enemy of liberalism because liberalism is devotion to the group and the state. Civil rights is not about black people, Hispanic people, women, it is about individuals having the rights of everyone else.