There's No Other Way to Say It: Minimum Wage Laws Are Racist

Minimum Wage Laws

Following the lead of  several trodden upon, yet Democrat-controlled municipalities, Washington, D.C., recently approved a bill raising the minimum wage to fifteen dollars an hour by 2025. This move has been hailed by leftists as a triumph for equality and the little guys.

Except no one wants to talk about how the new law is racist. Minimum wage laws were invented by racists to keep minorities down, and current minimum wage laws further disenfranchise those in our society who are already disenfranchised.

To help understand, a brief history lesson is in order. At the risk of wandering off topic, this brief history lesson will also serve to demonstrate why many leftists don’t want the universities under their progressively oppressive thumbs teaching history. Their entire program would have its rotten, totalitarian heart exposed if students were allowed to see how unkindly history looks upon the leftist agenda.

If, for example, burgeoning leftists learned that the minimum wage was first instituted in British Columbia in 1925 in order to price immigrants from Japan out of the lumber industry’s job market, would they begin to question the validity of their leftist ideology? And that inconvenient truth only foreshadows the racism inherent in the origins of minimum wage laws in the United States.

The migration of African-Americans to the industrial centers of the North brought a host of competent, hardworking laborers to bustling factories. Those laborers, of course, were black. This didn’t sit well with either the white factory workers or many of their white bosses. With the backing of business owners as well as the labor unions controlled by whites, a racist Congress passed the Davis-Bacon Act of 1931. The Act’s sole purpose was to force African-Americans out of the job market.

Over the course of the first few decades of the twentieth century, country after country enacted minimum wage laws as a means to price minorities, including women, out of the workforce. Some of the biggest and most vocal supporters of minimum wage laws were eugenists, especially the racist and classist Sidney Webb. Minimum wage laws are racist in origin and have a racist objective.

Unfortunately, the agenda of early twentieth century leftists has proven effective; minimum wage laws are still bearing racist fruit today. Specifically, low-skilled minorities are being priced out of the job market. As small business owners are forced to pay a higher wage than their employees produce, employers are often forced to cut staff. A story published by BET in 2011 highlighted the negative effect that minimum wage hikes have on black teens.

Another report, published by the American Legislative Exchange Council, unpacks several studies on the impact of minimum wage hikes. ALEC reports, “The bottom line is that someone must pay for the costs associated with an increased minimum wage. Often, because a business cannot pay these costs, they are paid for by the individuals the minimum wage is intended to help — low-skilled, undereducated individuals – as they lose out on job opportunities.” Later, the report breaks it down even further and delivers the sobering news that “a 10 percent increase in the minimum wage decreases minority employment by 3.9 percent, with the majority of the burden falling on minority youth whose employment levels will decrease by 6.6 percent.”

History is not kind to minimum wage laws as it uncovers racist supporters with racist objectives. Recent economic studies reveal the negative impact that minimum wage increases have on minorities. During an era when leftists are calling for any and all symbols of racism, real and imagined, to be denounced and torn down, leftists are still proudly advocating for racist minimum wage increases. This seeming contradiction within leftist ideology speaks far more loudly than leftists are willing to admit. They can deny the obvious for only so long before broader society is going to begin to wonder: “If minimum wage laws are known to have racist origins and have been proven to have a negative impact on minorities, doesn’t that make the supporters of a minimum wage increase racists?” The answer to that question is obvious.