Texas Governor Rick Perry recently joined the race for the White House to the chagrin of the Democratic National Committee and with well-wishes of Republican conservatives and Tea Party coalitions nationwide.
His front-runner status comes at a price. Perry has the highest prison population in America. African-American males are the number one incarcerated group in this demographic. In fact, if Texas were a country, as Perry has often erroneously postulated, it would have the highest incarceration rate in the world. Despite adding more than 100,000 new prisoners in the past decade, Texas' crime rate has declined slower than any state in the union.
Consider this: Texas has the largest percentage of minimum-wage laborers (those making $7.25 or less), which allows him to perpetuate the myth that the Lone Star State is number one in job growth.
Texas ranks 47th in the nation with regard to its expenditures on public education. Texas ranks number one in the nation for levels of harmful toxic chemicals released into the air and water.
It is time for all Americans, Democrats and Republicans, to fight back when extremist candidates, like Rick Perry, rise to the level of the national spotlight with lies, half-truths, distortion of President Obama's record and outright deception. The United States of America deserves better!
Stanley G. Buford
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