Listen To You Tell Me Texas Friday 12/5/14
Two grand jury decisions in two weeks, both involving white police officers and black suspects in which the black suspects died, have served to re-open old wounds and incite simmering passions.
Among many on the left, many in the mainstream media (but I repeat myself) and among those in what can only be called the “racism industry,” the deaths of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri and Eric Garner in New York – both at the hands of police – serve as prima facie evidence of racism that remains unabated a half century after the passage of the Civil Rights Act.
To hear race hustlers like Al Sharpton tell it, the streets of cities all over America are patrolled by white police officers who will use any excuse to abuse or kill a black man. This assertion feeds the narrative that racism explains why black households lag behind white households in every economic measure.
Throwing the penalty flag on such speciousness risks sputtering outrage and personal attack from certain portions of the black community and from liberal quarters such as the Washington and New York commentariat.
I’m throwing the flag anyway.
To the extent that white racism lingers in America, that lingering now has little to do with the plight of millions of young black men and women. The disproportionately high unemployment among young blacks, the disproportionate dependence on government assistance and the disproportionately high rates of black incarceration are not the result of the white racism that characterized the 1950s.
Unlike 1964, when I was 10 years old, the “N-word” today is unacceptable in polite conversation. I would not be able to find and neither would you a movie theater or restaurant or hotel or sporting venue or department store where even the tiniest glimmer of a second thought is given to serving black customers.
The election of a black mayor or congressman has long since ceased being newsworthy.
A second black president is inevitable.
As much as rich white liberals, so-called “civil rights leaders” and elite members of the media would have you believe otherwise, the troubles facing many young black adults today are largely the result of self-inflicted wounds.
Sky-high dropout rates, high rates of drug use and the catastrophe of fatherlessness that has come to define black life in America – are all much more to blame for the poor economic prospects facing young black men and women than the dying embers of 20th century white racism.
Irrespective of the color of your skin or the obstacles placed in your way by the circumstances of your birth, success in life derives only from a firm belief in the power of personal responsibility and a keenly-felt duty of self help.
Only when that belief takes hold in the majority of black households will the disparities between white and black economic achievement — and the resulting resentments and distrust — begin to dissipate.
If Reverend Al Sharpton were anything other than the shameless hustler that he is, that’s the gospel he would be preaching.