Thursday, April 12, 2007

In defense of Sharpton


Forget what all those posers and playas' are are saying. I understand you, Al Sharpton.

I understand why you called for and got Don Imus’ Stetson-wearin' head. Calling a group of female college athletes “nappy headed hos” is wrong. It’s not nice to pick on a disadvantaged class, particularly when that class is part of a minority too stupid to understand the word “irony.”


If it makes you feel any better, today’s guilt-ridden white liberals are just as stupid since, apparently, they don’t understand irony either. Not that it matters. At this point they're probably too weak to try, having been whipped into slave-like submission by you and that other self-appointed Grand High Negro Jesse Jackson.

Of course, like the KKK, every mindless group needs a leader, and if black people are going to blindly follow you, who am I to judge?

I’m just Whitey. And like I said, I understand.

I understand that it’s easier for you to beat up on Don Imus and declare victory than it is to have an honest dialogue with someone like Bill Cosby. Remember him? That other black guy whose success blazed the very trail that has allowed your smug, puffy face to be all over the news lately?

In 2004, here’s what Cosby told a group of black parents:

"Let me tell you something, Your dirty laundry gets out of school at 2:30 every day, it's cursing and calling each other [the N-word] as they're walking up and down the street. They think they're hip. They can't read. They can't write. They're laughing and giggling, and they're going nowhere."

Remember what you said about that, Al? You said you had a “mixed reaction” to the remarks of a man who encouraged blacks to clean up their own acts by eliminating the denigration of their women, the fuck-and-go mentality of their men and the idea that being education is only for white folks.

If you can’t get behind the message that blacks should educate themselves, support their children and respect their women the irony (there’s that word again) is that you’re condemning black females to be hos. And not just in theory, either. With no education, the woman impregnated by the drug-dealing nigga’ whose resume includes prison time and three other nappy-headed bastards may have little choice but to turn to prostitution to support her own.

People like that have hard lives. Sad lives. Miserable lives. On the other hand, broken and hopeless people make damn good followers, don't they. That’s why stupid, uneducated white people still join the KKK. Hating others makes them feel empowered and keeps them from focusing on their hick, trailer park existence. When some Bubba comes along and offers them false hope and a chance to be respected, they take the bait. Note that the KKK leader never tells them how to really help themselves. He won’t tell them to clean up their yard, take literacy lessons, find a job and get to a dentist. He just tells them that if they stay in the fight and keep hatin', one day life will be glorious. They only need to follow him.

And what works for the KKK Grand Dragon also works for the Grand High Negroes, as you well know. That’s why you won’t condemn the rappers who have reduced young black women to a pair of gyrating buttocks. It’s why you won't criticize rich black singers who remind young poor blacks over and over that they are just niggas and hos. It’s why you have “mixed feelings” about Cosby’s message that black parents make education - not expensive tennis shoes - a priority. Educated, self-respecting people wouldn’t follow you. They wouldn’t have to.

Living in the south, I understand you because I’ve seen the white face of those black oppressors in the KKK. Now I’ve seen the other face of that oppression - the black face. It was on CNN and FOX today and it was yours. The only difference was that you weren’t wearing a sheet.

Disclaimer: If anything I wrote here made black readers feel offended or oppressed, please realize I’m simply trying to help Rev. Sharpton. And really, what's good for him is good for you so Yo, shut up.

49 comments:

Anonymous said...

I think what Imus said was awful. But I think it's been blown out of proportion. And the criticism does seem one sided. I remember on one episode of "The View" Rosie O'Donnell made fun of how Asians talk and I don't remember anyone saying a thing about that.
God Bless You,
Margaret

mitzibel said...

Wonder of wonders, I think Ann Coulter's voice has actually been that of reason in this debacle. She makes the point that the despicableness of his statement is not the words used (if everyone who used those words got fired, Chris Rock would have had a very short career), but the fact that he was picking on a group of young women who had not put themselves in the public sphere (like if he'd called, say, Dave Chappelle nappy-headed), but some girls who worked their asses off and just wanted to play ball and get an education. He pulled "innocents" into the media name-calling game, and *that's* what was classless.

Anyway, I loved your little rant. But it's a good thing we pandered to the Reverend, bad things happen when we don't *cough*Crown Heights*cough**cough*

Suspect said...

Ooh, wise beyond my years.

Still sexually frustrated though :(

Oh well. The good with the bad, I guess.

You've seen a KKKlaner in uniform? How come?

Morgan said...

I completely agree, Mitzibel. The girls had every right to be offended. But the only one Imus should have apologized to was them, NOT Al Sharpton. When Al Sharpton came looking for an apology, Imus would have been better off to kick him right in the nuts.

I disagree with Coulter over her comparison of the Reutgers players to Paula Jones and Linda Tripp. Jones and Trip, in light of their respective scandals, were natural fodder.

But overall, I think we're giving too much weight to verbal offenses. You'd think there was nothing else worse than hurt feelings. I swear, we have become a pathetic people No wonder people want to blow us up. We're so shallow, stupid and self absorbed we equate hurt feelings with some kind of suffering.And as you point out, some think the suffering is worthy of riots and violence. Puleaze.

Morgan said...

"You've seen a KKKlaner in uniform? How come?"

I'm a journalist, remember? I've had the misfortune to meet a number of white supremacist *and* two bonafide KKK members.

More disturbingly, the two KKK members I met outside of work. One was an elderly small town physician who waxed nostalgic about his "good old days" as a KKK member. The other was a toothless redneck who said his proudest moment came when his slow-developing two-year-old said his first word: nigger.

The white supremacists/separatists I met because I did arguments on their run-ins with the law. Being anti-"guvmint", one threatened the life of a county official after he learned he couldn't get land where he held outdoor services for his right wing religion designated as a church. (He was hoping to dodge the taxes he had to pay on the land.)

The other was a seperatist who owned the right-of-way into a neighborhood but refused to let the post office cross it to deliver mail to the residents because he considered the mail carrier a government agent.

Both of these men, by the way, were brilliant and well read. But sadly, they were also dangerously insane.

If you live in the south, you inevitably run into these types.

Per your other comment: "Still sexually frustrated though :("

You're what? 16 or 17. You're supposed to be sexually frustrated, silly. :-)

Morgan said...

Margaret,
You watch "The View?" Time for Intervention. :-)

Anonymous said...

I'm curious about why you think the Klanners were insane? The implication from your description is that their insanity stems from either trying to game the tax system or stop government agents (postal workers are techincally agents of government, probably not the kind that would be trying to kill him though).
Was there any other reason you thought they were insane?
--Invid
PS - I thought your statement to Sharpton is excellent

Morgan said...

That's a fair question, Invid. Note, though, that I didn't say the Klanners were insane. They were just ignorant rednecks who felt the only way they could elevate themselves was by stepping on Darkie.

The insane ones were the separatists I met. Not all separatists, or anti-government types, are insane. Randy Weaver wasn't, and you'll note that he never went looking for a fight; the fight came looking for him. We all know the outcome of that story.

The insane separatists are the ones like the guy who owned the right away to the ill-developed neighborhood and threatened to kill the mailman if he crossed without permission. For months, the people who lived there had to go to the P.O. to get their mail.

The other guy, upon finding out he couldn't get a tax exemption on his land (jokingly dubbed the Church of the AK-47 by me and my colleagues) immediately threw diplomacy out the window and began to send rambling, scripture-filled threatening letters to the tax assessor.

Both these men were very well-read, very articulate. But no reasonable people could argue that their paranoia was sane. They were Brilliant Nuts.

I hope this lends some clarification and I'm glad you liked my rant against Sharpton.

My poor sister is apoplectic. She's a major Imus fan and can barely do her job today, she's so distraught.

CJ said...

Is it wrong to say that post was so brilliant and spot on that it actually made me sexually excited?

Morgan said...

Uh, actually CJ, yes. You're free to agree with me, but you're not free to agree....on me.

Roland said...

If you had more readers, Rev. Al would come after you and get your blog removed.

I'd still find a way to read your blog, somehow. However would I have found Landover Baptist without you?

Morgan said...

Roland,

Reverend Al will never be able to get us of us uppity whites, if we start speaking up that is.

Even if one person reads this and questions that black racist windbag I'll be happy.

You've reminded me I need to redo my page links as well. I just love Landover Baptist. Did I tell you that when I was a staff writer at the paper I wrote a story that got picked up by AP and caught the attention of none other than Betty Bowers, world's best Christian? She emailed me personally about the piece I did and signed it, "so close I know the thread count of Jesus' loincloth, Betty Bowers."

Of all the achievements I ever made at the paper, I still consider that email my proudest moment.

thimscool said...

Speaking of links, I note that you have taken to publicly shaming me...

I may need to fill out some content. But it won't happen until after my trip to Egypt and Italy in June. Life is full throttle.

mitzibel said...

Betty Bowers emailed you personally? I am *seething* with jealousy right now. What was the article about?

Sadly, much of the extreme racial purity movement does have a lot of Brilliant Nuts. Luckily, they are only the most vocal minority in their group; I was recently linked/targeted by the Vanguard News Network, and aside from two commenters arguing over whether Ashkanazis were really Jews, the most intelligent thing that was said was, "Any man who couldn't make that c^%t for a kike is no better than a house goy." In fact, Trey's getting a Tshirt screen printed with "House Goy" across the front. They did seem to sober up at the realization that I own as many guns as most of them.
So they get mentioned in my prayers, mostly in the form of a request that the Brilliant Nuts stay too busy arguing with each other over whether the Holocaust was a lie or actually perpetrated by Jews to join forces and start churning out propoganda that has real impact.

Andrea said...

Hey, I'm jealous of your Betty Bowers connection too. That signature was awesome.

Morgan said...

Luke, I have changed how you're described in my blog roll now. I think the "tease" description is apt, especially given that you've breezed through here without sharing your opinion of the Imus dust-up.
Dish, man!!!

Morgan said...

So Mitzibel, does that make you a "Goy Toy?" Oh yes, there is nothing like having extremists pissed at you to make life interesting. I once made a joke about Confederate Civil War re-enactors in a column I was writing at the time...some innocent little comment about how the south lost and should "get over it." For two weeks after our paper was under fire. Our editors were harassed and I was forced to defend my southern-ness, which I tried to do by emailing my detractors pictures of my pet mule (I really did have one) and shots of myself in cut-off jeans shooting cans off of logs. At the end, the best they could do was label me "Yankee-minded." Wouldn't it be neat to just get all the extremists in a big stadium and let them have some final Death Match. The Vanguard News guys vs. the KKK vs. the civil war re-enactors vs. the Rainbow Coalition. I'd pay to see that.

Per the Betty Bowers email, both you Mitzibel and you, Andrea, will love this: I did an article about a pianist hired by a Baptist church (she wasn't a member) to play on Sundays. They found out later that she also played for a downtown gay bar and fired her for her "sin." The story I did was small and tongue and cheek but it was picked up by AP and ended up as a blurb in the Advocate. I think that's where the Landover people found it and a few days later I got an email from Betty Bowers praising the church for firing the pianist.

I held onto it forever but misplaced it a couple of years ago. If I ever find it, I'll post it in its entirety. It was the funniest thing I've ever read and as long as I live I will never, ever forget her closing line.

thimscool said...

The nail that stands up gets hammered.

Morgan said...

No one's going to hammer you. I've yet to hear a decent explanation of how firing Imus is going to help blacks. Especially when their own "leaders" don't seem to want remedies that will really help the black community to develop the respect it really needs - self respect. 'Cause that doesn't come from hammering Whitey. It comes from being self-sufficient and not needing Whitey.

I am not kidding. If you have an angle on this that will help me not be furious over what happens, I'd love to hear it. Especially since you're usually one of the most reasoned voices around here.

thimscool said...

I was speaking about my having commented on the link in the first place.

I agree that “black people” seem to lack effective leadership. So do most groupings that you can identify culturally… It is a consequence of corporatism: you buy out the brightest bulbs, and leave the masses to the fate of choosing from small-minded power mongers, that can think of nothing better than to take up matters of protocol. It’s the same thing with the women’s movement, and every other ism. Hell, it’s the same thing with liberalism, conservatism, Democrats, Rebuplicans, and Baptivisits… Our “leaders” are inept; because the smartest bulbs were either bought in and/or they would never expose themselves to the fickle flame of public scrutiny.

Many great minds that would have cleaned up a neighborhood (or a state, or a country) are stuck in a mode of: Work your ass off until you only have the energy to relax in one of the proscribed ways…

All the isms compete, and corporatism has evolved a critical advantage: Brain Drain, they call it. I know that Suspect knows what I am talking about. Of course, these days, the brains don’t necessarily need to change physical locations… just the state of their minds.

There. That’s my answer to what I consider an irrelevant tangent taken by you and most commentators, about the scandalous Imus matter.

The Imus situation is pretty simple: people are chattering about whether they should fire the fry chef because he burnt the bacon. Whatever… fire his ass. Good. He’ll end up in an even more lucrative situation, perhaps on Fox.

Realistically, the corporations that pulled their advertising dollars are guilty by their own admission for having supported the program in the past while Imus railed against women, jews, blacks, etc. It’s the same old shit, except this time he picked a target that “wasn’t in the public space”… which basically means that the glamour people better watch their ass if they try to sit in the audience.

What do you want me to say? It’s friking boring.

Morgan said...

Wow. That's a lot to chew on, Luke. Really good points, although I'm not entirely sure that every minority who walks away from the masses has sold out. Cooperating within society while retaining pride and a cultural identity is possible. Look at the Asians who have come over here. They don't know the language. They don't know the culture. They often arrive with no money. And yet the are able to achieve and even surpass the people they started out working for.
I think it's the people who take individual responsibility, rather than beat their heads against a wall trying to drag an unwilling group of slackers along with the, who are ism-resistant. They have no need for 'isms.

But are they selfish sell-outs? I don't think so. I think blacks like Sharpton and Jackson hate the Jews and Asians for this very reason. It's why Jackson makes hymie-town comments and Sharpton rags on "diamond merchants" and "China-men." Jews and Asians have proven that they don't need anyone and spend their time working rather than waiting to be offended.

I think that what you say here is an extension of the hook that blacks use to keep fellow blacks from becoming educated. Get good grades? Stop that. You're acting white. Move out of the ghetto because of drugs and crime? Stop that. You're acting white.

I dunno, Luke. If I wanted to keep blacks down, I might be tempted to use the same argument you have....it just really seems unfair to say that anyone who moves past a group that seems disinterested in helping themselves is somehow part of a Brain Drain. Maybe they just want a better life for their family --a live they don't see in their own community.

Per your Imus comment, you are right that the corporations were hypocritical. But I think Imus' audience was small enough that in the end he was deemed a throwaway easily sacrificed to the PC cause.

He was obviously stupid and cruel to attack a bunch of college girls who'd done nothing to deserve it. He only compounded the problem when he apologized to Al Sharpton before apologizing to them. A meeting held after so much pressure will always leave questions as to whether he really was sorry about he did.

Anonymous said...

African-Americans have forgotten what MLK was preaching. He taught self respect; respect as a community of individuals working toward a common goal. He taught self-sacrifice: getting arrested in a protest against inequity, being beaten or attacked by dogs in defense of basic human rights. He taught that becoming a public victim as an example of the appalling behavior of the racist system would ultimately, fundamentally change that system.
Unfortunately, the only part of MLK’s message that has survived (and warped to a terrible degree) is the public victimization of the black people. It is the easiest rallying cry for African-American leaders, and so it is used most often. It is simpler to incite outrage against an individual who says “nigger” and state, “He is the cause of our suffering.” It is simpler to lay blame for all one’s woes outside one’s own community. It is simpler to state that the rules are unfair us so we won’t play the game. Simpler, but ultimately childish, and self-defeating.
The solution will not be a popular one. It calls for introspection. It calls for a realignment of priorities and of values. It calls for a new generation of role models to come forward. It is a sad state of affairs when the only people black children can look up to are sports figures, rappers, and erstwhile preacher/politicians. When was the last time a positive message came from one of these people; a message that is more than lip service and platitudes? I for one cannot remember.
On a final thought, there was a time when segregation was forced on African-Americans. That time is passed. The segregation that exists now is purely self-inflicted. I’m not suggesting that there aren’t still racists practicing their hate. However, there are no longer laws oppress black people, and the vast majority of society is sickened by racist acts. It seems that many black leaders and many African-Americans themselves want to keep blacks separate from the rest of society so they can continue to believe they are fighting the good fight. It is time to realize the rules of the game have changed and it’s now time to step up and play.

Morgan said...

It seems that many black leaders and many African-Americans themselves want to keep blacks separate from the rest of society so they can continue to believe they are fighting the good fight. It is time to realize the rules of the game have changed and it’s now time to step up and play.

You're exactly right, anon. And the point you raise about self-imposed segregation is entirely correct. It doesn't help that both blacks and whites encourage this. Just look at the treatment Obama's gotten. Sharpton has implied that because Obama has assimilated and appeals to whites that he's not "black" enough. It's like because he doesn't have an exclusively black following he's seen as a sell-out. And of course, there are plenty of whites like Thimscool who seem to think the same thing.

I think assimilation needs to be part of the goal, and the blacks need to stop associating it with forsaking their culture. As you point out, they need to rebuild their cultural foundation in the manner MLK intended it. It was an excellent point you made about how his message has been so corrupted.

I tell you who I'd like to see emerge as a new voice for the black community and that's Jason Whitlock, the sports writer. Here's a little of what he had to say on the controversy:

"If you compare Jesse and Al to Martin and Malcolm, and what those guys accomplished, it‘s an embarrassment. I don‘t understand how these black leader, how our black leaders, get these lifetime appointments, like they‘re Supreme Court justices. We need to vote them out and bring in new leadership. It‘s not 1965. The problems aren‘t the same as they were in 1965. It‘s 2007. Black people have a new set of problems. And we need some new leadership and people with new solutions. These guys are trying to drag us back into the 1940s and ‘50s."

Can I get an amen?

thimscool said...

"there are plenty of whites like Thimscool who seem to think the same thing."

You obviously enjoy fighting. I said no such thing, nor do I believe it.

Lack of a response to your earlier post does not imply that you have understood my point of view. Even if you did understand (which evidently you do not), I'd rather speak for myself, thanks.

I'm not biting.

Morgan said...

Here's what you said, Luke:

"So do most groupings that you can identify culturally… It is a consequence of corporatism: you buy out the brightest bulbs, and leave the masses to the fate of choosing from small-minded power mongers, that can think of nothing better than to take up matters of protocol."

Unless I'm wrong, what you're saying is that the prevailing powers lure away the brightest minorities, leaving a power vacuum to be filled by selfish idiots. And since a person can't be "bought out" without selling out, that's essentially what you've said here.

I wasn't fighting with you, merely disagreeing which you seem to thing is synonymous. I don't believe bright, successful blacks who've assimilated into the prevailing culture have "sold out," even by your definition. And it doesn't matter whether you "bite" or not since trying to deny what you've written would be a toothless rebuttal anyway.

But, hey, thanks for stopping by.

thimscool said...

“I wasn't fighting with you, merely disagreeing which you seem to thing is synonymous.”

Another plausibly deniable attempt to put words in my mouth, and to declare my intentions for me... How charming. Anyone who reads this blog knows that I can disagree without fighting… but I’m willing to mix it up for a good cause. I’m not sure I want to follow too far down this path you are blazing, because the amount of time and ink that would likely be spent is more than I can afford.

But since you succeeded in pissing me off, I may as well state my own opinions.

I agree with much of what you and anonymous have said. I think that black American culture is afflicted with some unusually self-deprecating tendencies. By way of contrast, immigrant blacks tend to follow the same path as other immigrant groups, and although they may meet with some racist obstructions, the corporatist America will ultimately welcome them into the fold and they will assimilate. So your point about Asians is a red herring.

The African American culture is the result of some difficult history. It’s not that the black community of today is as poor as immigrants… it is much worse than that. They are not only poor (typically) but they are saddled with an entrenched resentment and distrust of their surrounding culture, and the pathologies within their own culture that come from a history of poverty and abuse. That is a barrier to assimilation, and it exhibits itself in many twisted forms. But where and how did that cycle start? Why not blame those shiftless Native Americans for their high rates of alcoholism… What’s the heck is wrong with these people, anyway? Sheesh.

There is no comparison. Asian Americans, just like Irish Americans and Jamaican Americans, are a group without much of a grievance (comparatively), and while they may benefit from maintaining an ethnic community, they don’t have the problems of a black community that is struggling against a lot more negative inertia.

Since you brought up Obama, I would say that he has certainly embraced the corporatist system, and that is wise because he has to appeal to a much wider audience than the black community (which forms only a part of his roots). I just think that buying into (and being bought) by the system is not necessarily “selling out” unless you were a soldier in a cause that rejects the corporatist mindset. Obama never was, and neither are most blacks, Asians, whites, etc. So they can’t sell out, even if they are being bought.

I have no real opinion about Obama, since I haven’t really been following politics recently. I imagine that if he were elected it would help the African American community in the sense that it would demonstrate what they do not currently believe (in general): that black people have a chance in this society. That would be great, but it’s just another piece of evidence that America would welcome them into the corporatist fold if only they would stop murdering, robbing, and fornicating and play the game like normal assimilated people, right? So go Obama.. But a black president isn’t going to be some sort of panacea for the problems of black American culture.

Which brings me back to the part where I agree with you, Anon, and Mr. Whitlock. Better leadership is needed. Somebody needs to stand up and galvanize the community. Either blacks should work towards assimilation (as you put it), or they should rally around a more positive black identity. But that’s easier said than done.

When a black person does decide to embrace the larger corporatist culture, they are rejected by their potential followers for being “too white” or whatever. And they’ll be busy anyway with the 50-80 hour work week of most people in our country. So, he’ll cash out and let the others wallow in the bad attitude. Since corporatism is generally an anti-community approach, people that embrace it are ill equipped to really help in a meaningful way.

In the days before ownership was so grossly separated from the labor and the means of production, the hard worker would soon be the one employing his neighbors, rather than moving to the suburbs. So the followers would have good reason to respect those community leaders, and try to emulate or even outdo them.

It’s a terrible problem. But it is crass to say “Why can’t you just be like the Asians?” It is not all Sharpton’s fault.

There is my toothless rebuttal. I never called Osama a sell out, because I don’t believe he is one, unless he was an activist focused primarily on improving the black community. He can have whatever agenda and following he wants, and as long as he doesn’t imply that he is dedicating his efforts to improving the black community. He’s a presidential candidate, for God’s sake...

thimscool said...

"We refuse to be
What you wanted us to be;
We are what we are:
That's the way (way) it's going to be. You dont know!

You can't educate I
For no equal opportunity:
(talkin bout my freedom) talkin bout my freedom,
People freedom (freedom) and liberty!"

Morgan said...

Luke, I do agree that resentment and mistrust of whites is a justified part of black culture, but while it may be an obstacle, using it as an excuse does nothing but hurt African Americans.

As we become generations removed from slavery, see not only an expansion of rights for blacks but also a double standard and special privileges via affirmative action, it becomes harder to buy the fact that the overall culture's flaws can somehow still be blamed on what white folks did to them.

I think the Jews in Germany had as much a beef as blacks do. And had they mired themselves in victimhood following the Holocaust (which is more recent history) they might be still struggling and "led" by buffoons who only teach resentment and hate. They had every right to hate the Germans, after all. In 1933, there were 500,000 Jews in Germany. Twelve years later there were less than a tenth that number. But the worked rebuild lives and businesses and by the 1970's the Jewish community was thriving again.

Now you may say, "Well, but the oppressors had been overthrown." But tell me, please, how that's different than what's happen here when we've had a cultural overthrow of sorts in which the majority of people believes in a fair chance for all.

When you look at the ills of the black and Native Americans, at some point don't you ever ask, "At what point do I stop flagellating myself for what they've become?"

My forebears kept slaves. I can't help that. But even if offered a slave (and some days I could use one) I would politely decline because I don't agree with slavery. We are at a new time and a new era where everyone can achieve if they apply themselves, value education, take pride in their family and develop a work ethic.

Unfortunately, those aren't values the black community are embracing. They've chosen a culture of victimhood and leaders that preach its message. And those leaders - and some whites - are quickly tell them that to walk away from that Victimhood Culture and assimilate is selling out or acting "white."

Per your comments about how blacks who join the corporate culture abandon and leave other blacks to wallow in the mire of their victimhood, I think that is bullshit. Oprah Winfrey and Bill Cosby are two shining examples of African Americans who work tirelessly to provide opportunities to other blacks.

But the problem is they can't make them want it. Oprah Winfrey spent millions building a school in South Africa. Why there and not here? Because she said she got tired of trying to help people who didn't seem to care. So is she to blame for planting her seed where it will bear fruit?

Bill Cosby tried going around the country, trying to rally black parents to make education and family a priority. He was criticized for his remarks. By blacks.

And Winfrey and Cosby are far from alone, Luke. I know a number of examples here in my own area of successful blacks struggling to influence their community, communities they have NOT forsaken. They've started after school programs, small business co-ops, community watch programs, and neighborhood improvement coalitions.

Your picture of the black person who rejects his community by working 50-80 hour a week in corporate America is untrue and unfair. You need to get out more and meet some of the successful blacks in your own community who are trying to spread the message of self-reliance. You might be surprised at what you find.

CJ said...

It seems to me that if assimilating (working, obeying the law, etc.) means being able to provide for your family it should be a no-brainer to choose that assimilation over the victimhood that keeps some minorities mired in poverty. Sure we can look at blacks overall but ultimately responsibility lies with the individual and I have to wonder at a man man won't choose his own family's well-being over a culture that discourages progress because it's deemed as "too white." Now I agree with Luke that you can't really compare Asians to blacks because the blacks were drug over here but I think Morgan's example of the Jews proves that success means moving past anger and going on since the past can't be changed.
Decendants of African slaves were robbed of their culture and many now say it was a rich and progressive one. Not knowing much of African history I can't say. But if it's true, they should work on replicating that culture here by applying themselves, creating and forming strong family bonds with fathers who stick around long enough to share that history with their sons and daughters.

Morgan said...

CJ, I think you bring up a good point. Sure, it sucks that the African Americans feel the enslavement of their ancestors destroyed their culture. But now that they've achieved a level of influence and power in the nation that enslave them through civil rights legislation, celebrity and quotas, why not promote and exemplify what was best in that culture? Who's stopping them? You? Me? Luke?
Personally, I think the people - both blacks and whites - who are enabling them to use anger and resentment as an excuse for their continuing dysfunction are far more guilty that people like Cosby, Oprah and anonymous who encourage them them to take charge and reap the benefits of what's available.

thimscool said...

First of all, do you acknowledge my assertion that I do not think, nor did I write that Obama is a sellout? (Which is what I originally objected to.) Either you are guilty of putting words in my mouth, or you are calling me a liar, or you think that I am deluded. Which is it?

As for your counterexample of the Jews, you are comparing apples and oranges, or rather post-Nazi Germans and post-civil rights era Americans. Most significantly, you live under the flag of the government that committed and condoned genocide and slavery; the post-war-Germans notably were not still self identifying as the Third Reich. And whereas you live in a society that profited greatly from slavery and never made reparations, the German people were soundly defeated and punished for their crime, and bent over backwards to make reparations.

Moreover, the Jews were a tiny minority of Germany before and after the war. African Americans are 13% of our country. It was possible for the Germans to make reparations; but for America to pay only the slave-day prevailing wages, plus interest, to compensate the descendants of slaves, it would take four trillion dollars (which is a third of the GDP). We’d rather spend that money on fighting terrorists.

I am not saying that life is happy for the Jews, in Germany or anywhere, but the circumstance is drastically different for black Americans. There were many different African cultures that were enslaved, and they spoke many languages. Most of the African victims were enslaved at a young age, to increase their value, so that they had a very weak grip on their own culture. When they got to America, families were split up according to the labor needs of our ancestors. Woman from child, and the child would go where no one came from their tribe, and no one spoke their language. The Jews were liquidated in a most disturbing way. But consider the remnant culture… What was their educational cross section? Who did they know that could employ such skills? Given the choice to roll over and die, or pick up the pieces, they did what Jews do… they picked up the pieces, drew together as a community, and bravely rebuilt a new life.

So it is not just about the blacks feeling “victimized”, Morgan. There may just be real reasons that a troubled culture emerged from slavery and destitution, with no common language, no “Bible”, no industry, low-level skills, and rampant illiteracy. So while you cavalierly dismiss them as whiners, poor black people face a struggle that you and I will never really understand.

All of the traditional ways to heal such wounds are attacked by corporatism. The Church is losing its reach and grip. Globalism and subsidized shipping have made labor a cheap commodity. Education is funded based on counties, and “white flight” made bussing irrelevant. And the above average “winners” in this system are subjected to the buy-in principle I outlined above. All so that we can have highly liquid markets that maximize profit and promote the complete disconnect between people’s money and the responsibility of how it is used by those markets. Just don’t fuck with my portfolio.


When you look at the ills of the black and Native Americans, at some point don't you ever ask, "At what point do I stop flagellating myself for what they've become?"

I’m not flagellating myself. I don’t really support affirmative action. I don’t feel personally responsible for the actions of any of my ancestors or my government.

But if you look at your question in the context that I described above, it is the height of cultural arrogance.


We are at a new time and a new era where everyone can achieve if they apply themselves, value education, take pride in their family and develop a work ethic.

Yeah? What about this dude? Did you ever see the movie Citizen Ruth? Not everyone is built for success… not even here in Unicornicopia. Think of the many advantages that you gained by being born in the circumstance that you were born. I’m sure you had your problems, but I bet your momma wasn’t a crack addict, and your papa wasn’t incarcerated. The afflictions of the poor and hopeless are difficult to understand and acknowledge. Anyway, I reject your statement.


…those aren't values the black community are embracing. They've chosen a culture of victimhood and leaders that preach its message.

Hey, why don’t all you black people just shape up, damn it!


Per your comments about how blacks who join the corporate culture abandon and leave other blacks to wallow in the mire of their victimhood, I think that is bullshit.

Well, I will concede that a lot of great people have put in a lot of hard work. The problem is just enormous, and perhaps overwhelming. But I never said otherwise. I just commented, correctly, that because of the many strains imposed by corporatism on family, church, community, and country, that the black community has fewer tools to heal itself. The leaders you mentioned, Oprah and Bill Cosby, are TV stars. They may help immensely in their own way, but what is needed is for business to function better at a small local level, so that the important connection around town is the guy from your high school, rather than the McDonalds franchise officer for your precinct. But unfortunately the guy from your high school got promoted and moved to the west coast, and all his money is in the markets anyway.

[Oprah] got tired of trying to help people who didn't seem to care. So is she to blame for planting her seed where it will bear fruit?

Well, I don’t blame her, necessarily. I’m sure she did some good, and she is responsible for her own choices about her charitable monies. Good for her. But that doesn’t mean that the problem isn’t still here. And for you to say, “They just need to get their shit together”, is like turning your back on the child just born in the ghetto. It clearly isn’t her fault, but you’ve given up hope on the dregs of black society; so sorry, too bad.

Bill Cosby tried going around the country, trying to rally black parents to make education and family a priority. He was criticized for his remarks. By blacks.

Yeah. That sucks. He is right, but what is he gonna do about it? It is enough to just say: “Stop being uncivilized!”???


Your picture of the black person who rejects his community by working 50-80 hour a week in corporate America is untrue and unfair.

That is the picture you have construed from my words. It is not my picture. I don’t begrudge any specific person for joining the corporatist system. My parents did and it has benefited me immensely. But it is what it is.


You need to get out more and meet some of the successful blacks in your own community who are trying to spread the message of self-reliance.

Pfft. You mean like my cousins and my brother-in-law?

I’m all for self reliance, and the preaching thereof… as long as it isn’t used as a shield to protect someone’s fragile conscience.

Morgan said...

Luke, you originally said that corporatism "bought out" the brightest blacks away from their communities and later went on to assert that the hours they spent working left them little time to do anything to lift up their impoverished community. And now I'm supposed to cut Obama from the herd you lumped together? I don't understand your reasoning on this.

You wrote a lot but really the whole diatribe boils down to one point you keep coming back to:

You said: Hey, why don’t all you black people just shape up, damn it!

You meant it sarcastically, but I have a serious question for you, Luke. Would you please tell me what other option the black community has? I'm not arguing that they don't have a cultural beef, but I am arguing that they have nothing to lose and everything to gain by using their own grudge over long-broken slave chains to enslave *themselves* in poverty? Can't you even see that?

I used the Jews as an example because the ones left in Germany didn't let the Holocaust (and with apologies to you and Jesse Jackson but it *was* as terrible as slavery) become a seething rock of resentment around which they orbited.

What bothers me is that people like you who assume that blacks are just too stupid and damaged to follow the model of successful blacks who have blazed the trail. There is no reason why an individual black cannot, regardless of what you want them and us to believe. We have a black who could be president, for heavens sake. And it's not because he sold out, Luke, it's because he got a good education and worked hard to achieve his goals. He set goals anyone can set, and used the same system to achieve.

I don't think Oprah has turned her back on babies in ghettos by preaching self-reliance, either. You laughably spoke of how a person with a crack-addicted mama can't succeed but Oprah is a perfect example. She grew up poor, in a n abusive home.

My own childhood wasn't stellar; bad things happened to me and worse things happened to my sister. But rather than using those things as an excuse to fail, we took the lessons from our childhood and turned them into positives.

So are we just smarter than blacks? Is Oprah and any other black who overcomes the bonds of poverty some sort of mutant freak? Or is it possible that you are wrong, wrong, wrong and that blacks are not "fragile" as you would paint them but just as individually capable of success as anyone else?

"Getting over it" doesn't mean forgetting what happened, Luke. It means looking at where you are now and asking, "What will this anger gain me? Should I choose drugs or school? Should I choose gang or family? Should I abandon my young son and go impregnate another woman or should I raise him to be a man of substance."

These are choices, Luke, and blacks are as capable of whites of making the right ones.

If no black had ever made the right one, I'd buy your argument that they were just too damaged to do so. But blacks can succeed and you know it. The question is, will they make the choice, seeing that the only other option is failure.

There. It's not fair but it's the way it is.

May many more continue to walk the road past the added obstacles of whites and blacks who tell them they're too "fragile" and find the success they're capable of.

CJ said...

Morgan, I too find it disturbing when whites act like successful blacks are some sort of anomaly. At one time victimhood was foisted on blacks. Now it's a conscious choice. With apologies to Luke because I'm not necessarily saying he feels this way since I don't know him, but the kind of stuff he's spouting is common among whites who want to show how sensitive they are by oozing guilt and sympathy. That attitude gives them street cred with Sharptonites and other whites who enjoy wallowing in guilt but for those of us who would like to see all the races enjoy the benefits of what this country offers, it comes across as disingenuous elitism.

Morgan said...

I agree, CJ. The argument does smack as elitism. I'm sure Luke and will have to just agree to disagree on this issue. It's hard to debate someone who - when given examples of blacks who have succeeded - sniffs and says, "Well, they're TV stars" as if they were born to it and didn't have to work their asses off and overcome more obstacles - given their age- than exist today to find the success they now enjoy.
It's just a good thing they never listened to the poverty-pimping black leaders and "well-meaning" whites who patted them on the head and said, "There there. The black race has gone through too much for you to even try and succeed. If you don't even try, we'll understand."
Pfft. ;-)

Erik said...

the fuck-and-go mentality of their men and the idea that being education is only for white folks.

not to nitpick or anything... but I guess being educated isn't for hippies either.

(o=

thimscool said...

Well, I was concerned that Morgan’s obfuscation and deliberate misinterpretation of my words would affect other readers, and now CJ has furnished proof.

I appreciate that you acknowledge not knowing me or my thoughts, CJ… but however you couch your criticism, you are basically saying that I am being a disingenuous elitist.

This discussion is becoming increasingly unpleasant. Up until now I have tried to defend myself against misunderstanding and misrepresentation… but I see that Morgan is intent on insisting that I am calling successful blacks sell-outs and discouraging self reliance. As I have repeatedly, rationally protested, I am doing neither.

I am posting this as my last effort to protect my point of view from being painted in Morgan’s tar and CJ’s feathers. I would make it clear to anyone reading this that if they take Morgan’s word for what I believe, rather than my own, than they deserve her company more than I do.

thimscool said...

First of all, CJ, I am not oozing guilt, as I pointed out above. I am not personally responsible for slavery. But together, we all share some responsibility. I believe that the US collectively owes an unpaid debt to black Americans with enslaved ancestors. We made and broke our treaties with the Native Americans. But we never even tried to settle up with the African Americans. There was “40 acres and a mule”, but Johnson took that land right back and only 1000 parcels were distributed in the first place. We owe, collectively. You would be surprised what sorts of problems a healthy chunk of change can resolve. And however the money is spent, we can take solace in knowing that the great wheel of the economy will bring it all back home one day…

The civil rights struggle was successful. The law, as written, is color blind. In fact, we went so far as to favor promising (elite) black Americans through affirmative action. And we bussed students to promote integration (which further scrambled our country’s neighborhoods). And we forced businesses with EIN numbers and public space to integrate. Really, our corporatist society has bent over backwards to promote assimilation, in some ways.

But we never really tried to compensate former slaves for their damages. By the laws and actions of a democratically elected government, we aided and abetted a private industry of enslavement. The Fed is so fond of printing up obscene quantities of cheap dollars to fund our defense industry. Let them print up some funds to give cash money grants to the descendants of slaves. Remember what Uncle Dick says: “Deficits don’t matter.”

From a moral standpoint, it finally, genuinely answers the criticisms that I have raised here. There is no more wiggle room for the white-haters after a reparations deal. Have a public forum, as well as Senate and Congress debates. Pass a law to spend the money, equally by ancestor share, to all African American descendents of slaves. And eliminate affirmative action. Make a settlement. Make it public. Finish this. Do you doubt that it could be done?

~~~

Secondly, your kinda-maybe insult about disingenuous elitism ‘comes across as’ weak bullshit. The first thing I said about corporatism is that it affects every other ism too. I have admittedly singled out black Americans as having gotten a particularly raw deal from our society; but poor people of all races are crushed by the excesses of corporatism. Why? ~ because elitism is part and parcel of corporatism. And not everyone is elite… you dig? Of course you do.

So tens of millions of people of all races are getting to work two or three crappy jobs to stay ‘afloat’… at least until they get a serious ailment and bankrupt their family… And what of the homeless? And the runaways? They are probably not elite. This is reality. Many of them are addicted, many are mentally ill, many are in no shape to ‘get a job’ that requires you to shampoo regularly.

I would never tell any individual that there is no hope for them. Everyone has hope and a way for salvation, for self-healing, for rising above the nonsense that encumbers them. However, numbers don’t lie. African Americans are disproportionately: poor, incarcerated, homeless, single-parented, addicted, murdered, and aborted. That is reality. So it is relevant that our government harbored and abetted the difficult birth of African American culture in the US.

Since this situation is reality, it is bad form to simply hover over the sufferers and comment on how many of their recent wounds are self inflicted. Sort of like when George Bush detoured his vacation flight to fly over New Orleans so that he could survey the Katrina destruction.

Tell me again when I said anything about how blacks shouldn’t strive to succeed? Could you furnish a quote? Will it be even lamer than Morgan’s quotes attempting to insinuate that I think every successful black person is a sell out? How low can you go?

thimscool said...

Morgan, I have a news flash for you! Here is is:
Corporations employ people by *buying* their time.

When those employees are very successful, and salaried, and brought into the corporate fold, that is probably because they are focusing their life around their work. I can’t condemn it, but I can say that there are only 8760 hours in a year, and at least 2000 are spent blogging in self defense. Being a parent takes around 20,000… so really there isn’t too much time left over for middle and upper class blacks to spend on community development.

To be more serious, many black leaders in local communities do volunteer generously of their time and money. And there are many successful black small businesses that build the wealth of the community directly. I don’t mean to denigrate the efforts put in. However, the results speak for themselves. I have provided a plausible historical explanation for the disparity, and suggested a remedy. You and CJ just sit there clicking your tongues at the apparent inability of the black community to get it’s shit together. Then you imply that I am the elitist who thinks blacks are ‘fragile’, when in fact it was your fragile conscience to which I was referring. You are demonstrably unqualified to be the chef that “boils down” my writing.

thimscool said...

and with apologies to you and Jesse Jackson, but it [the holocost] *was* as terrible as slavery

Tell me Morgan… what was this bullshit? Are you next implying that I’m an anti-Semite? Do any of your arguments consist of logic, rather than accusations?

The atrocities carried out by some Europeans against the Jews were incomparable. It would suck to choose, but I would rather be a slave on your great, great, great granddaddy’s plantation than a Jew watching his son get stuffed in an oven. Still, we are talking about black American culture today, and how it came to be. And I stand by what I said about the history of African Americans as it compares to the Jewish history in Germany or anywhere. At least the remnant Jews had a coherent culture. What did freed slaves have? Fragments, poorly annealed. Your bluster is pathetic.

thimscool said...

What bothers me is that people like you who assume that blacks are just too stupid and damaged to follow the model of successful blacks who have blazed the trail.

Yes, Morgan. This is why I’m still here defending my good moniker against your poisonous venom. I defy you to show how I have said any such thing. You can’t. You are just a mean-spirit, intent on insult.



We have a black who could be president, for heavens sake. And it's not because he sold out, Luke, it's because he got a good education and worked hard to achieve his goals. He set goals anyone can set, and used the same system to achieve.

Once again, I repeat: I did not say that anyone “sold out”. See above, in quadruplicate. You are a knave.



You laughably spoke of how a person with a crack-addicted mama can't succeed but Oprah is a perfect example. She grew up poor, in a n abusive home.

The occasional ‘big winner’ in Vegas just stirs the pot, but everyone knows that the house will always win on the averages. Oprah is very talented, and certainly is a hard worker to have achieved as she has done. She is free to devote her attentions to whatever interests her, and apparently will also interest her millions of devoted followers. Good for her! One down, and millions to go. You can’t be serious. You think some anecdotes will cancel out the incarceration or addiction statistics? Even worse, you think that I’m a racist because I understand that the market can only afford a few Oprahs, a few Jordan’s, a few [insert famous black celebrity]’s. That is what makes them special… and therefore not very useful in determining how we think about the black community at large… see? They are what we call an outlier.

I have met several of successful blacks that were very generous and focused on improving their communities through economic development directly in that community. I wish there were more black and white people committed to that goal. Most of the young black professionals/corporate types that I have met are completely wrapped up in the game, like the rest of us. They may have strong feelings, but these are, time wise, a secondary consideration to the mechanics of maintaining an upwardly-mobile life in America. If you’re Oprah rich, you can take up causes. If you’re not, then it’s a little harder.

What would be great would be if people’s work was actually in and for companies owned by people in their communities. Then, by default people would be spending their most productive efforts on their community. Sounds like a fairy tail, but hell, it’s not even Communist.

thimscool said...

So are we [Morgan and her family] just smarter than blacks?

I’m thinking, “No.”

Or is it possible that you are wrong, wrong, wrong and that blacks are not "fragile" as you would paint them but just as individually capable of success as anyone else?


No Morgan… as I have demonstrated, that is *your* painting. I believe that the average black *baby out of context* is certainly “as individually capable of success as anyone else.” I don’t know about the average black man. A lot of the younger ones are in jail which is often impediment to success. And then you have the educational disparity. And I suspect that racism still plays a roll even though we’ve done a lot to minimize the expression of racism in our collective culture.



These are choices, Luke, and blacks are as capable of whites of making the right ones.

And you just go on and on, as if I actually said or implied said that Blacks can’t make good choices. You have no shame.


I'm sure Luke and will have to just agree to disagree on this issue.

Actually I can’t agree to disagree, because you don’t even understand me. I’ve tried to be as articulate as I can, but I guess I failed. It probably doesn’t help that I have to spend all my ink on defending myself against misrepresentations.


It's hard to debate someone who - when given examples of blacks who have succeeded - sniffs and says, "Well, they're TV stars"

You call it debate? You think a one-in a million star is the anecdote for understanding the problems of healing black culture? Pathetic. Do you tell your kids to bank on being rock stars?


t's just a good thing they never listened to the poverty-pimping black leaders and "well-meaning" whites who patted them on the head and said, "There there. The black race has gone through too much for you to even try and succeed. If you don't even try, we'll understand.

Again and again. Totally at odds with what I have written.

I have suggested a specific remedy. A cash settlement, payable over time. I suspect that would be the necessary jumpstart, financially and due to the psychological benefits for all sides of having reached a settlement. I would hope that the lure of all that money would bring successful people of all races to the ghetto to trade. And after the payback, no more special treatment, and we just deal with poor blacks the way we do with poor whites…

CJ said...

Luke uses words like "knave" "venom" "mean spirit" and then he complains about your debate style? I have to say that you're exactly right, Morgan. White liberals don't understand the meaning of irony and thimscool embarrasses himself by demonstrating it here by behaving in the very way - and worse - while whining over how he's been treated. No wonder he sympathize with Sharpton. He has the same double standard and victim mentality.
Regarding reparations, the man needs to study his history and read up on how blacks came to be in the Middle Passage. Many of them were sold into slavery by their rival tribes who saw the profit in kidnapping enemy tribesman and selling them. The Spaniards and later the English brought the slaves over originally. Certainly the practice existed and slave labor built much of the U.S. but the whole "repayment" for slavery falls on a lot of shoulders, not just those of white Americans. Shouldn't the Spanish and European governments chip in?
Another problem is that there's not a single living slave left in this country today. Not a one. While blacks got the share of it, they weren't the only ones exploited in the building of this nation. Working conditions for immigrant men, women and children were often horrible. The fact that they came here willingly doesn't mean that the rich had a right to abuse them and pay them next to nothing. Could they demand some sort of compensation, too?

CJ said...

And for the record Luke no one is tarring and feathering you. You freely interpret the intentions of others and then throw a tantrum over your own interpretations. I never said you were elitist. I think your comments smack of elitism. There is a difference between name calling, which you have embarrassed yourself by doing and drawing a conclusion from written words, which we are ALL guilty of.

Morgan said...

I'm not too concerned about the dramatics, CJ. I have a four-year-old who - when we don't do or say what he wants - will throw himself down on the floor and declare that we're being mean or that we don't love him anymore. Coincidentally, his name is also Luke. ;-)

Per your diatribe, Luke, sometimes I wonder if you're deliberately trying to be funny or if it's just a happy accident. While hopping about and yelling like some crazed gnome, you failed to notice the irony of your own solution.

You compare the success Oprah and Michael Jordan to hitting the lottery. The last time I checked, hitting the lottery didn't require any effort. I think the discipline and hard work it took for both those individuals to achieve took more work than buying a ticket down at the local Wa-Wa. And while most blacks - and whites for that matter - won't likely achieve that kind of stellar success, success doesn't necessarily mean millions of dollars. It can mean a getting an education, finding a decent job and raising a family with good values. That's a goal within reach of every black or white.

But you seem to think that most blacks are too damaged or incapable of that, and your solution to helping people too fragile to make it as a group is to throw money at them. Because as we know money melts away all sins and after they get the money and prosper or - being flawed and fragile - invest or lose it we generous white folk will say, "Hey, that's it. You've got your money. Don't expect anything else."

The money isn't for them, but rather for white people people who encourage and enable blacks to continue to wallow in resentment, not because they truly care but because they look Sympathetic for caring.

Sure, you can throw money at the black community, but if the problem is as deep as you say won't change a thing. Ultimately you'll find that your idea of buying off the blacks is no different than the one you accuse corporate America of having used. And you'll be back to square one, flagellating yourself again.

And I think you're going to need a bigger whip.

Anonymous said...

Coincidentally, his name is also Luke. ;-)

ROFL!!

thimscool said...

Actually CJ, I used those words after I had complained about Morgan three times for misrepresenting my words and then peeing on the straw-man she created. In the last instance she accused me of assuming that blacks are “stupid and damaged”. This is tantamount to accusing me of being a racist, and nothing like what I think or what I have said.

Personally, I would not care if Morgan called me names, rather than publicly representing me as a racist/elitist in this forum. I have said nothing to deserve it. If I call her a knave, I at least have a reason behind my venom.

~~~

I hope you didn’t spend a lot of time thinking about your objection to reparations… I’ll be sure to bone up on my knowledge of the middle passage and the ugly ends, thanks for the encouragement. But for now let’s just apply a little logic… Let’s say Sam and George, assault and rob you. George flees to his home country, and no one can find him. Do you still seek to punish Sam (criminally) and recoup your damages (civilly)? Yes you do. The judge/jury may reduce the severity of Sam’s civil punishment if they consider that he acted with an accomplice, but Sam will still pay.

When the slave ships came up Cape Fear and unloaded their cargo, those Africans became enslaved Americans, with the encouragement and promotion of the colonial governments, the *current* federal government, and many of the *current* state governments. These governments expected to prosper and increase their economic and political power, by promoting a system of slavery. This fact is independent of the legal and moral issues surrounding the British ship that brought the slaves, or the shameful African slave hunters. The State of North Carolina, and/or the Federal Government of the USA, could have declared those African men, women, and children to be free, upon setting foot on our shores. They did not. Instead they preferred to prosper from the infliction of suffering on others, and they did prosper.

As for your question about the compensation for poor immigrants, I was not aware that run-away immigrants were systematically hunted. I’m sure that if someone discovered a run-away indentured servant, and they were so inclined, that they could turn this person in to the authorities. But I doubt seriously that the authorities were coming for the contract breakers with dogs and posses. That is a tool of the state reserved for criminals and slaves. And the state explicitly stated the racist reasoning for this difference in the legislature and the court transcripts. Remember, the defendant in this case is the government, not the nasty corporations or plantation families. It is a collective burden that we all share as Americans, and that I share as a North Carolinian. I don’t think that the government should be held accountable for the specific violence or oppression of any given plantation or factory. This was six generations ago. Nevertheless, the government is still accountable for enabling this exploitation.

Now, whether or not the federal and state governments are fully responsible for the damages that accrued due to the policy of slavery is another question. Certainly one is tempted to carry this into the private sector, but where would that stop? I don’t support punitive damages against the descendants of slave owners, or even corporations that profited from slavery. I think the governments should admit their culpability, and come up with a reasonable settlement to repay the descendents of slaves for the crappy policies we made.

The restraining terms of the settlement would be:
1) The end of affirmative action and any race-based considerations in government or in laws that regulate the general economy.
2) Indemnity for all government, personal, and corporate entities against further slave-reparation liability suits.

The money would go directly to the currently living descendents of the slaves, in proportion to the number of enslaved ancestors they can demonstrate as of the 1860 Census. The money should just be paid out on a monthly schedule for, let’s say, 10 years. The pay outs would be transferable property of the estates, and continue to pay the heirs until the 10 years are up. There would not be a bureaucracy for determining whether someone should still get the money based on their ; it’s just bank account numbers, with fixed monthly pay-ins. The money would be treated as income, and be taxable like anyone’s income. The big question, is how much money is appropriate.

thimscool said...

Morgan, unlike your son Luke, I don’t care if you “love me anymore”. I have expressed my concern that you are poisoning my reputation by implying that I am a racist elitist that believes that all successful blacks are “sell outs”. Your and CJ’s insinuation that I am throwing a tantrum is a pathetic attempt to distract from my having nailed you both repeatedly. I have actually built a case for the indictment of corporatism and the necessity of slave reparations, while defending myself from your petty slanders. I’m not really sure about how well my case would stand up to honest scrutiny, but there’s no chance of that happening around here.

What have you achieved? You’ve implied that a friend’s considered opinions are tantamount to racism. You’ve resorted to taunting me that I’m like a (very elitist sounding) four-year-old. And I guess you also managed to reinforce your point that Sharpton is a weenie for catering to a culture of victimization. Nice work.

As for the ‘unintentional humor’ of the lottery, I wish you were joking, but I think you’re actually serious… I stated above that I think Oprah worked hard for her success. And if you think that I believe Michael Jordan trained on a Lazy Boy recliner, you would be wrong again. But many people work two or even three crappy jobs to make ends meet. They work very hard, just like Oprah. But the economy can only support so many Oprah’s, and they just weren’t quite as elite as Oprah, so they make $6.25 an hour while Oprah gets thousands of dollars per hour… Why don’t you admit that it is daft to attempt to analyze black American culture based on Oprah?

And while most blacks - and whites for that matter - won't likely achieve that kind of stellar success, success doesn't necessarily mean millions of dollars. It can mean a getting an education, finding a decent job and raising a family with good values. That's a goal within reach of every black or white.

This point starts out well, but then you make an assertion that is obviously not true. Not every white, nor every black, can achieve the goal of getting a good education and job. It might be true that *any* black or white person is potentially capable, given the proper circumstances and motivation. But it is demonstrably true that *every* person cannot achieve success, until the good Lord comes and makes the lions lay down with the lambs, right?

We can damn sure try though. And yes, people should be self-reliant, and proactive, and committed to their children’s future. But if you can’t see that the losers (regardless of race) in our system are often trapped by their situations, then I don’t know what to say…

Your response is to say, “Stop being dummies! You’re not trapped! Get off your ass and stop whining about racism!” That approach doesn’t solve anything, and society continues to careens along towards a banana republic level of wealth disparity, which makes us all weaker. It’s better for us all if it’s better for all of us.


But you seem to think that most blacks are too damaged or incapable of that, and your solution to helping people too fragile to make it as a group is to throw money at them.

Again with the “Luke thinks most blacks are damaged.” What bullshit. Most blacks are entirely capable of lifting themselves to success. But many are not in a position to capitalize on either hard work or determination. Also, it is not “helping” to pay reparations; it is a debt repaid, for damages done, and not a handout. If you get money back in an insurance settlement when someone totaled your car, would you call that money “help”?


Because as we know money melts away all sins and after they get the money and prosper or - being flawed and fragile - invest or lose it we generous white folk will say, "Hey, that's it. You've got your money. Don't expect anything else."

Personally, I think that there should be medicaid, “workfare” and other government programs that attempt to lift people out of poverty. A black person that squandered their payback and remained impoverished would still be eligible for these types of assistance programs, just like everyone else. But, yes, it would mean that they should not expect preferential treatment in hiring, benefits, or any other special entitlement, based on their race.


The money isn't for them, but rather for white people people who encourage and enable blacks to continue to wallow in resentment, not because they truly care but because they look Sympathetic for caring.

Whatever. I’m talking cash payments to direct descendents of slaves, to accounts set up on a one time basis, for a specified period of time. White people who have no direct slave ancestors will get no check. If they want to get their hands on that money, they need to earn it by doing business with the black community. You’re so intent on insulting me that you can’t stitch together a coherent thought.

Sure, you can throw money at the black community, but if the problem is as deep as you say won't change a thing.

Again, it is repayment of a debt… not “throwing money”. And it will change a lot. In spite of corporatism’s best efforts, there is still a healthy small business climate in America. In the richest parts of the country, you see odd boutiques, exotic services, and all the trapping of a vibrant small business community. In poor areas, the basics are mostly there, but they are often provided exclusively by large corporate interests that are the only ones that can seem to make profits off of the meager trade. Who has the capital to open a restaurant next to the McDonalds?

I believe in capitalism, and in the market. I do think that the modern form of the corporation and investment banking is doing a lot of harm to the poor people in our society. But I think that small businesses, competing to serve their community, are what make life better for the masses. And communities that lack the funds to support that kind of business culture will have great trouble lifting themselves out of the swamp.

Welfare and housing assistance, predicated on employment history, number of children, etc. is a nightmare to administer. And in many ways it has been a disaster. Moreover, the meager amount of money that it gives out per person is not going to promote community economic development. Food stamps just get spent at big corporations. Cash distributions to specific bank accounts on a specific schedule are like shoveling coal into a depleted fire. Wealthy blacks would get a little more tee time, poor blacks would get the option to think about their ten year plan. Middle class blacks, the heart of the community, would get the chance to open that business they always wished they could afford. Or spend more time with their kids (by cutting back to just one job).


Ultimately you'll find that your idea of buying off the blacks is no different than the one you accuse corporate America of having used.

You are so confused. We owe them. It isn’t buying them off. It is paying them back.

Dirk_Star said...

Great post.

thimscool said...

Always...