The dominant community as well as a lot of self appointed voices of the black community is constantly accusing blacks who cry racism of living in the past. That black people have transcended racism and are now victims of their own deplorable culture as well as just plain old laziness. And somehow we are looking into the past and using this as an excuse as a reason for our lack of jobs, healthcare, wealth and our over representation in the prison system.
The fallacy that we hear constantly out of people such as Bill Cosby, John McWhorter, Shelby Steele and many in the dominant culture is that blacks are falling behind because blacks don’t want to do better. We just need to pick ourselves up by our bootstraps and we would be doing fine. Basically blacks lack jobs and wealth because they won’t embrace the values of the dominant culture.
Frederick L. Hoffman who was working for Prudential Insurance Company in 1896 compiled a bunch of information about why blacks couldn’t be insured in response to a wave of state legislation banning discrimination against blacks. According to Megan J Wolff, MPH who wrote a report for the government noted that “Hoffman, a German immigrant, was one of the leading statisticians of his time and also a strong proponent of racial hierarchy and white supremacy.”
He used data from the census to show that since being freed blacks were doing far worse than whites on all fronts. And that the problem was NOT due to racism, he argued strongly that it was all due to “race traits and tendencies.” Somehow blacks weren’t being adversely affected by racism, that as soon as they were freed from slavery somehow the playing field was even. And that black people were now able to compete with whites for any and everything that they needed in life.
Then soon after this report Plessy v. Ferguson in 1896 segregation was enacted. Supposedly blacks and whites would receive the same services of schools, hospitals and bathrooms, etc. That each would use independent of the other. But what of course happened was that the services and the facilities reserved for blacks were always lower in quality or value than those reserved for whites. At the time schools for blacks received significantly less public funding per student than white schools.
And looking at “white flight” and the demographic of today’s society we have De facto segregation one that persists to varying levels without the endorsement of law to this present day. The present-day racial segregation seen in America in our residential neighborhoods has been formed by public policies such as housing, mortgage discrimination and redlining which is the practice of arbitrarily denying or limiting financial services to specific neighborhoods, generally because its residents are people of color or are poor.
G Stanley Hall described Africans, Indians, and Chinese as members of “adolescent races” in a stage of incomplete growth.” He also instructed black people to stop sympathizing “with their own criminals” and “accept without whining patheticism and corroding self-pity [their] present situation, prejudice and all.” I am sure that this sounds familiar as we hear this out of many mouths on a constant basis when anything racial ailing blacks finds its way to the mainstream media. In fact didn’t Pat Buchanan just write an article telling blacks that they need to thank god everyday for being in America? Stop our whining about how terrible racism is and look at how terrible white people have it just having to deal with us and our criminality, illegitimate children and bleak outlook for the future.
How about we do look at the past and while we are at it why don’t we look at the conditions of today in comparison. We see that the Cosby’s, McWhorter’s and Steele’s’ are telling us the same old Hoffman bull about blacks being the ONLY cause of their problems regardless if racism exists or not. Black inner city schools and neighborhoods failings aren’t due to the fact that they receive far less tax dollars than white communities just like segregation, but due to the laziness and stupidity of the black community.
Blacks not getting jobs or adequate healthcare are totally due to black inferiority in the job market not the fact that the dominant culture has been and is acquiescent in the discrimination that continues the disparity. Blacks’ over representation in the justice system is due to their ill culture and criminality not that they are being kept from resources given the white community that greatly diminishes the root cause of criminality.
Continuing to pretend that looking at the past is the root cause to all of our current racial woes has done nothing more than ensure the continuation of those racial woes. We are living the past continuously as in that movie Groundhog Day. Every day we wake up we are subjected to a barrage of racist propaganda used originally to ensure that blacks would NOT have access to the same resources afforded the white community. And no one can deny that we still don’t have access to the same resources afforded the white community today. We are still subjected to finger pointing, racist science, De facto segregation which is still separate and not even close to equal.