If you’re new(ish) to this blog, I’d like to encourage you to read two older postings. In case you missed them.
- Unfairness, Perpetuated – A friend of mine recently complained that white racists like to adopt a position that “now that black people are free, they haven’t made anything of themselves.” Never mind that ignores a tremendous amount of accomplishment – which is insulting – it also ignores the fact that white people “freed the slaves” and then immediately came up with a new mechanism for keeping black people down. In this posting, Robert Paul Wolff explains how the economic knock-on effect of one tiny bit of racism can affect the outcome of a family for generations.
- Seceding Over Slavery – The entire “states rights” and secession attempt by the south was just a recapitulation of a successful strategy that Americans had used before.
If we were white, if we were Irish, if we were Jewish, or Poles, if we had in fact in your mind a frame of reference, our heroes would be your heroes, too. And Nat Turner would be a hero for you, instead of a threat. Malcolm X might still be alive. And everyone is proud of brave little Israel – I don’t want to be misinterpreted, I’m not an antisemite – but you know when the Israelis pick up guns, or the Poles, or the Irish or any white man in the world says “give me liberty or give me death!” the entire white world applauds. When a black man says exactly the same thing – word for word – he is judged a criminal and treated like one and everything possible is done to make an example of this bad nigger so there won’t be any more like him.
– James Baldwin (interview with Dick Cavett)
I’m not under the illusion that my writing is incredible, that’s not why. Actually, the posts I’m talking about largely consist of quotes. I think the topics is important.