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Blacks Must Confront Reality About Racial Discrimination

Though racial discrimination exists, it is nowhere near the barrier it once was. The relevant question is: How much of what we see today can be explained by racial discrimination? This is an important question because if we conclude that racial discrimination is the major cause of black problems when it isn’t, then effective solutions will be elusive forever. To begin to get a handle on the answer, let’s pull up a few historical facts about black Americans.

In 1950, female-headed households were 18 percent of the black population. Today it’s close to 70 percent. One study of 19th-century slave families found that in up to three-fourths of the families, all the children lived with the biological mother and father. In 1925 New York City, 85 percent of black households were two-parent households. Herbert Gutman, author of “The Black Family in Slavery and Freedom, 1750-1925,” reports, “Five in six children under the age of six lived with both parents.” Also, both during slavery and as late as 1920, a teenage girl raising a child without a man present was rare among blacks.

A study of 1880 family structure in Philadelphia found that three-quarters of black families were nuclear families (composed of two parents and children). What is significant, given today’s arguments that slavery and discrimination decimated the black family structure, is the fact that years ago, there were only slight differences in family structure among racial groups.

Coupled with the dramatic breakdown in the black family structure has been an astonishing growth in the rate of illegitimacy. The black illegitimacy rate in 1940 was about 14 percent; black illegitimacy today is over 70 percent, and in some cities, it is over 80 percent.

The point of bringing up these historical facts is to ask this question, with a bit of sarcasm: Is the reason the black family was far healthier in the late 1800s and 1900s that back then there was far less racial discrimination and there were greater opportunities? Or did what experts call the “legacy of slavery” wait several generations to victimize today’s blacks?

The Census Bureau pegs the poverty rate among blacks at 28.1 percent. A statistic that one never hears about is that the poverty rate among intact married black families has been in the single digits for more than two decades, currently at 8.4 percent. Weak family structures not only spell poverty and dependency but also contribute to the social pathology seen in many black communities — for example, violence and predatory sex. Each year, roughly 7,000 blacks are murdered. Ninety-four percent of the time, the murderer is another black person. Though blacks are 13 percent of the nation’s population, they account for more than 50 percent of homicide victims. Nationally, the black homicide victimization rate is six times that of whites, and in some cities, it’s 22 times that of whites. According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, between 1976 and 2011, there were 279,384 black murder victims. Coupled with being most of the nation’s homicide victims, blacks are also major victims of violent personal crimes, such as assault, rape and robbery.

To put this violence in perspective, black fatalities during the Korean War (3,075), Vietnam War (7,243) and all wars since 1980 (about 8,200) come to about 18,500, a number that pales in comparison with black loss of life at home. Young black males had a greater chance of reaching maturity on the battlefields of Iraq and Afghanistan than on the streets of Philadelphia, Chicago, Detroit, Oakland, Newark and other cities.

The black academic achievement gap is a disaster. Often, black 12th-graders can read, write and deal with scientific and math problems at only the level of white sixth-graders. This doesn’t bode well for success in college or passing civil service exams.

If it is assumed that problems that have a devastating impact on black well-being are a result of racial discrimination and a “legacy of slavery” when they are not, resources spent pursuing a civil rights strategy will yield disappointing results.

  • TehutiKhepra .

    I respect Mr. Williams’ statistical perspective of Blacks in America deplorable structure and the predicated violence of black-on-black crime and illegitimacy. However, what I find absent is the measure of police violence directed at black neighborhoods all America
    that struggle as a result of profiling, war of drug (the license for a police
    state in black communities) and the vilification of white police disdain for anything
    black that can be attacked lawfully without retribution. What a shame and crime when you are judged by the color of your skin from slavery and not by the content of your character is the elephant is the room. The prevalent problem of white Americans– there I said it, is the problem of the color line.

    Perhaps the writer is a favorite of the elite he aspires to emulate and forgets
    his ancestry roots and history in being born free in a society that protect a
    peoples right same as white peoples.

  • Swede_P

    Mr. Williams mentioned several examples in which blacks as a community suffer and that such suffering is blamed on historical slavery, discrimination etc.
    Remember that victimhood is a blank cheque and it can be very appealing. This applies to people of all colours and walks of life. Simply find a way to claim that you are a victim and then all of a sudden you have an excuse for every failing in your life and you no longer have to behave morally. Listen out for the victim card and see how often it is played by all sorts of people who habitually do the wrong thing.

  • aliswell

    Good grief, there you go again. It seems to be virtually impossible for some folks to see the truth even when it’s biting them in their nether regions. Until blacks look within and desire REAL change, nothing will ever change for the better. Not ever.

  • jasa potts

    It also seems impossible for some folks to look at it from a black person’s perspective. Anytime someone is against blacks the bandwagon starts and everything else is false. I also respect the research he did, but I do not think he researched well enough. Regardless of the statistics let’s really think about why the statistics started rising. Let’s really think about how many hate crimes there are against black people. I honestly believe some black Americans carry it out and some white people are racist. Each party so badly wants to convince themselves as well as others, that racism is and isn’t around. Nothing will change until black people stop playing the race card, police officers stop killing black people, and white racist pricks stop pretending it isn’t them keeping racism alive.

  • aliswell

    Hate crimes against black people? Are you insane? Get your head out of the sandbox and look around. Are you even remotely aware of how many hate crimes blacks commit against whites within any given week? Wake up.

    NOTHING is going to change for the better within the black “community” until blacks change from within. Nothing. Stop worshipping your race and join the human race. The world is waiting….

  • jasa potts

    I’m awake & what do I look like worshipping black people? Do you know me or my race? No. Stop with the ignorant assumptions. White people always say it’s black people keeping it alive, but fail to mention the racist videos that go viral and the beatings. Are you remotely aware that white people are racist? So much denial, no responsibility. I never said there weren’t hate crimes against white people. I have seen many stories about hate crimes against whites. I have seen many against blacks too. If you clearly read what I said, I agreed black Americans have a part in it. I clearly stated black people need to change, but so do white people. Every state is different regarding racism, but you can’t tell me what I have witnessed. Some white people are racist regardless of what you believe. Maybe you should open your eyes and look at all sides instead of one.

  • aliswell

    “I have seen many stories about hate crimes against whites. I have seen many against blacks too.”

    You have not seen “many” hate crimes against blacks. Not in 50 years you haven’t. You’re either lying or are delusional.

    Does white racism exist? A tiny fraction compared to the open anti-white racism I see every single day. And the white “racism” I see now is a direct result of the overt war on whites being waged. You seriously need to wake up and own it.

  • jasa potts

    So basically you’re trying to tell me I haven’t seen it because you haven’t? Like where do you live? There are many hate crime stories against black people in the last 50 years. Let’s not forget the civil rights movement was just in the 60s. So uh maybe you could say 20 or 30 years, even then it wouldn’t be true. I know what I have seen just like you know what you’ve seen. You said it a few times yourself, what YOU SEE. I’m not here to tell you you’re wrong but just because you see and believe something, doesn’t mean everything else is false. Wake up and realize it’s really different depending on where you live.

  • aliswell

    Oh, stop already. You’ve not seen ANY white-on-black racism, little girl, and you know it. You’re a perfect example of the finished product of decades of public school indoctrination. You’ve been conditioned to believe white-on-black crimes and racism not only exists, it’s rampant. Only it isn’t. Quite the opposite, actually. But you’ll go on, aping what you’re told like a good little drone. smh

  • jasa potts

    Haha okay, I’m a little girl and this and that.. blah blah blah. Who doesn’t see racism against blacks? Aparently not you. You know it all though. Not conditioned, I just know what I have seen. You’re a perfect example of ignorance. It does exists, but stay under your rock. I’m done with this conversation. Open your mind a little. ✌