Open dialogue, joined hands

Honest dialogue on race is possible, but sadly rare

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Attorney General Eric Holder called us a “nation of cowards” when it comes to discussing race.

OK. So, when presidential candidate Newt Gingrich gamely faced an audience at a black church over the weekend, explaining his idea to have kids hired by their schools, was he hailed as courageous – praised for thinking out of the box and proposing precisely 1 (one) more solution to black America’s problems than the first black president ever has?

Nope. He was jeered and called a racist and a bigot – even though most poor kids are white, and giving youths of all races the opportunity to earn money and skills, learn a work ethic and stay engaged in their schools can only be a good thing.

You don’t have to be a coward to learn from such episodes that it’s safer to keep your mouth shut.

Thankfully, the dialogue in Augusta this past weekend was infinitely more productive and promising.

Students from Howard University and Paine College debated “The State of Young Black Men in America” at Paine’s chapel Sunday. The discourse was respectful, yet open and honest and solutions-oriented. The students rose far above the finger-pointing they see older generations continuing to engage in.

Is that a generational thing? If so, maybe there’s something we can learn from our kids.

In truth, many of the problems facing young black men are shared in the larger society – a breakdown in family, an ebbing of religious influences, a lack of appreciation for history, a rejection of the moral principles that built the country and more.

An honest, open and yes, courageous dialogue on race might reveal that these liberating, empowering principles that could lift up so many young people are denied them by a culture that scoffs at them – and by politicians and media who have sold the lie that those who espouse such principles are the enemy of black America.

Sadly enough, a “church service” at the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s church in Atlanta perpetrated that stereotype on Sunday, with the hyper-partisan senior White House adviser Valerie Jarrett attacking Republicans from the pulpit and politicizing the King holiday as never before. One Atlanta reporter said it had the feel of a “campaign stop” for the president.

Jarrett’s repugnant use of the King holiday – and church – for translucent political gain is reminiscent of a movie quote describing a politician as “interested in two things and two things only: making you afraid of it and telling you who’s to blame for it.”

In contrast, one doctoral student at Howard said the Augusta panel discussion itself – which stressed family, education, self-reliance, high expectations and giving back to the community – was an indication that young black men are headed in the right direction.

They might be surprised, especially after listening to some politicians and media types, to know how many people are eager to join hands with them – if given half a chance.

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Techfan
6462
Points
Techfan 01/18/12 - 06:59 am
0
0
"the African American

"the African American community should demand paychecks and not be satisfied with food stamps." How could anyone read that as a racial comment?

Riverman1
93481
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Riverman1 01/18/12 - 07:01 am
0
0
Techfan, that sounds racist

Techfan, that sounds racist to me. Where did it come from?

effete elitist liberal
3191
Points
effete elitist liberal 01/18/12 - 08:38 am
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I note ACES passed over the

I note ACES passed over the comment by one young black man at the conference who said it was important to reaffirm that "it takes a village" to insure success for black Americans, a concept ridiculed by Santorum and other conservatives. Also, Gingrich has loudly defended the idea of giving poor inner-city kids, mostly blacks, jobs as school janitors, since many "lack a work ethic." There is nothing more reaffirming of the conservative white males' world view than seeing "black folk" trailing along behind them pushing mops and brooms. Wonder how that idea played at the conference?

Bruno
780
Points
Bruno 01/18/12 - 08:40 am
0
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Gingrich said it but that is

Gingrich said it but that is a snippet of what he said. The full sentence was, "So I'm prepared, if the NAACP invites me, I'll go to their convention and talk about why the African-American community should demand paychecks and not be satisfied with food stamps." You can see the video here.
http://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2012/01/05/gingrich_blacks_should...

Bruno
780
Points
Bruno 01/18/12 - 08:54 am
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It is true that 33% of food

It is true that 33% of food stamp recipients are white while only 22% are black. I find it interesting that any mention of food stamp recipients is seen as code for black people. This shows an inherent, passive bigotry in the one making the assumption that you are speaking only of black people.
Gingrich was addressing, in this instance, meeting with the NAACP concerning poverty in the AA community and the fact that the food stamp program has risen substantially during Obama's reign. Since the NAACP is a racially specific organization it would stand to reason that he would speak directly to the demographics of that organization. Why would he meet with the NAACP to talk about getting more Koreans off food stamps? (Koreans used as an example only.)

justthefacts
24985
Points
justthefacts 01/18/12 - 08:56 am
0
0
Republican candidates trying

Republican candidates trying to woo the black vote is a complete waste of time and money.

effete elitist liberal
3191
Points
effete elitist liberal 01/18/12 - 09:13 am
0
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Bruno: given the chance to

Bruno: given the chance to address the NAACP, do you suppose Gingrich would explain to them how so many of the African-Americans in the food stamps program are there because they lack a work ethic?

Chillen
17
Points
Chillen 01/18/12 - 09:15 am
0
0
If you work the food stamp

If you work the food stamp recipient math, 43% of all black Americans are getting food stamps. That is nearing half of them. So clearly there is a problem.

It is time for the black community leaders to step up and try to rectify this issue because if they don't, it's only going to get worse as future generations follow in their momma's footsteps. Only a black leader can do it too because white folks will be called racists - even if they are trying to help (our overly PC world really, really stinks).

Obama should have been the guy to do it, him being the first half black President and all. I would just love to hear him stand up in front of his teleprompter and give a speech to the black community about self reliance and family values - aimed at the 43%. A speech about working hard to get off of welfare and not depending on others to prop you up. That is something we'll never hear from him though. Not ever.

Instead, food stamp usage has soared under his miserable leadership and his relentless attacks on successful Americans. And you know what, its exactly what he wants. More govt dependence and more votes from the takers.

If he is re-elected, expect more of the same. Times ten.

allhans
24865
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allhans 01/18/12 - 09:19 am
0
0
Newt. Newt. Going to preAch

Newt. Newt. Going to preAch to the NAACP. MY, my.
But of course, Newt has all the answers, you don't need to even ask.

harley_52
25824
Points
harley_52 01/18/12 - 09:23 am
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0
EEL said "There is nothing

EEL said "There is nothing more reaffirming of the conservative white males' world view than seeing "black folk" trailing along behind them pushing mops and brooms."

Feminist and racist all at once.

You place the words "black folk" in quotes. Who are you quoting?

allhans
24865
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allhans 01/18/12 - 09:25 am
0
0
I knew Todd Palin has

I knew Todd Palin has endorsed Gingrich and it appears now Sarah has.

Chillen..You are so right, but how do we get him removed.

It is Romney? Gingrich? Gingrich scares me because he has a way of talking down to others, he is always the smartest man in the room in his own estimation, that would not go over very well in a national debate.
Paul would be 80 when he took office if he won, or so I hear...and that is no good.

So, where do we go?

burninater
9921
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burninater 01/18/12 - 09:26 am
0
0
Chillen, African Americans

Chillen, African Americans may be more likely to be on some form of public assistance, but the majority of recipients are rural whites. So, by exclusively focusing on the inner city and the African American population as Newt has, he is telegraphing to his audience that the racial component is more significant in his mind than the actual assistance usage data. And by vocally cheering these positions, his supporters telegraph the same message.

harley_52
25824
Points
harley_52 01/18/12 - 09:27 am
0
0
EEL said "Bruno: given the

EEL said "Bruno: given the chance to address the NAACP, do you suppose Gingrich would explain to them how so many of the African-Americans in the food stamps program are there because they lack a work ethic?"

It's not addressed to me, but I'll take a shot anyway.

Yes. And he should.

Little Lamb
48963
Points
Little Lamb 01/18/12 - 09:36 am
0
0
Chillen wrote: If you work

Chillen wrote:

If you work the food stamp recipient math, 43% of all black Americans are getting food stamps.

That may explain why many black Americans are not complaining about the incredible rise in grocery prices over the past three or four years.

Chillen
17
Points
Chillen 01/18/12 - 09:38 am
0
0
burninator, do you know what

burninator, do you know what percentage of whites are getting food stamps? There are more whites in America, so naturally there would be more recipients - but as a percentage of the race, I'll venture a guess to say that about 10% or less are getting food stamps.

Now, I'm not saying that they are not wrong for taking it too - if you've read my past posts, I believe ALL welfare should have a lifetime cap of 3-6 months. The way we are doing things is utterly ridiculous and not good for the long term health of our society.

I believe Newt is trying to help the black community which is rapidly spiraling into crisis. Have you seen the unemployment number for the black community? And they don't even count the welfare folks in that number. A lot of black people are out of work. It can't be a coincidence. They need help. From someone. PC aside.

harley_52
25824
Points
harley_52 01/18/12 - 09:40 am
0
0
Jobs I had worked at (for

Jobs I had worked at (for pay) by the time I was sixteen.

Neighborhood sidewalk/porch sweeper
Neighborhood lawn mower/leaf raker
Shoe shine boy at a barber shop
Paper boy
Golf course caddy
Farm laborer
Gas station attendant
Restaurant pizza chef

In these jobs I learned a work ethic. I did these jobs because they were my only source of money.

What jobs do inner city kids do these days to learn a work ethic. Why do they need money when the government fulfills their needs?

justthefacts
24985
Points
justthefacts 01/18/12 - 09:44 am
0
0
I find it interesting that

I find it interesting that the Liberals focus on the janitorial job. He also suggest working in the front office, library, etc. Also, interesting, when you read the hundreds of editorials condemning Newt, few argue the facts, only anger at his courage in stating them.

harley_52
25824
Points
harley_52 01/18/12 - 09:46 am
0
0
burninater said "So, by

burninater said "So, by exclusively focusing on the inner city and the African American population as Newt has, he is telegraphing to his audience that the racial component is more significant in his mind than the actual assistance usage data. And by vocally cheering these positions, his supporters telegraph the same message."

Only committed lefties will make that claim. Normal people see it for what it really is.....a message to all who have become so dependent on the government for survival. That blacks disproportionally suffer the lasting effects of the "great society" is a fact denied only by the same committed lefties who use it as a tool of racism.

Bruno
780
Points
Bruno 01/18/12 - 09:47 am
0
0
EEL, your generalization that

EEL, your generalization that African Americans lack a work ethic is so broad as to be pointless. It is also untrue. I would say that in any society people tend to do what they know. You can see this in instances where you have multi-generational family groups living in trailer parks and doing only enough to get by. This isn't limited to only one race. As I and and burninator have noted the largest percent of those on food stamps are white and rural.
I disagree with burninater concerning the "telegraphing" of a racial component since the context in which the statement was made was directly related to an issue concerning a segment of the population. See the second to last sentence in my previous post for clarification.
Simply put, "food stamp recipient" does not mean Black nor is it some secret code for black. It simply means "food stamp recipient".

effete elitist liberal
3191
Points
effete elitist liberal 01/18/12 - 09:52 am
0
0
harley_52: On G and the

harley_52: On G and the NAACP, of course he won't and he wouldn't, but hey, the conservative dream still lives.

Bruno
780
Points
Bruno 01/18/12 - 09:52 am
0
0
Chillen wrote: "burninator,

Chillen wrote: "burninator, do you know what percentage of whites are getting food stamps? There are more whites in America, so naturally there would be more recipients - but as a percentage of the race, I'll venture a guess to say that about 10% or less are getting food stamps."

You would be wrong. 33% of the people who receive food stamps are white 22% of the people who receive food stamps are black. (most recent census data) That isn't to say that 33% of white people receive food stamps and 22% of people who are black receive food stamps.

Interesting map can be found here.
http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2009/11/28/us/20091128-foodstamps.html

Chillen
17
Points
Chillen 01/18/12 - 09:53 am
0
0
"but hey, the conservative

"but hey, the conservative dream still lives."

Thank God, because its the only way our Republic will survive.

effete elitist liberal
3191
Points
effete elitist liberal 01/18/12 - 09:54 am
0
0
Bruno: my generalization? I

Bruno: my generalization? I am citing Newt Gingrich!

effete elitist liberal
3191
Points
effete elitist liberal 01/18/12 - 09:57 am
0
0
Chillen: context, my dear

Chillen: context, my dear sir, context. The dream / fantasy I am referring to is that Newt Gingrich, the current white conservative knight in shining armor, would ride into an NAACP and lecture black Americans on their lack of a work ethic.

Chillen
17
Points
Chillen 01/18/12 - 10:07 am
0
0
Bruno, that would not make me

Bruno, that would not make me wrong. Not at all. Read my post again, that you, yourself cut & paste "as a percentage of the race, I'll venture a guess to say that about 10% or less are getting food stamps."

I am asking for % of white recipients as a percentage of the white population. It's about 10%, or less.

I'm simply saying that there is a problem in America that needs fixing. It's going to take a lot of people, a lot of commitment and a lot of short term pain. SOMEONE needs to fix it but its being ignored (and celebrated by certain politicians). And its being stymied due to screams of racism and political correctness. Even when someone is trying to help.

(Addition to my post. I just did the math. It's 9.7% exactly. If Bruno's 33% is correct. So, 1 in 10 white citizens is on welfare and 4.5 out of 10 black citizens are on welfare - do you see the problem? Help is needed. Badly.)

effete elitist liberal
3191
Points
effete elitist liberal 01/18/12 - 10:03 am
0
0
But all of this after all is

But all of this after all is idle talk anyway. Even Newt has seen the writing on the wall, and after this Saturday in SC, the latest American reality show craze, aka the Republican primaries, will essentially be over. Then all you conservatives will have months to contemplate having Mitt "The Stormin'
Mormon" Romney as your candidate. Are you feeling the love yet?

Chillen
17
Points
Chillen 01/18/12 - 10:05 am
0
0
No effete elitist liberal,

No effete elitist liberal, I'm NOT feeling the love. But I'd vote for him because he's 100 times better than obama.

Are you feeling the love for the failed, America destroying community organizer? Is he really worthy of a second term in office?

justthefacts
24985
Points
justthefacts 01/18/12 - 10:06 am
0
0
I have no problem with

I have no problem with Romney's religion at all.

Chillen
17
Points
Chillen 01/18/12 - 10:08 am
0
0
I can't wait for the debates

I can't wait for the debates to start and see obama try to defend his record. Because now he actually has one. It's going to be poetic.

effete elitist liberal
3191
Points
effete elitist liberal 01/18/12 - 10:19 am
0
0
jtf: many, many Christian

jtf: many, many Christian conservative do not agree with you, which is very, very good news for President Obama. We may see the second coming of the "silent majority" next November....

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