Company weekend. Marie’s brother is taking his sons (7 and 9) to Kalamazoo’s Air Zoo for a cub/tiger scout outing. He dropped off his wife and daughter at our place last night. He’s coming back today. I mention it because Andy read the itinerary to me, which is accurately summarized: “Museum tour and rocket making from 7:30 to midnight, movie from midnight to 2:00, sleep, up at 6:30 for breakfast and rocket launch.”
Four-and-a-half hours of sleep for a pack of young boys. I was laughing (knowing I’d get a solid eight hours last night). Andy said, “Yeah, the pack leader’s a great guy, but he’s a little gung-ho.” Hitler was gung-ho, too. Maybe these are the Scout Nazis.
If you’re interested in the race issue, check out John McWhorter’s review of Larry Elder’s Stupid Black Men: How to Play the Race Card—and Lose. It has interesting facts and good insight. First, some facts:
Elder quotes James Q. Wilson’s 38 most important words for black Americans: “Finish high school, marry before having a child, and produce the child after the age of twenty. Only 8 percent of families who do this are poor; 79 percent of those who fail to do this are poor.” Few could deny the wisdom of that counsel, but many fail to see that it logically requires letting go of the racism fetish. As Elder puts it: “Racists do not prevent kids from studying, racists do not demand that men father children outside of wedlock.” And further: “Complete and total eradication of racism cannot instill the necessary moral values that create healthy, prosperous communities.”
Besides, Elder observes, “if racists hold blacks back, they’re doing a bad job.” In 2003, total earned income by blacks was $656 billion, a sum so large that this “black GDP—if blacks represented their own country—places them within the top sixteen countries in the world.”
Second, the insight:
The passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 suddenly left black people responsible for proving themselves before they had had a chance to overcome their internalized sense of inadequacy. After centuries of marginalization, this should not have been surprising. There were now two ways for a black person to make his way. He could embrace accountability and work to take advantage of the new opportunities. Or he could fashion a sense of legitimacy by playing the noble victim, exploiting white America’s new susceptibility to such postures.
That’s it for now. A writing deadline and out-of-town clients arriving later this morning call.