Re: Moral Poverty Cost Blacks in New Orleans
Thank you Veritas, your cool, level-headed, logical and well thought out post was most welcome.
I have a problem with knee-jerk reactions like Lex's.
The black people I grew up with would have thanked him politely for his response on their behalf and then told him they could very well speak for themselves.
Wouldn't be afraid to bet that the Reverend who wrote the article I posted had parents like that. They would have considered those who felt it necessary to champion THEIR cause the racists.
Having been born in the deep South on a farm, with black neighbors down the road as well as white, my playmates were black and white. At least once a month when it was warm we'd have Sunday dinner (lunch to you Yankees) spread on a big old long board table under a huge oak tree in the front yard and the neighbors brought whatever they wanted to add to the mix. My all-time favorite was sweet potato pie so my black "Aunt" Annie made sure that there was at least one sweet potato pie on that table and that I got the first piece. I loved her with all my heart; her lap was my first choice for a place to sit when I was small. She had more love in her than anyone I've ever known and she lavished it on her family and all those lucky enough to call her friend. When she laughed I'd have sworn it started at her toes.
Her daughter, 3 months my senior and never let me forget it, would tease me and say, "Come here little girl and let me brush your hair." When I was young my hair was white as cotton and fine as cat hair. She was fascinated by it; her favorite pastime was brushing, braiding and sticking flowers into her finished product. I endured it because it make her happy. We drew and colored together, played with our paper dolls, played Hide and Seek and Tag, and shared a mutual animosity for our younger brothers who were always tearing up our playhouses of mud and broomstraw.
She knew my cousins, I knew her cousins. We liked each other best of all but we all played together.
I realize this is probably Greek to those of you whose knowledge is limited to casual acquaintance or acculturation. It may not fit your idea of how things were for some, maybe not all, of us who lived it. You have my deepest sympathy.
Aunt Annie would have thrown the likes of Jessie Jackson and Al Sharpton out of her house with an epitath of "black trash," her standards were high and her children lived up to them. She could be as formidable as Mother Nature and you knew not to mess with Mother Nature.
When we supply excuses for why blacks fail or jump to their defense too quickly when no offense is intended, aren't we being racist? I was brought up to think that if you expected nothing from someone, that was usually what you got.
When whites fail, they fail. Nobody hesitates to say that they were lazy or drunks or dopeheads or "shiftless," whatever. We seem to feel obliged to pronounce racism as the first and foremost reason why blacks fail. It sets up a straw man for them to fight against when their focus and energies should be elsewhere. It also provides a ready excuse not to try as hard.
If you look hard enough for something, you will find it, even if you have to create it.