The Top 5 Issues Facing Black Americans by Taleeb Starkes
Spoiler Alert: race isn’t in the top five. The act of telling the truth about what ails blacks in America is taken as an act of war. Until we can name the problem, and identify concrete steps to find solutions, nothing will improve.
What are the five biggest issues facing blacks in America? Here’s my list.
Problem #5. The Victim Mentality
Nothing holds someone back more than seeing himself as a victim. Why? Because a victim is not responsible for his situation. Everything is someone else’s fault. And the victim sees little chance of improving his life. How can he get ahead if someone is holding him back? All this makes the victim unhappy, frustrated and angry.
This is how too many blacks see themselves – as victims. So much so that their victim status becomes their primary identity and their ruling ideology. I call it victimology. Unfortunately, many black churches preach this “victimology,” many black parents pass it on to their children, inner-city schools teach it to their students and the black media reinforce it. Meanwhile, the NAACP and other black grievance groups fundraise on it.
Problem #4. Lack of Diversity
Blacks repeatedly demand an “honest dialogue or debate about race.” But how can there ever be an honest dialogue about race between blacks and whites when there is virtually no honest dialogue between blacks and blacks? It’s hypocritical. And if a black doesn’t think, “whites are ultimately responsible for black people’s problems,” they’re labeled a “sell-out,” ”Uncle Tom,” or “race-traitor.”
As long as this type of groupthink exists, race-reverends of the Al Sharpton, Jesse Jackson type will continue to be celebrated while independent black thinkers such as Professors Thomas Sowell and Walter Williams will be shunned.
The honest race dialogue and debate — that first has to happen — is not between blacks and whites but between blacks and blacks. We demand diversity from others, but need to practice it ourselves where it really matters — in thought, opinion, and even political affiliation.
Problem #3. Urban Terrorism
As just about everyone knows, but too few talk about publicly, in majority black cities, violent black on black crime is rampant. A Department of Justice study from 1980-2008 revealed that blacks accounted for almost half of the nation’s homicide victims (47.4%) and more than half of the offenders (52.4%) all while only being 13% of America’s population.
The Tuskegee Institute conducted a study of all known lynchings of blacks that occurred between 1882-1968. During this 86-year span, which is essentially the post-Civil War era up to the Civil Rights era, 3,446 Blacks where reportedly lynched. Presently, black-on-black murder eclipses the number of blacks lynched over the course of 80 years roughly every six months.
Unbelievably, the culpability for this disproportionate amount of mayhem actually lies with a menacing 2-3% minority within the black populace. I call them urban terrorists. And since they’re literally spawned from problem #2, the black community protects them.
Problem #2. Proliferation of Baby Mamas
The disintegration of the nuclear family has led to an astronomical increase of single-mother households. According to the Moynihan Report, in 1965, nearly 25 percent of black children were born to unwed mothers. The report’s author Daniel Patrick Moynihan said this was a disaster in the making. He was, of course, vilified by so-called black leaders and their progressive allies. But he was right. Today the out of wedlock birth rate is nearly 75 percent. and even higher in some urban areas.
To be clear, Baby Daddies share this responsibility with Baby Mamas. Yet, while Baby Daddies are blamed and rarely shown compassion, Baby Mamas are rarely blamed and receive both compassion and support. This lopsided dynamic and the previously listed pathologies stem directly from the number one problem facing the black community…
Problem #1. Unquestioning Allegiance to so-called Progressive Policies
Unwavering loyalty to progressive, liberal policies is the primary reason these dire conditions persist. It both makes them possible and perpetuates them. It’s no coincidence that progressivism is the common thread that binds predominately black cities where single-parent homes, failing schools, rampant poverty and crime predominate.
Look at cities like Detroit, Philadelphia and Baltimore. They’ve been run by progressive Democrats for decades. If their liberal policies were at all effective, these cities should have become models of economic growth and prosperity. Instead, they’re models of dysfunction. By fostering and exploiting the victim mentality, discouraging self-examination, subsidizing baby-mamas, and making excuses for black thugs, so-called progressive policies don’t alleviate the problems that afflict the black community, they aggravate those problems.
You may have noticed that racism did not make the list. Why not? It’s simple: There will be no solution to the problems afflicting black America until more blacks recognize that the issues plaguing our community are ultimately self-inflicted.
Does racism exist? Sure. But there are other problems far more serious. And waiting until there are no more racists will mean waiting, and making excuses, forever.
I’m Taleeb Starkes for Prager University.