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HUD Secretary Speaks Against Black Victimhood

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posted on Jan, 26 2007 @ 08:40 PM
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Originally posted by df1
Remove the word "black" and your statement is just as accurate.


True.

I can't help but be amused to see the continued attacks on Mr. Jackson, I can only guess to discredit his message. You incorrectly state that his message is to not blame the system, but that's not at all what he's saying. Basically, he says that black people should stop blaming white people for their lot in life.

So, those of you who are 'against' Jackson, do you also disagree with his message? In other words, do you think white people are to blame?

There are several lengthy posts attacking his credibility. Okay, so we shouldn't believe something just because he says it. He's not credible. But what about his message? What about the idea of blaming white people? Do you disagree with him on that?




posted on Jan, 26 2007 @ 08:46 PM
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Originally posted by Nygdan
In the end, if a person wants to have kids, and the government is doling out support, well, then they're entitled to take the support and keep having kids. Also, what happens if you are a single mom, and poor, and have a kid? You need government help right? BUt what happens if you have another kid? Or three more? Are you worse off than before? I mean, to a good extent, there's no reason to not have mutliple kids when you are already on the bottom rung of the socio-economic ladder, you're not going to slip lower by having more kids. And at the same time, if you have one kid, you're still not going to advance up the ladder. Or even if you have none, you're not necessarily going to advance.

Emphasis added.

You are overlooking the most important individuals in this scenario - the children. They are being born into a live of poverty and neglect, and all that does is perpetuate the cycle of misery. The more kids you spawn out of wedlock, the more poor kids that flood the streets and the overworked school systems.

What does this lead to? Discussions such as this, where people who point out the root causes of the problem are castigated. Misguided blame because of political zealots and people who want to live in the past. Denial of problems because people cannot separate the man from the message.

And, unfortunately, more hungry, under-educated kids that will continue the cycle of misery because their role models are their mother or apologists who lie to them by saying it's because someone is holding them down.



posted on Jan, 26 2007 @ 09:37 PM
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As I was reading on-line, I came across this article by Algernon Austin and Jared Berstein from The Economics Policy Institute. It is worth a read. But, I would like to highlight a few aspects of it that are pertinent to the thread:


Don't Blame Black Culture

For decades, scholars and opinion makers have been seduced by cultural explanations for economic problems. Recently, comedian Bill Cosby has caught the bug, leading him to inveigh against aspects of black culture he views as intimately linked to problems among African-Americans, from poverty to crime and incarceration.[...]Yes, there are far more opportunities available to black Americans today, but the conclusion that racial discrimination is no longer a serious issue is simply not supported by the evidence.

In two recent studies, Princeton University sociologist Devah Pager showed that young black men who have played by the rules and have no criminal record are much less likely to be offered a job than similar white men. In fact, white men with criminal records had an equal or better chance of being hired than did young black men with no record. [...]Don't think for a nanosecond that we are satisfied with the progress that's been made. Even if black poverty remains low in historical terms, having a quarter of blacks in poverty is a national tragedy. But by creating an erroneous causal link between "bad culture" and black poverty, the "Cosby consensus" prevents the country from recognizing success and building on it to create the economic opportunities that are missing for too many African-Americans.

[...]

The record is clear: When economic opportunities are available to black Americans, they take them. When opportunities are scarce, they fall behind, and culture has very little to do with it.




[edit on 26-1-2007 by ceci2006]



posted on Jan, 26 2007 @ 10:01 PM
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Although this was written at the time Bill Cosby said his remarks, this pretty much provides an answer to what Alphonso Jackson said. After all, Mr. Jackson is part of the "cultural blame" bandwagon that disparages poor people while making his handlers look holier than thou.

Earl Ofari Hutchinson wrote a very interesting piece about the "Blame Game" that is happening on the Working Poor. I think that this is also worth a read because it does get to the heart of the issue in a very fascinating way. However, I will highlight a few interesting excerpts that are cogent to this discussion:


Mr. Cosby, Stop Blaming the Victim

Cosby’s remarks are not just offering grist for conservative talking heads; they blame the victim, giving credence to the idea that all the problems of poor blacks are self-inflicted. Many employers in a study published by the Brookings Institution, for instance, said that they wouldn’t hire young blacks because they believed they were lazier, more crime-prone and uneducated.

Instead of blaming the victim and encouraging old stereotypes, Cosby should be directing his ire at the root causes and demanding action. Where was he, for example, during the Democratic presidential primary debates? With the arguable exceptions of John Edwards and Howard Dean, the white Democratic presidential candidates were mute on issues such as urban investment, health care for the uninsured, fixing lousy inner-city public schools, racial profiling, affirmative action, the racial disparities in prison sentencing and racially biased drug laws.

Cosby didn’t invent the shopworn stereotype that poor blacks, and indeed the poor in general, are their own worst enemy. And few would deny that there are steps that black Americans should be taking within their own communities to help improve conditions. But Cosby is a recognized and endearing icon, and when he speaks, people listen. In this case, what they heard from him only reinforces negative beliefs about the black poor.


[edit on 26-1-2007 by ceci2006]



posted on Jan, 26 2007 @ 10:05 PM
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Originally posted by ceci2006
In two recent studies, Princeton University sociologist Devah Pager showed that young black men who have played by the rules and have no criminal record are much less likely to be offered a job than similar white men. In fact, white men with criminal records had an equal or better chance of being hired than did young black men with no record....

BS!
It's all relative.
Ceci, I do computer graphics and years ago I had the job of hiring new artists.
When you came to me, I didn't care if you were ugly, pretty, big-boobed, muscled, black, white, asian, pimpled, gay, whatever....the person I hired got the job because they dislayed the most talent. At that point in time, I had an art room of about 10 artists that was half black, half white....oh, and one Korean (she was an awesome logo designer). In fact, I had hired an older, black, Christian gentleman (college educated and married with kids) who stayed with us for about 3 months. He left our company and a little while later I got a call from the FBI at work one day. Guess what? They were just doing background checks and wanted to know what this guy was like, was he a good worker, did he follow direction well, was he easy to get along with, etc, etc (the FBI does this check on "all" employees they are thinking of hiring). Anyway, I gave the guy a 4-star review. He did impeccably neat work, he was friendly and courteous. I missed his talent in my art room. I wanted him to advance and do great. Hell, he had just gotten a better job than me.

What I am saying is anyone can be a success in life. You just have to want to grab life by the horns and go for it.......but not everyone succeeds. I know plenty of "unsuccessful" white folk, trust me. Life is what you make it. I've worked with tons of talented black and minority people who have gone on to higher places than me. They went there because they had dreams and goals.

This, "we're being held down" issue is a lie....it's an excuse.
I don't buy it.

[edit on 26-1-2007 by rocknroll]



posted on Jan, 26 2007 @ 10:11 PM
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rocknroll, I am glad that you have a culturally diverse workplace. That speaks to your character in terms of making it so.

I also believe that people can be whatever they want to be.

But, I think the article was focusing on societal trends in discounting "the mesage" that Jackson and others have been pummeling the Black Community with. The article exposes the fact that racism and privilege is still a factor.

That is something you can't ignore, especially when there are still workplaces in America that still do not "look like a multicultural America".

All in all, the article specifically focused on the point that culture is not to blame, but economics and society play into workplace opportunities. How the poor respond societally is especially at the center of this idea brought forth by both authors.

Thank you for the wonderful comments, though. I appreciate your respect.


[edit on 26-1-2007 by ceci2006]



posted on Jan, 26 2007 @ 10:25 PM
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Originally posted by ceci2006
The article exposes the fact that racism and privilege is still a factor whether you think it is bs or not.

That is something you can't ignore, especially when there are still workplaces in America that still do not "look like America".

Thank you for the wonderful comments, though. I appreciate your respect.

[edit on 26-1-2007 by ceci2006]


Thanks. That's cool.....but
I really think it has alot ot do with where you live.
Sometimes racism is colloquial.
I remember I took a bus ride when I was 20 from Baltimore to Orlando (job hunting).
The bus was mixed black and white.
I remember we stopped late at night at some point at a Mom & Pop soda shop.
We were in Georgia, in the boonies.
A bunch of us went inside the store and were buying things.
I was appalled at the way the whites behind the counter treated the black customers (who were acting no different than the white customers). The cashiers (white) would not even make eye contact with the black customers at all. Totally stern, unhappy looks on their faces (almost scowls). I remember thinking, "Wow, this is how the South treats blacks." Guess I might have been stereotyping a bit. It was weird. Something I had never really experienced. But, the average Joe white guy in Baltimore doesn't treat blacks like this. And there's the toss of the coin, some black areas in Baltimore are very dangerous for a white man to tread in, not if he values his life. And other black neighborhoods are totally safe for whites.

Sometimes it seems like racism and discrimination pop up in different pockets, different areas. Some areas don't have it. Some do. Neither of us is perfect. Sometimes it's white against black, sometimes it's black against white..............sometimes we get along fine.

....this "skin thing". If we were all blind and couldn't see the color of eachother's skin, what would we find next to divide?



posted on Jan, 26 2007 @ 10:26 PM
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Originally posted by rocknroll

Originally posted by ceci2006
In two recent studies, Princeton University sociologist Devah Pager showed that young black men who have played by the rules and have no criminal record are much less likely to be offered a job than similar white men. In fact, white men with criminal records had an equal or better chance of being hired than did young black men with no record....

BS!
It's all relative.

Not only is it BS, it is wrong.

I don't know if Austin and Bernstein deliberately represented Ms. Pager's findings, or if they were trying to shoehorn her words to fit in their preconceived conclusions. They state the following:


In two recent studies, Princeton University sociologist Devah Pager showed that young black men who have played by the rules and have no criminal record are much less likely to be offered a job than similar white men. In fact, white men with criminal records had an equal or better chance of being hired than did young black men with no record.



The actual conclusion reached by Ms. Pager is significantly different:


The Mark of Race. Among the findings from Pager’s field experiment, one of the most troubling relates to the impact of race on employment outcomes. Employers for entry-level jobs were just as willing—if not more—to consider a white applicant with a felony conviction than a black applicant with no criminal history.

www.princeton.edu...



posted on Jan, 26 2007 @ 10:33 PM
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Originally posted by jsobecky Employers for entry-level jobs were just as willing--if not more--to consider a white applicant with a felony conviction than a black applicant with no criminal history


This statement from Ms. Pager's study reveals the obvious:

Employers were more willing hire white applicants with a felony conviction.

If that is the meaning of that part of the study, the authors were right on.

Black people might have been considered, but employers were more prone to consider whites with a felony record. That would mean that whites with a felony record are more appealing to employers than blacks with no record at all.

That definitely shows bias and is very problematic, to say the least.

But that was not the meaning of the article at all from Austin and Bernstein. It was all about analysing the message and what it stands for: an attack on the culture of a group of people and why such attacks fail due to societal and economic reasons.

However, I was more interested in how the articles posted responded to "the message" as it was put earlier in the thread.

But, thank you for the in-depth analysis over one small kernel of the larger picture.



[edit on 26-1-2007 by ceci2006]



posted on Jan, 26 2007 @ 10:57 PM
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rocknroll, I'm sorry I missed your latest post.


Originally quoted by rocknroll
Thanks. That's cool.....but
I really think it has alot ot do with where you live.
Sometimes racism is colloquial.


You're right. Sometimes, it does have to do with where you live. Some places have more racial tension than others.


I was appalled at the way the whites behind the counter treated the black customers (who were acting no different than the white customers). The cashiers (white) would not even make eye contact with the black customers at all. Totally stern, unhappy looks on their faces (almost scowls). I remember thinking, "Wow, this is how the South treats blacks." Guess I might have been stereotyping a bit. It was weird. Something I had never really experienced. But, the average Joe white guy in Baltimore doesn't treat blacks like this. And there's the toss of the coin, some black areas in Baltimore are very dangerous for a white man to tread in, not if he values his life. And other black neighborhoods are totally safe for whites.


What you experienced is an aspect of life for a lot of Americans of color. In a previous thread, I wrote about my experiences in Nebraska. In that stance, I was like one of those Black customers being eyeballed by not only the people behind the counter, but in the entire restaurant.

But, it is important to note that not all places are like this. And I've been to a lot of places in which people were very lovely to be around. They treated you with dignity, respect and civility.


Sometimes it seems like racism and discrimination pop up in different pockets, different areas. Some areas don't have it. Some do. Neither of us is perfect. Sometimes it's white against black, sometimes it's black against white..............sometimes we get along fine.


That's how it should be. On an individual level, people do treat each other as people. That is one the most remarkable aspects of humanity.

But societally, there are things that need to be fixed so that the relations between different walks of life not only are treated humanely, but with respect, mercy and justice.


....this "skin thing". If we were all blind and couldn't see the color of eachother's skin, what would we find next to divide?


I know what you mean. But, unfortunately, history, politics and society have not caught up to this beautiful notion. There are still aspects of society to be fixed in order to ensure true equality, not one prescribed by demagogues.

I thank you for your wonderful comments and again, for your kindness.



[edit on 26-1-2007 by ceci2006]



posted on Jan, 26 2007 @ 11:26 PM
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But, thank you for the in-depth analysis over one small kernel of the larger picture.

And thank you for cherrypicking one statement that suits your agenda.



posted on Jan, 27 2007 @ 02:45 AM
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In the Washington Post, Michael Erik Dyson critically analyzes "the message" in his article by taking apart Bill Cosby's "blame the poor" tour. Since Jackson's message is similar to Cosby's, it is again appropriate for this thread to post some excerpts for discussion:


The Injustice Bill Cosby Won't See

It's often difficult to point out just how harmful that sentiment is, because most black folk do believe strongly in taking their destiny into their own hands. They believe in hard work and moral decency. They affirm the need for education and personal discipline. When they hear Cosby say that poor black folk should go to work, stay out of jail, raise their children properly and make sure they go to school, they nod their heads in agreement.

But it's one thing to say that personal responsibility is crucial to our survival. It's another to pretend that it's the only thing that matters. The confusion between the two positions is what makes Cosby's blame-the-poor tour so destructive. By convincing poor blacks that their lot in life is purely of their own making, Cosby draws on harsh conservative ideas that overlook the big social factors that continue to reinforce poverty: dramatic shifts in the economy, low wages, chronic underemployment, job and capital flight, downsizing and outsourcing, and crumbling inner-city schools.

None of these can be overcome by the good behavior of poor blacks. As historian Robin D.G. Kelley argues, "All the self-help in the world will not eliminate poverty or create the number of good jobs needed to employ the African American community." Furthermore, Cosby's insistence that race has little to do with the circumstances of the black poor pleases right-wing pundits who believe his denial is a sign of mature black leadership.


The Just Democracy Blog has an interesting story concerning Mr. Jackson's "message" of "cultural blaming". The author presents an interesting commentary on the HUD Secretary's words:


Leading in the Wrong Direction

All of this is even more disturbing, given the fact that Jackson is the head of a government agency that is supposed to be working to provide affordable housing to the people that need it the most, many of whom happen to be minorities. How can Jackson do this job with any sort of success if he cannot even see the overt racism and social inequities that plague the United States, and holds no respect for the Civil Rights Movement?

Nowhere can Jackson’s motives be seen clearer than in post-Katrina New Orleans, where HUD, under Jackson’s direction, wants to demolish the city’s four largest public housing units-depriving thousands of poor, mainly African-American families of the right to return to their homes.

As an African-American man of power in the United States, Alphonso Jackson is in a position to create positive change. However, he has made it crystal clear that he has no interest in doing so


[edit on 27-1-2007 by ceci2006]



posted on Jan, 27 2007 @ 03:19 AM
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This interesting piece in Counterpunch analyzes Mr. Jackson's attitudes, especially when they run afoul of his duties as HUD secretary. The article focuses on Mr. Jackson's opening remarks as HUD secretary by stating that "being poor is a state of mind". This especially helps cement the notion that Jackson's comments and attitudes reflect on "blaming the poor" in manner and in deed.

One has to ask how can the poor have a "leg up" when even the HUD secretary does not help to provide them with adequate housing?


The Frowning Face of Compassionate Conservatism


In a speech at the National Press Club lunch on June 17,Mr. Jackson said that in the United States "Rental housing is affordable and plentiful." In making that statement he'd not read the State of the Nation's Housing report issued one week earlier by the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University. It found that nearly one-third of all households spend 30% or more of their incomes on housing and 13% spend 50% or more. Almost two million households live in units described as severely inadequate. HUD"s own Worst Case Housing Needs says 5.07 million families have worst case housing needs meaning they are very low income, face severe cost or quality problems in their homes and don't receive housing assistance. It says that "worsening shortages of housing affordable and available to extremely-low-income renters. . . . show the underlying gap between demand and supply continues."

According to the National Low Income Housing Coalition, on a national basis, only 43 rental housing units are affordable and available for every 100 extremely low income families who need them. Even if those statistics had been seen by Mr. Jackson, they'd not have troubled him. As he explained in his first appearance before the House Financial Services Committee as Secretary: "being poor is a state of mind." That said, it's really hard to get terribly upset about the fact that those with a bad state of mind don't have nice places to live. They don't need new housing-they need attitude adjustments. Thanks to the Bush administration, that's all they're likely to get.




[edit on 27-1-2007 by ceci2006]



posted on Jan, 27 2007 @ 05:32 AM
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It seems that this thread has taken a turn from discrediting A. Jackson's words because of his alleged poor character, to an attempt at discrediting Bill Cosby's similar message by claiming that it is "destructive". We are offered random quotes and opinions as proof.

The first step in discrediting Mr. Cosby's message is to label his efforts with a pejorative tag, in this case "blame the poor tour" is used.


Originally posted by ceci2006
In the Washington Post, Michael Erik (sic) Dyson critically analyzes "the message" in his article by taking apart Bill Cosby's "blame the poor" tour. Since Jackson's message is similar to Cosby's, it is again appropriate for this thread to post some excerpts for discussion:




The Injustice Bill Cosby Won't See



It's often difficult to point out just how harmful that sentiment is, because most black folk do believe strongly in taking their destiny into their own hands. They believe in hard work and moral decency. They affirm the need for education and personal discipline. When they hear Cosby say that poor black folk should go to work, stay out of jail, raise their children properly and make sure they go to school, they nod their heads in agreement.


Harmful? Get an education, raise your kids right, set a good example, lead by discipline. These things are considered harmful? So are we to conclude that dropping out of school, going to jail, and raising kids without a father's presence are beneficial?


But it's one thing to say that personal responsibility is crucial to our survival. It's another to pretend that it's the only thing that matters. The confusion between the two positions is what makes Cosby's blame-the-poor tour so destructive.

Destructive. Another extremely poor choice of words. Incomplete? Maybe. But destructive? Ridiculous.


By convincing poor blacks that their lot in life is purely of their own making, Cosby draws on harsh conservative ideas that overlook the big social factors that continue to reinforce poverty: dramatic shifts in the economy, low wages, chronic underemployment, job and capital flight, downsizing and outsourcing, and crumbling inner-city schools.

Once again, Mr. Dyson is spreading the notion that the quality of life blacks enjoy is beyond their control, and that they are at the mercy of much larger political and socio-economic factors that blacks can never overcome, no matter how hard they try.


None of these can be overcome by the good behavior of poor blacks. As historian Robin D.G. Kelley argues, "All the self-help in the world will not eliminate poverty or create the number of good jobs needed to employ the African American community." Furthermore, Cosby's insistence that race has little to do with the circumstances of the black poor pleases right-wing pundits who believe his denial is a sign of mature black leadership.

And Cosby never said that living an individually admirable life will cure unemployment. These factors are interjected by Dyson because he has an agenda: to sell books and to continue the cycle of poverty and dependence of poor blacks so that he, Dyson, has job security.

Poor blacks aren't going to read Dyson's book. Educated blacks may. So what is Dyson's purpose for belittling Cosby's message? It's obvious - he wants to install shame and guilt in those blacks who are successful.

Edit: BB code

[edit on 27-1-2007 by jsobecky]



posted on Jan, 27 2007 @ 10:39 AM
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I thought this topic was not about Bill Cosby... until it becomes convenient, then it IS about Bill Cosby... and Pager and Austin and Bernstein and Hutchinson and Dyson and all manner of other people in an apparent effort to distract us from the original message...


Getting back to the Jackson piece and the message of the article... Please show me in the Jackson article where he "blames the victim" or hops on the "cultural blame bandwagon" or "disparages poor people". These accusations of his message are totally fabricated.

If I'm wrong, show me.

He talks about the perpetuation of the victim ideology, he suggests that blacks focus on the problems they have in their communities and work to solve them in a positive way. His actual main point is that the black so-called leaders such as Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton are exacerbating the problem rather than solving it. He refuses to accept the mindset of victim. He's working to get low-income families into homes.

It seems that many inferences are being made here in this thread about his alleged attack on black people when there isn't ONE in the entire article. It's all made up, a fantasy.

If I'm wrong, show me.

He may be way off base with his opinions and I'm not saying he's a saint. Far from it. But the things being said about him and his message here are simply lies. They don't exist. Not once does he do the terrible things that he's being accused of here. He doesn't blame blacks.

"Blame-the-poor" has become a battle cry against those who call for personal responsibility. What gall some people have to ask that we all take responsibility for ourselves, our lives and our children! How dare they! How dare Bill Cosby (if it's all right if I talk about him) demand that parents take an active role in raising their children once again.

Cosby has a very strong, stern (tough love) message and in my opinion (which I'm allowed to have and express) it would do good for every parent to listen to it, regardless of race. As has been said, white people have these problems, too. White kids are in jail, dealing drugs, shooting people, getting pregnant. Who can white people blame for the school shootings?

If I'm wrong, show me.

The only thing A. Jackson says about blame is that whites aren't to blame for the blacks' problems. That's not to say that racism doesn't exist. It does. But until people, any people, take responsibility and decide to raise their children right instead of teaching them a victim mentality, nothing's going to change.

I ask again, a very simple question. If you don't agree with Jackson and his message to not blame white people, then are you saying white people are to blame?



posted on Jan, 27 2007 @ 11:38 AM
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double post

[edit on 27-1-2007 by HarlemHottie]



posted on Jan, 27 2007 @ 11:38 AM
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Originally posted by Benevolent Heretic
If you don't agree with Jackson and his message to not blame white people, then are you saying white people are to blame?




A straw man argument is a logical fallacy based on misrepresentation of an opponent's position. To "set up a straw man" or "set up a straw-man argument" is to create a position that is easy to refute, then attribute that position to the opponent.
...
1. Present a misrepresentation of the opponent's position, refute it, and pretend that the opponent's actual position has been refuted.

Wiki


edit to add: sorry for my brevity. got a busy day ahead. will be back later.


[edit on 27-1-2007 by HarlemHottie]



posted on Jan, 27 2007 @ 12:04 PM
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I know you're busy
I hope you're having a great day.


You're going to have to explain to me how my specific question is a straw man argument. I'm not stating that if you don't agree with Jackson then you do blame white people. I'm asking something very specific about his message.

I'm not clear on whether the discrediting of him in this thread has anything to do with his message about blame or not in your mind. I have separated the man from the message. This message is given by many people besides him.

The message is "Don't blame white people. Take responsibility". Since some here have gone to such great lengths to discredit him, I'm asking are you also discrediting his entire message or does part of his message have some merit?

I'm asking a very specific question. I see the possible responses as:

I disagree with A Jackson on this specific point. I do think white people are to blame.

OR

I agree with A Jackson on this specific point. I don't think white people are to blame.

There is no straw man. Just a question.



posted on Jan, 27 2007 @ 01:58 PM
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If one were to read the articles closely instead of "cherry-picking", then you would see that your answers lie there.

And yes, the "message" deserves to be discredited because in the opinion of some of the articles, it is a "blame game" on the cultural standards of Blacks which is highly appealing to the dominant culture.

Except that it has nothing to do with blaming white people. Jackson's message blames Black poor people. Cosby's message is similar to Jackson's. So, knowing that they have been saying the same things, it is helpful to get to the crux of Jackson's argument by taking the essence of it and critically analyse it piece by piece.

And especially how he treats the poor in his position as a HUD secretary, he does not deserve to tell anyone anything--even in a patriarchal, finger-waving manner.

However, HH's proposal of a straw man argument is very good. Because Jackson's (as well as Cosby's) premise of his speech is based on one.

The other question to ask is whether people are solely concerned about the "not blaming white people" part of the message--opposed to the fact that A. Jackson (and Cosby similarly) disparages (in an elitist tone) poor Black people in their speeches.

So, why be concerned about Black people at all, if one were to be solely focusing on the admonition for Black folk "not to blame white people" ?

And of course, some would think the criticism to be fabricated--especially when they soley focus on the "blame white people" part and not of the social, political and economic conditions behind the disparaging remarks.



[edit on 27-1-2007 by ceci2006]



posted on Jan, 27 2007 @ 02:03 PM
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Originally posted by Benevolent Heretic
Actually, his message was not to blame white people, not the system. [/quote
White people = the man
the man = the system

No?


The system keeping black people down is a very real and true issue. That's where the focus needs to be, not on white people.


www.newsmax.com...
Rather than confronting real issues that face blacks, African-American leaders suggest that "it's racism that's stopping everything that we're doing," Jackson said.

"They are in the business of making excuses," he said. "White folks have nothing to do with the fact that seven out of every 10 black children born in this country are born out of wedlock,"


Individual people have nothing to do with another individual's particular problems or status. BUT, "whites", as a sociological class, have created a system that is responsible for the problems that exist today. I think that its a "too fine irrelevancy" to argue over whether its 'whites' or 'not whites, but the system' that is the problem, most of the time.
If we're discusing how to fix the problems, then it becomes more important; we wouldn't fix the problems by 'getting rid of whites', for example. But what black leaders are calling for that? Even Sharpton ain't calling for that, and Jesse Jackson certainly isn't. Those are the guys that
Alphonso Jackson are saying is the problem.


"I never went to school with my brothers and sisters of the lighter hue until I got off to college," Jackson, a lawyer, said. "But I'm sitting here," he said, referring to his cabinet position, which controls a budget of $32 billion a year. "And I'm sitting here because I believe that the American system might not be the panacea, but it's the best system that I've ever been able to live in."

By extension, he is saying that there is no problem. Infact, he is saying that if blacks have been kept down, its simply because of racism amoung whites, not flaws in the system itself.

I mean, if anything, he's saying that blacks aren't being kept down, because the system is fair and fine, and there's not a problem of racism either, so its just that some blacks are incompetent losers, and thats why they are poor. Or that they are theives, who'd rather take welfare that they don't deserve, than work for a living.


By characterizing blacks as victims, making excuses for them, and suggesting that they cannot advance themselves without reliance on the government, black leaders exacerbate the problems that blacks face


So again, he is saying, the only way that things will get better for blacks is if each indivudual picks himself up and becomes successful, and that the system is 'fairly geared' (more or less) torwards that, and that racism in general won't prevent them from doing so.








Rather than confronting real issues that face blacks, African-American leaders suggest that "it's racism that's stopping everything that we're doing," Jackson said.

I have never seen these guys say 'if there wasn't any racism ongoing today, we'd be fine'. When a bunch of cops gun down a black guy for little reason, they note, rather accurately, that racism had a hand in it, even if it was just to make the officers think that blacks by their nature or by their culture, are more dangerous and more of a threat, etc. Thats hardly the same as saying 'blacks live corralled into urban centers because of current racism'. Its a flaw in the system that has resulted in their statistically and demographically being born into the situation, and black leaders want those issues to be addressed and corrected, to make the playing field more level.


"I think in 2006 to say that everything is the fault of our brothers and sisters of the lighter hue is ridiculous."

Black leaders aren't saying this, but they also aren't saying that there are no problems from modern, ongoing racism, let alone the flaws in the system that continue today that were created in the first place by racism.


But what about his message?

His message simply doesn't make sense. 'Don't blame racism for your situation'.
Why? Racism DID result in the situation. And to a degree it does perpetuate it. So it can't be objected to on the grounds that its false. The only other option is that, even though its true, noting this does nothing, and A. Jackson is actually saying that it makes things worse to point this out.
That might be a good reason to not point it out, if it were true, but its not.
When have blacks ever gotten a worse deal by pointing out actual ongoing racism? If a person wants to sit there and say 'you know what, the world is racist, and it doesn't matter what I do, because I am a victim of racism, and will allways be such, so why try to do anything at all anyway', then we'd correctly identify that person as a fool. Racism exists and it is a problem, but its hardly insurmountable, and hardly an excuse to not do anything about it. How many people that are followers of Jesse Jackson or Al Sharpton are actually saying 'I am not going to do anthing about the problems that exist'?????? I'd wager that their followers are the least likely people to do nothing. THere's always going to be losers who give up and blame it on 'racism being so strong that I couldn't win if I tried', but having black leaders point out that racism is a huge problem isn't causing that.



jsobecky
They are being born into a live of poverty and neglect, and all that does is perpetuate the cycle of misery

Indeed, so the question arises, why have them? When the europeans came to america, they first used native indians as slaves. BUt they proved unsuitable, they became depressed, got sickly, and didn't reproduce. All slave populations, in fact, in history, have done that. Thats why slaves are usually war captives, like amoung the greeks and the romans. ANd as a result, the populations that were taken into slavery simply died out because of it. But blacks were stronger than that, they didn't say "I am a slave, life is not worth it" and fade away into non exsistence. They persevered and kept their population alive. IF they hadn't, none of the blacks around today would even exist. Life WAS worth it.
So why should blacks now decide not to exist anymore, merely because they are poor?

Discussions such as this, where people who point out the root causes of the problem are castigated.

The root cause goes back to slavery. The US denied them freedom, corralled them into urban centers, and then neglected those centers and allowed them to decay.
Its not the fault of the blacks that they continue to exist. Their non-existence isn't much of a solution to the problem.




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