Friday, April 13, 2007

Rutgers Vs Duke and racial slurs

There were two stories this week that highlight the racial divide in this country. One that received the most attention was the remarks of Imus regarding the Rutgers women's basketball team. The second was the dismissal of all charges against the Duke Lacrosse players.

The Rutgers women's team's feelings were hurt by Imus' remarks. I find Imus repulsive and don't enjoy listening to angry people vent, so I have no concern about him being fired. On the other hand, the story where real harm was caused is being largely ignored. Those 3 Duke Lacrosse players have had their lives irreparably harmed by racism far greater than anything that Imus did. Their names will live forever on the Internet in infamy and they have over $3M in legal fees to pay off. Yet the press sees racism only in the Rutgers story.

I dated a black woman in college and when I later married, my ex and I adopted a black daughter and a Hispanic son. During the last 35 years I have never been subjected to racial remarks from whites, yet have been subjected to lots of racial slurs from blacks in regards to dating a black woman or adopting a black child (and by the way these remarks have come from the "tolerant" Northeast - not while I lived in the "racist" South).

The worst of the bigots in my mind is Al Sharpton of Tawana Brawley fame, with Jesse Jackson a close second. Sharpton inflamed the whole Duke episode and while demanding Imus' firing, has yet to apologize to the Duke players. And he never will, because there is a double standard for race in this country at the moment. No doubt in my mind that prior to the 1960's blacks were discriminated against, wrongly jailed and despised by many whites. But the pendulum has swung far past center at the moment and white males are paying the price today.

There is still lots of racial imbalance today but I believe, as does Bill Cosby and others, that it has more to do with black culture than white racism. A culture that celebrates gangsta rappers who denigrate women as "ho's" and refers to other blacks as "niggas" keeps blacks suppressed far more than what any white person is doing today. The Bible teaches us that "we are what we think about" and if the typical black male teenager is regarding women as ho's, it' no surprise that 70% of black women are single and that the same percentage of black children are born out of wedlock.

I don't believe in the whole victim culture that is gaining ground in our society. Everybody wants to be a victim and few want to take responsibility for their words or actions. No group plays the victim role better than American born blacks today (black immigrants don't - think Colin Powell). I'm often criticized by blacks because my daughter is not exposed to black culture. But the truth is black culture right now is sick and whites are complicit in enabling this sickness. It reminds me of alcoholics and co-dependents. Race relations in this country will only get healthy when both sides are able to speak and act truthfully about all of the problems - not just white racism.

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