I Have A Dream...
I have a dream…
Over the past several days I have listened to bits and pieces of speeches from all manner of “civil rights personalities” as well as numerous politicians and three Democrat Presidents during the memorial services up to and including the 50th Anniversary Celebration on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. While a few of their words expressed a bit of honest self-reflection on why some in the black minority have not achieved the “big dream”, most of the rhetoric was a screeching litany of programs and cures that would magically fix everything if there was just enough money thrown at it.
I actually felt repulsed listening to it all, realizing that Martin Luther King Jr.’s speech was about giving the “Negro” a level playing field and an equal shot at whatever they wanted to pursue compared to anyone else. No, I take that back… it was not about “giving” them a level playing field, but removing the barriers thereto.
I think that an honest assessment of the past 50 years would reveal that within the parameters of his dream, we have actually arrived. But like many successes, the goal posts have been moved to suit those invested in the cure.
Think about it: In many ways, black is the new white. Interracial marriages are not even rare anymore, and most young white kids emulate the “urban” style in fashion, music and even speech. Sadly, many successful African Americans try to hide their success by dumbing down or hiding their affluence behind gated walls. When the successful look and act like the downtrodden, then what becomes the marker of success? Failure?
Putting affirmative action aside, I don’t know any business people who wouldn't hire a qualified minority for a position, especially in light of the fact that it is very difficult to find qualified people of any color. I could go on, but I challenge you to honestly find something today, that specifically denies entry or access based purely upon the color of someone’s skin.
Do not confuse that with a black person or a Hispanic not getting a job or feeling ‘discriminated against’. I think that many cases of this type of “discrimination” could be easily reclassified to something other than racial discrimination with a simple test. If you took that same person who feels rejected due to racism and do nothing more than change their skin pigmentation to white and their face to that of a typical-looking Caucasian, but leave everything else the same, would they get the job, the date, the taxicab, or the furtive glance?
If the clothing is ghetto, the hair unkempt, the walk slovenly, the neighborhood filthy, the attitude cocky, the tattoos numerous but if the guy is white, and he gets the job, then it might be discrimination. If not, then maybe the reason for the rejection needs to be reevaluated.
It is often easier to blame the bogeyman of racial discrimination on one's inability to move forward than to realize that it might just not be because of their race. Newsflash: white people with no credit history have a difficult time getting any sort of loan. Yes, banks discriminate... against people with no money!
Many of the myriad speakers at the events spoke the same line “if Dr. King was alive today he would have wanted X, Y or Z”. These people don’t know what Dr. King would have wanted. They are projecting their wants into that of the revered civil rights leader. Whenever I hear “he would have wanted” I ignore the rest of the sentence.
Dr. King eloquently expressed what he wanted on many occasions and basically we have achieved what he wanted. Maybe even gone a bit overboard in order to repair past harmss. Fifty years later, most of those truly harmed by the discrimination of Jim Crow are old or have passed away. We are now two generations into the repair phase. Perhaps the speakers should have reflected upon how long Dr. King would have said is long enough? How long do you give someone a chance to succeed before you throw up your hands and say “I tried”? How long does a parent run behind their child, pushing their bike without training wheels before they let go so that the child can ride free?
The speakers, up to and including the President, have transmuted Dr. King’s words and vision to include dreaming for ever larger numbers of social needs, including voting rights with NO positive ID, free food, free shelter, free water, free (aka affordable) education (pre-K through post-grad), free (aka affordable) health insurance, unlimited unemployment insurance, redistribution of wealth, and the all-encompassing “social justice”. Gays, lesbians, trans-genders, bi-sexuals, illegal immigrants, and people that can’t figure out how to use a Macintosh have all jumped on the “I Have A Dream Express” for a free ride. Will the train ever make it to the station?
I am not trying to go all Ayn Rand on this subject, but how much a CEO makes for salary really, honestly has little to do with the plight of the base of the Democrat party.
Do we as a nation have a big problem with our financial institutions? Yes! Do we have a problem with affordable health care? Yes! Is Obamacare the answer? No! Are the Republicans offering any solutions besides repeal? No, not any plan that I am aware of. Do we have an issue with implementing needed energy and telecommunications infrastructure upgrades? Absolutely!
But to put all of these problems (and more) on the shoulders of racial bigotry does a great disservice to the actual problems/solutions as well as it sullies the achievement and vision of Dr. Martin Luther King. And it makes it all but impossible to work together toward a solution.