Wednesday, June 02, 2004

Walter Williams: "Three Cheers for the Cos"

In today's columnist Walter Williams weighs in a the controversy surrounding Bill Cosby's recent statements at a service commemorating fifty years since the landmark "Brown v. Board of Education" decision. Williams provides a good intro:

" May 17 saw several gatherings commemorating the 50th anniversary of the 1954 U.S. Supreme Court school desegregation decision in Brown vs. Board of Education. But the event held in Washington, D.C.'s Constitution Hall will be the one to be remembered because of Bill Cosby's remarks, which won him scathing criticism from some in the black community.

For years, I've argued that most of the problems many black Americans face today have little or nothing to do with racial discrimination. For the most part, the most devastating problems encountered by a large segment of the black community are self-inflicted. Bill Cosby mentioned several of them, such as black parents who'll buy their children expensive clothing rather than something educational, poor language spoken by many children and adults, and criminals who prey on the overwhelmingly law-abiding residents of black neighborhoods."

Many in the audience apparently agreed and laughed and applauded at Cosby's chutzpah. The reaction of the NAACP leaders, however, was one of horror. Horror that Bill Cosby would make statements outside of what the NAACP deems appropriate and acceptable.

In a recent column, my colleague Thomas Sowell explained, "Bill Cosby and the black 'leadership' represent two long-standing differences about how to deal with the problems of the black community. The 'leaders' are concerned with protecting the image of blacks, while Cosby is trying to protect the future of blacks, especially those of the younger generation."

Go and read it. It says a lot about why the NAACP and other orgnaizations that claim to represent black americans are probably those least suited to alter the landscape of the black working-class / innercity experience.

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