Hindsight is 20/20
America should never have implemented Affirmative Action.
Then blacks would have their own shit, their own institutions, or they/we would have just died off.
What I'm missing from my life has a lot to do with this issue. If I had thought this way a few years back, I would have gone to auto mechanic school, gotten into business with my cousins, and be independent by now. But no. "We" were trying to blend in.
My cousin tried to tell me this long ago, but it didn't sink in until recently.
Now I can't go into business with him, because I'm sunk with school loans and obligations from trying to fit in with the corporate life that turns out to be golden handcuffs. Or brass ones.
Golden handcuffs have nothing to do with being black.
I'm wearing a pretty tight pair too.
April 12th, 2007 2:04pm
What's the meaning of golden handcuffs? Seems not all bad to me!
April 12th, 2007 2:05pm
I know why the caged bird sings.
son of parnas
April 12th, 2007 2:07pm
"Golden handcuffs have nothing to do with being black. "
I didn't say they did. They are part of selling your soul for a paycheck, regardless of color. That's the point I'm making: I might not be in the same shoes as you if we didn't have programs trying to force corporations to hire me, etc. I'd be out fending for myself, out of necessity.
"I'd be out fending for myself, out of necessity."
And THAT's why the Jews, the Asians, the Indians, the recent Carribbean immigrants, do so much better than African Americans and non-immigrant whites.
Why are you keeping your school loans around like a pet? How much are they? Pay 'em off.....
April 12th, 2007 2:09pm
Move to BF nowhere and pay 1/2 of your current rent. And then go in to business with whoever you please.
April 12th, 2007 2:13pm
"That's the point I'm making: I might not be in the same shoes as you if we didn't have programs trying to force corporations to hire me, etc. I'd be out fending for myself, out of necessity."
I don't think it is a black, white, asian issue. It is a, "Do you have the balls to go out on your own and possibly make a lot of money issue".
Look at Paul Graham's recent article, I don't think he is speaking to a particular race.
Why black's aren't as weathly as other races? I bet if you add up the wealth of every person of african descendent and compare it with the wealth of other nations. That number would be a lot less. As far as I know, there hasnt been as much wealth carried around with the family of african americans (I wager, slavery had a lot to do with that).
The Bill Gates wealth, the Peter Drucker families, the Walmart families; this wealth is being carried around and maintained. And I am sure that there is a lot of wealth from families coming from India, China, etc. You must have money to spend $100,000 on an education to MIT, or pay the money to come to this country.
With that being said, there is still going to be money for future generations of African American families. A lot in my family either worked for IBM or were educators and one startup junkie (why I didnt ride his coattails, I dont know). Their kids are probably going to do quite well (most are teenagers, I am the older generation)
April 12th, 2007 2:20pm
>And I am sure that there is a lot of wealth from families coming from India, China, etc.
Immigrants pretty much by definition are motivated, go-get-um kinds of people (they had the initiative and the means to get up and move around the globe), so it isn't surprizing that they, as a general group, do very well (not to mention that non-refugee migrants generally are heavily filtered, so only the most educated, and so on, "get in").
April 12th, 2007 2:26pm
"I don't think it is a black, white, asian issue. It is a, "Do you have the balls to go out on your own and possibly make a lot of money issue". "
I think we are saying the same thing, perhaps. I think you lose your balls when you don't use them. And we haven't had to use them after setting up enough programs that have greatly benefitted the black middle class---enough to make us very middling.
"The Bill Gates wealth, the Peter Drucker families, the Walmart families; this wealth is being carried around and maintained."
Gates have give away a tremendous amount of wealth both in absolute and percentage terms. His foundation is doing great things.
Drucker fled the Nazi's and established the study of management as a credible academic field. I'm not sure how much money he had when he died in 2005, but it's too soon to declare an empire. He was certainly active in writing about the *management* of non-profits. I'm not sure he gave much cash away.
The Walmart family are greedy bastards. They've given away approximately 1% of their wealth.
April 12th, 2007 2:32pm
"Immigrants pretty much by definition are motivated, go-get-um kinds of people"
It sucks the higher-up's in their respective countries dont want to change their respective governments. For example, in India, isn't there still a lot of poverty even thought the call centers and outsourcing are taking off? I bet it is easier for a family to raise thousands of dollars to send their kid to the US and become successful there then it is to build wealth in their own countries, interesting.
April 12th, 2007 2:33pm
America should never have canceled Affirmative Action.
What I'm missing from my life is a goddamn paycheck. It's hell down here. If I had known this a few years back I would have just taken my degree and worked 9-to-5 for the man. Who cares as long as his check clears? This way I have to chase down every goddamn dollar bill as if I were muzzled dog chasing that damn mechanical rabbit (lost again at the tracks last night, damn).
But no, I had to go out and prove to myself that I don't need any of them. Any of "the man"s.
My mother tried to tell me this long ago, but it didn't sink in until recently.
Now I can't go to school anymore, can't get a degree, can't prove that I have the brains and persistence and money to like them walking down the street, can't be nothing to no one but this goddamn car mechanic, fixing up brothers' rusty old clankers which they don't pay me for half the time. This place stinks. It smells. I come home and no amount of soap or shampoo or flat out detergent washes it away. Those are the good days, the days I get dirty instead of just sitting watching white people drive their cars down the block to Kralowski's.
"The Walmart family are greedy bastards. They've given away approximately 1% of their wealth."
That is my point. If you are a relative of the Waltons, you are going to be sitting pretty. If you are a relative of Al Sharpton, you might have to pay a massive amount of Sharpton Pilfering debt.
April 12th, 2007 2:35pm
Right. I'm just not sure Drucker and Gates belong next to them.
April 12th, 2007 2:35pm
"And THAT's why the Jews, the Asians, the Indians, the recent Carribbean immigrants, do so much better than African Americans and non-immigrant whites."
Could the reason be the incredibly high portion of black children growing up in single parent homes?
April 12th, 2007 2:54pm
" However, these increases still left the percentage of black families maintained by single parents more than twice the percentage for white families, and 75% higher than that for Hispanics."
the data is in!
April 12th, 2007 2:59pm
Affirmative Action is a racist plot to keep minorities down? I buy it.
April 12th, 2007 3:08pm
"Could the reason be the incredibly high portion of black children growing up in single parent homes?"
I'm looking for the root cause--single parent homes is a symptom of what I'm getting at.
God is the root cause of everything.
April 12th, 2007 3:11pm
There is no root cause. If there is "Affirmative Action" is not.
I don't see how someone borned in America could not achieve "anything" he wants, as long as he grows up in a healthy family. Perhaps black people set up unreasonable expectation. The chance of becoming a billionare is low, unless your parents are already rich. Set your expectation and goal properly and you'll succeed.
You can't succeed if you don't blend in.
April 12th, 2007 3:30pm
I agree with what Rick said. And I dont think there is anyone on this forum hasnt already succeeded. Remember, in Washington DC, area, there is a 30% illiteracy rate.
It seems like someone us can hang on this forum and get paid doing it.
April 12th, 2007 3:41pm
> I'm sunk with school loans
When did you graduate? Nearly 10 years ago?
April 12th, 2007 4:33pm
I went to an expensive school. I sold out to "the man" completely thinking that a prestigious school would be worth the money. I started out with debt even though I got good music scholarships.
But asking this question completely misses the point I'm trying to make and continuing to derail this otherwise interesting discussion with crap about "blah blah blah you can still do XYZ don't let money stop you blah blah blah" is utter bull and I am not going any further into my personal finances on a web forum.
Oh, and shut up with the "you were a dumbass you should have gone to a state school". You don't hear that when you are 17 and everyone thinks you are God's gift to college and tells you that you have to go to the best school possible.
You don't really know the outcomes of the road-not-taken. All you know is the outcomes of the road-taken. It's a critical mistake to assume that the road-not-taken would be MUCH better than the path you're on.
April 12th, 2007 4:55pm
How does asking the question miss the point? You feel boxed in by your debt. You didn't pay it off. It's not about "the man" putting you down. It's about all your bad decisions over the years.
April 12th, 2007 5:00pm
Please don't stop. Discussions here and elsewhere won't change the society in the short run. But I hope each discussion will get opinions everyone here closer, or at least make our difference more explicit.
I hope I didn't imply the solution is simple. I don't think it is. I still maintain an crucial ingredient of the solutions are to blend in, not seperate, when the infrastructure, equality before the law, is already in place.
April 12th, 2007 5:07pm
But you are being an ass, bob.
The first post in this thread clearly states I made a mistake by not attending a trade school or somesuch instead of trying to mainstream myself into places I'm not really wanted.
So you are wasting a good discussion by talking about something I've already admitted.
Was it a bad decision? Yes. That's why Hindsight is 20/20, you complete dumb fuck.
Good grief. What ever happened to the smart people on this board?
"But I hope each discussion will get opinions everyone here closer, or at least make our difference more explicit. "
Yes! I am totally trying to understand what has happened in the context of my current society and what I _expected_ to happen when I was in the past society.
I have listened to many of you on similar topics for months, and while I never battled for Affirmative Action, I was always on the fence about it, to be truthful. But now I know AA was totally the wrong way to go. I'm not blaming AA, but the expectation it set and the softness it develops in the people it is supposed to benefit.
Yeah, let's understand the evolving context of society instead of realizing that if YOU lived on a BUDGET you could pay your debts and DO WHATEVER YOU WANT. You could still turn your life in just a couple years. It's not a big society man problem. It's YOU.
I'm not being an ass, I'm stopping you from living in this denial.
The man tricked you into going to an expensive school. Then tricked you into not bothering to pay down the debt. And now is tricking you into not paying it down over the next few years. Got it.
April 12th, 2007 5:19pm
> Was it a bad decision? Yes.
My search doesn't work well. We're you happy as a puppy couple weeks back?
April 12th, 2007 5:23pm
Denial about my personal finances? I live very low-key and put a significant amount of money into savings. I can't simply go learn a trade for self-employment, while doing computer stuff would be fine, I'm not sure it can sustain me, and partnering up with my cousins at an early age would have been ideal and I am sure other middle-class black folks are wondering where they went wrong, too. We chose a path without options to vacate--this is another thread topic, however.
I really don't want this to evolve into a discussion about how I spend my money. That isn't the interesting part, and please start another thread because soon we are going to have it devolve into "sharkfish is an idiot" rather than "AA is a root cause of softness among blacks" which is a LOT more interesting than me.
> "AA is a root cause of softness among blacks"
That's what that McWhorter (sp?) fellow says. (All I know he's a linguist who writes for language log and says stuff like above.)
April 12th, 2007 5:25pm
But the marriage issue may have been greatly influenced by government programs that support blacks and discourage them from marriage. So it still misses the mark here, BOB. YOu're just being obtuse. Move on. Nothing for you here.
You're just pissed that I pointed out your problems are of your own making. I'm as qualified to comment on the situation of blacks as you.
April 12th, 2007 5:37pm
"instead of trying to mainstream myself into places I'm not really wanted."
You really feel that way? Because you're black/gay/both?
It's hard to gain the perspective even though I do like to think I can easily put myself into others' shoes.
I don't know that AA has made people soft, or lazy, or robbed them of their ambition because I am not a black man. I just know that it is, itself, a racist policy.
I'd also debate the merits of the attempt to fix history in this manner. Surely, there are plenty of others' whose ancestry lends itself to the suboptimal fates of future generations. Yet, we make no effort to right all the other wrongs of history.
In so doing, we are actively mistreating all other historically misfortunate people's plights as we've given yet more individuals a higher rung on the ladder than they.
April 12th, 2007 5:42pm
Interesting thought experiments.
There's lots of different factors, and some of them are cultural, like the single parent stuff. Also the cultural issues that Bill Cosby talks about - I think there is a lot to that. Why is it cool to be a dumbass in hiphop culture?
If you are a smart black woman, keep your wacky ghetto name, learn to play the piano masterfully, become an expert in martial arts, become the provost of an Ivy League school, then become Secretary of State of the most powerful country on earth, then your fellow blacks say "She sold out to the white man" and "Look at her following her massa."
April 12th, 2007 5:43pm
Music track for this thread
April 12th, 2007 5:45pm
Love this one too.
April 12th, 2007 5:52pm
"But the marriage issue may have been greatly influenced by government programs that support blacks and discourage them from marriage."
Probably, but it's more than "affirmative actions" since they only benefit the relatively well-offs. Are there other programms that support blacks/minorities only?
I don't have much to offer since I am on your side about the effective of affirmative actions. I'll only say that please be nicer to Bot Berlin. If you want others understand how your history impact you now you have to do the same to others.
April 12th, 2007 5:58pm
Be nice to Bot, but not to fags.
Love only the Jesus Freaks.
April 12th, 2007 6:00pm
I aspire to be a nappy-headed ho.
April 13th, 2007 12:11am
"You're just pissed that I pointed out your problems are of your own making. "
Which I firmly stated in my first post. You're just a complete ass.