SHELBY STEELE: A BLACK VOICE NEEDED IN THE CONVERSATION
Over the last few weeks I keep hearing that blacks and whites must have a conversion about racism. The idea is that “a conversation” will solve our problems and move America forward.
However, whenever I hear “we must have a conversion,” it often turns out to be an emotional one-dimensional conversion. It is listening to people (whether black of white) who all think and speak alike. Everyone seems to be swimming in the same narrative. And if someone does not want to swim in this narrative, then they are labeled a white racist or an uncle Tom.
This kind of conversation can be like taking a drink from a fire hose. How can we have a true conversation with so much faddish opposition to the freedom of speech and thought in modern America?
If the present “conversation about racism” is to be productive and really move America forward, then we must hear from diverse black voices. For blacks are not a blob of conformity; they are actually quite diverse. We don’t think that blacks are as diverse as they are, because the mainstream media pushes only one type of black voice on us all.
In a recent post I encouraged everyone to read the book “White Guilt: How Blacks and Whites Together Destroyed the Promise of the Civil Rights Era” by Shelby Steele.
Professor Steele is a research fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution. He is a great author, and I am always surprised when people have never heard of him.
Below is a 2018 interview with Dr. Steele that I encourage you to listen to. He is one of the very important black voices that must be part of “the conversation” in our day.