HAS BLACK ANGER ENDED? by William Reed Columnist

The worst abuses of the Jim Crow era have been eliminated, but the moral outrage inspired by a personal encounter with bigotry remains the most powerful vehicle for conveying the injuries and indignities of racial inequality.

In the days since the great civil rights awakening, a revolution has occurred across America. Uptight suburbanites who couldn’t imagine socializing with, working for or marrying a “Negro,” have given way to a new and different generation. That process has cleared the way for a generation of “Black Believers” who fully accept that America means what it says when it promises to treat them fairly. Are these young African Americans naive about racism or basically more confident than their elders? Now, from a venerated and best-selling author on American life comes a tremendously important book about one of the most significant issues in the history of our republic – America’s race relations.

The book, The End of Anger by Ellis Cose offers a fresh, original appraisal of our nation at this extraordinary time, tracking the diminishment of Black anger and investigating the "generational shifting of the American mind." Weaving material from myriad interviews as well as two large and ambitious surveys – one of Black Harvard MBAs and the other of graduates of A Better Chance, a program that has offered elite educational opportunities to thousands of young people of color since 1963 – Cose offers an invaluable portrait of contemporary America in which all agree that life is different for an African American than it is for a White American. Cose says that what is different is the perception of discrimination in terms of their life possibilities. Younger Blacks are more likely to believe that they can personally overcome institutional racism because there are ways to get around it that their parents didn’t have, and their grandparents could not even imagine.

Cose sketches a picture of consistent historical and generational change in which growing optimism among Blacks is a natural response to waning racial bigotry among Whites. In The End of Anger, Cose names each generation to reflect improving race relations: the Black “Fighters” of midcentury America were succeeded by the civil rights “Dreamers” of the late 20th century, who are now sharing power and prominence with the “Believers” of the new millennium. Cose’s collection of intergenerational interviews provides tangible evidence of the improvement in racial dynamics over the past 50 years: the contempt and blatant discrimination suffered by the “fighters” and “dreamers” giving way to the inter­racial relationships and expanded job opportunities of the “believers.”

The refreshing, readable and comprehensive book cites “a sense of optimism among African Americans” and in a interesting manner, attributes the increase of Black optimism to three factors: Barack Obama’s election; "generational evolution," which sees each successive generation harboring fewer racial prejudices, suggesting that African Americans could be facing less racism than their parents; and the related rise of racial equality.

The book provides a contemporary look at 21st century America and is a paradoxical portrait of race in America, where educated, privileged Blacks are optimistic about their futures, but for Blacks at the lower end of the economic spectrum, equality remains as elusive as ever. Cose matches statistics to analysis in his comprehensive look at race in the 21st century. The End of Anger provides insight on young Black movers and shakers like the former Tennessee congressman Harold E. Ford Jr. and the N.A.A.C.P. president, Benjamin Jealous. Cose’s interviews with well-­established leaders with relatively conventional platforms and constituencies produced predictable comments.

Does hard-core and blatant racism still exist? Read Cose’s offering as he states “I think we will for generations, and maybe forever, be dealing with the impact of racism. But racism as a phenomenon itself is fading, but I don’t think we’ll reach a point where we can talk about it and deal with it when it’s still a problem.” Racism is a problem we still have to deal with in America, but The End of Anger may well be the most important book dealing with race to date.

(William Reed is available for speaking/seminar projects via BaileyGroup.org)

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William Reed Columnist

NC NAACP Statement Regarding Judge Howard Manning’s Ruling on State Budget


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NC NAACP Statement Regarding Judge Howard Manning’s Ruling on State Budget

For Immediate Release

July 19, 2011

Contact: Rev. Dr. William J. Barber, II, President, 919-394-8137

Mrs. Amina J. Turner, Executive Director, 919-682-4700

Atty. Jennifer W. Marsh, Legal Redress Coordinator, 919-682-4700

On June 23, 2011 the NC NAACP joined several organizations in submitting an amicus ("friend of the court") brief in support of the plaintiffs in a suit filed by a group of low-wealth, rural and urban North Carolina counties claiming that the devastating budget cuts to preschool and public schools will undermine North Carolina’s constitutional obligations. Judge Howard Manning ruled yesterday that the state budget, with regard to pre-kindergarten education, does in fact undermine the state’s constitutional obligations to all children.

In his opinion, Judge Manning wrote, "Simply put, it is the duty of the State of North Carolina to protect each and every one of these at-risk and defenseless children, and to provide them their lawful opportunity, through a quality pre-kindergarten program, to take advantage of their equal opportunity to obtain a sound basic education as guaranteed by the North Carolina constitution."

"Judge Howard Manning’s ruling yesterday that the state budget, passed by ultra-conservative extremists in the NC Legislature, violates the constitutional rights of our most precious and vulnerable pre-kindergarten children is a confirmation of what the NC NAACP and other progressive organizations have argued all along: the people running the NC General Assembly are breaking the law," said Rev. Dr. William J. Barber, II. "The frontal attack on public education waged by the current majority in the General Assembly passed an illegal budget in June of this year. Judge Manning’s ruling leaves no doubt that the General Assembly’s adoption of the draconian budget not only broke the constitutional law but violated a higher moral law that promises all children the right to a sound, basic education no matter what race or socio-economic status they may be."

The NC NAACP’s goal remains that every child receives a constitutional, high quality, well-funded, diverse public education. All educational decisions must be guided by the standards of the law with respect to civil rights, the data of sound research, which continually proves that resources and diversity are key components to student achievement, and the lessons of history, which remind us we must go forward and not backwards.

We are proud to have joined these other organizations in signing on to the amicus brief: American Civil Liberties Union of North Carolina Legal Foundation, Advocates for Children’s Services of Legal Aid of North Carolina, Disability Rights NC and the NC Justice Center.


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Wilson NC – BOE personnel changes – Source: The Wilson Times

Each month the Wilson County Board of Education releases its personnel list, which shows employees who have been hired, retired or resigned from the system during the past month. Because school administrators and teachers touch the lives of so many people, The Wilson Times publishes the list each month to help the community keep up with the comings and goings in the school system. (Paid Content)

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Oak Level loses in court but has new state law on its side – Source: The Rocky Mount Telegram

The N.C. Court of Appeals upheld Tuesday an N.C. Superior Court judge’s decision in an annexation case involving residents of the Oak Level community and the city of Rocky Mount. (Paid Content)

Note: Now the people of Oak Level will be able to decide per the new state law so will those who protest be able to pull it off. Curmilus Dancy II – DCN Publisher

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Appeals court rules against Oak Level residents