July 1, 2008
When you turn on television news or read your newspaper and the story is about black people, who do you expect to see and what do you expect to hear? Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson, right? Liberalism and attacks on the rich? Right again.
This is due in part to the laziness of program bookers and reporters who seek these two out because they make good copy and good sound bites. But a new survey of black Americans show blacks far more diverse in their beliefs than many people think.
The survey finds that the hip-hop generation, often portrayed as rebellious, has tremendous respect for its elders. Prejudice exists, but most blacks are optimistic about the future. There is a new affluent black middle class who are most likely to believe that challenges within black communities can best be solved by blacks.
This is very good news, because so-called black leadership continues to promote the fiction that only government can help black people. This is largely because the self-anointed leadership wants the political access and the money that goes with it. The survey findings are encouraging.
Cal Thomas is a nationally syndicated columnist based in Washington, D.C.