ChickenBones: A Journal
for Literary & Artistic African-American Themes
America has been the best country on earth for black folks. It was here that 600,000 black people,
brought from Africa in slave ships, grew into a community of 40 million, were introduced to
Christian salvation, and reached the greatest levels of freedom and prosperity blacks have ever known.
A Brief for Whitey
Response to Barack Obama Speech on Race
By Patrick J. Buchanan
How would he pull it off? I wondered. How would Barack explain to his press groupies why he sat silent in a pew for 20 years as the Rev. Jeremiah Wright delivered racist rants against white America for our maligning of Fidel and Gadhafi, and inventing AIDS to infect and kill black people? How would he justify not walking out as Wright spewed his venom about the U.S. of K.K.K. America, and howled, God damn America! My hunch was right. Barack would turn the tables.
Yes, Barack agreed, Wrights statements were controversial, and divisive, and racially charged, reflecting a distorted view of America. But we must understand the man in full and the black experience out of which the Rev. Wright came: 350 years of slavery and segregation. Barack then listed black grievances and informed us what white America must do to close the racial divide and heal the country.
The white community, said Barack, must start acknowledging that what ails the African-American community does not just exist in the minds of black people; that the legacy of discrimination and current incidents of discrimination, while less overt than in the past are real and must be addressed. Not just with words, but with deeds . And what deeds must we perform to heal ourselves and our country?
The white community must invest more money in black schools and communities, enforce civil rights laws, ensure fairness in the criminal justice system and provide this generation of blacks with ladders of opportunity that were unavailable to Baracks and the Rev. Wrights generations. What is wrong with Baracks prognosis and Baracks cure? Only this. It is the same old con, the same old shakedown that black hustlers have been running since the Kerner Commission blamed the riots in Harlem, Watts, Newark, Detroit and a hundred other cities on, as Nixon put it, everybody but the rioters themselves.
Was white racism really responsible for those black men looting auto dealerships and liquor stories, and burning down their own communities, as Otto Kerner said that liberal icon until the feds put him away for bribery. Barack says we need to have a conversation about race in America. Fair enough. But this time, it has to be a two-way conversation. White America needs to be heard from, not just lectured to. This time, the Silent Majority needs to have its convictions, grievances and demands heard. And among them are these:
First, America has been the best country on earth for black folks. It was here that 600,000 black people, brought from Africa in slave ships, grew into a community of 40 million, were introduced to Christian salvation, and reached the greatest levels of freedom and prosperity blacks have ever known. Wright ought to go down on his knees and thank God he is an American.
Second, no people anywhere has done more to lift up blacks than white Americans. Untold trillions have been spent since the 60s on welfare, food stamps, rent supplements, Section 8 housing, Pell grants, student loans, legal services, Medicaid, Earned Income Tax Credits and poverty programs designed to bring the African-American community into the mainstream.
Governments, businesses and colleges have engaged in discrimination against white folks with affirmative action, contract set-asides and quotas to advance black applicants over white applicants. Churches, foundations, civic groups, schools and individuals all over America have donated time and money to support soup kitchens, adult education, day care, retirement and nursing homes for blacks.
We hear the grievances. Where is the gratitude? Barack talks about new ladders of opportunity for blacks. Let him go to Altoona and Johnstown, and ask the white kids in Catholic schools how many were visited lately by Ivy League recruiters handing out scholarships for deserving white kids.
Is white America really responsible for the fact that the crime and incarceration rates for African-Americans are seven times those of white America? Is it really white Americas fault that illegitimacy in the African-American community has hit 70 percent and the black dropout rate from high schools in some cities has reached 50 percent? Is that the fault of white America or, first and foremost, a failure of the black community itself?
As for racism, its ugliest manifestation is in interracial crime, and especially interracial crimes of violence. Is Barack Obama aware that while white criminals choose black victims 3 percent of the time, black criminals choose white victims 45 percent of the time? Is Barack aware that black-on-white rapes are 100 times more common than the reverse, that black-on-white robberies were 139 times as common in the first three years of this decade as the reverse?
We have all heard ad nauseam from the Rev. Al about Tawana Brawley, the Duke rape case and Jena. And all turned out to be hoaxes. But about the epidemic of black assaults on whites that are real, we hear nothing. Sorry, Barack, some of us have heard it all before, about 40 years and 40 trillion tax dollars ago.
Source: http://buchanan.org/blog/?p=969 March 21, 2008
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For we have a choice in this country. We can accept a politics that breeds division, and conflict, and cynicism. We can tackle race only as spectacle – as we did in the OJ trial – or in the wake of tragedy, as we did in the aftermath of Katrina – or as fodder for the nightly news. We can play Reverend Wright’s sermons on every channel, every day and talk about them from now until the election, and make the only question in this campaign whether or not the American people think that I somehow believe or sympathize with his most offensive words. We can pounce on some gaffe by a Hillary supporter as evidence that she’s playing the race card, or we can speculate on whether white men will all flock to John McCain in the general election regardless of his policies. Barack Obama Speech on Race
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Wow MSNBC Political analyst Pat Buchanan has really lost it in “A Brief for Whitey.” He doesn’t get the reasons for the racial divide in this country, but thinks he does like many lily white rich men. And he wants black people to show gratitude towards white people. Really. He sounds like the rich, white, well to do racists I grew up with… he’s got all their talking points down, but he misses the whole point. Sad. . . . Pat Buchanan doesn’t speak for this white American and I would never dare to say such things to a black person like “You should be grateful that your slave ancestors came to America so that you could be saved by Gawd Almighty in our most christian country blessed by Gawd himself.” Blonde Sense
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If you ask me, it sounds like someones been drinking unfiltered tap water, if you know what I mean.Since when is kidnapping, lynching, raping, and torture seen as a good thing? Talk about living in a state of denial.
Pat Buchanans comments are exactly the reason why Black people need to address the atrocities committed against us and not leave it to others to rewrite our history. If we dont we get ludicrous statements like the one above which we all know is about as far from the truth as WMDs in Iraq.
The fact that he felt comfortable enough in his whiteness to say this is what really bothers me and just further illustrates how they continue to try and minimize and justify slavery and years of racial discrimination.
If I follow Buchanans logic, as a Black woman I should be thanking my lucky stars that the white man traveled across the Atlantic Ocean and to capture my ancestors and bring them here to work as slaves in his fields and home.
I should be thankful for the trees in the south that held the ropes that were tied around the necks of Black men and women who were lynched at the hands of whitey.
As Black women, we should be rejoicing over the white mans penchant for our dark chocolate colored skin, big hips, and voluptuous breasts, that frequently took him from the big house to the outhouse where we were.
The Bible, that Christian salvation that Buchanan and those like him speak so passionately about, well its the same book that justified whitey owning slaves and the mistreatment of those slaves. Whiteys Bible came complete with a blue-eyed Jesus to suit and was forced upon his African slaves in their new land. I think Buchanan forgot to mention that part. Jasmyne Cannick
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The problem here is Mr. Buchanan wants the gratitude that black people give to God. Eddie Griffin
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Buchanan, in his online rant, ignores Obama’s call to the Black community to address its own issues. Obama did this before even addressing what the White community must do in this country. Furthermore, he took bits and pieces of various lines to form demands that Obama never made.
Pat Buchanan went to private school and to a private college (eschewing the grandeur of public education). Maybe that’s how he missed the dilapidated schools that Barack Obama talks about. Since he’s never been elected to represent anyone, maybe he’s been able to ignore and skip the poorest parts of America. And maybe, since his only real job has been to talk, ad nauseum, on television (instead of working 2 waitressing jobs, fast food, in factories, in fields, etc) he doesn’t really get the plight of poor America – White or Black.
The truth is, though Pat Buchanan talks about wanting to remember where America comes from, he does so out of ignorance. He romanticizes the prosperity of Blacks in America (some Blacks achieve wealth, many are stuck in abject poverty) as well as indicates the Eurocentric mentality that living in the US is better for slaves.
Unfortunately, being a pundit (even from a good school such as Gonzaga) allows you to make false equivocations without retribution. Who is to say that Africa would be the same if Europe and the Americas didn’t take 40 million of its citizens away from the continent? If the West had left her alone, would Africa have its resources, governments, wealth and people – so that it could rival any other continent (especially considering how Africa brought us civilization in the first place)?
In his “Brief for Whitey” (written in his white briefs?), he writes that the US government has given untold trillions to aid the Black community by way of welfare, etc. Here are, in no particular order, the issues with his statement:
Blacks aren’t the only ones that receive Aid to Dependant Families and Children (what we used to know as “welfare”) or Temporary Aid for Needy Families (what we currently think of when we hear “welfare”). Families of all races receive this, housing supplements and food stamps.
Even worse, the amount given to poor families is nothing, nothing, compared to the amount of welfare given to energy companies, medical industries and defense contractors. That welfare FAR outweighs and outspends the welfare given to poor folk – and the recipients are largely white, upper class.
Just for fun, Harper’s magazine estimated that the US Government would owe over 100 trillion dollars in reparations, if we were to go that route. So – maybe we are just paying it back slowly.
Finally, good ol’ boy Buchanan lists some crimes that Blacks commit against Whites more often than Whites against Blacks. Being the guy I am, I want to include rape of slaves by slaveowners, murder/lynching, etc – but I won’t go there now. Daily Kos
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Pat Buchanan has some issues with Obamas race speech which he expresses in a piece titled, A Brief for Whitey. Apparently he feels like the discussion on race has been too one-sided and he wants black people to begin to listen to the white perspective (a group that he refers to as the Silent Majority, by the way). In the process of listening, he wants blacks to also acknowledge and be grateful for what white folks have done for them. . . . . Thanks Pat. We thank Americas white ancestors for saving our ancestors from themselves and brining them over on slave ships to the U.S. That 248 years of unparalleled inhumanity and the subsequent decades of terror and Jim Crow was a small price to pay for the wonderful opportunity for us to live here. Maybe after the number of years we have been in this country exceeds the number of years we have been treated less than human, we will be able to see how truly right you are. . . . Thank you again, sir. Forget about that little civil rights movement thing that was initiated and driven mostly by black people. No, that little blip in American history had nothing to do with our advances. No, it wasnt that little movement which forced much of white America to look at itself in the mirror and try to make good on the proclamations and laws laid out by the countrys founders. No, whites did that all on their own just as they paid for all of the social programs you mentioned. That money never came out of anyone elses pocketsjust whites. And all that money wasnt an effort to better America, it was an effort to benefit black people. Yes, Pat, we are all so grateful. Community Checkup
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In his March 21 blog entitled, PJB: A Brief for Whitey, Buchanan weighed in on Obama’s race speech. In his blog, he makes it blatantly obvious that he, himself, possesses deep-seeded hatred, jealousy, and resentment towards the black community. Andrew
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Pat Buchanan makes me embarrassed to be white. He also fails at any self reflection. Digg
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Well, anyone who uses the phrase “black folks” has got to have his finger on the pulse of the racial situation in America, so I’m inclined to agree with this angry, bitter man who seems to always be talking on every news program. Come on, black people! How come you can’t realize the enormous favor that good patriotic white Americans did for your great-grandparents when they traded five chickens and a broken lamp for them at the slave market all those years ago? I mean, otherwise, they would have spent their lives as African people. Instead, they got the honor of being American things. Indecision2008
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For a very different take on Obama’s speech, anti-racist writer Tim Wise, ups the anti of truth telling in his hard-hitting essay “Of National Lies and Racial Amnesia: Jeremiah Wright, Barack Obama, and the Audacity of Truth,” where he states: “Indignation doesn’t work for most whites, because having remained sanguine about, silent during, indeed often supportive of so much injustice over the years in this country–the theft of native land and genocide of indigenous persons, and the enslavement of Africans being only two of the best examples–we are just a bit late to get into the game of moral rectitude. And once we enter it, our efforts at righteousness tend to fail the test of sincerity.” Check out the full text at Tim Wise.org/ Terry K.
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Pat Buchanan = Ass HatI didnt even think about race until I arrived in Erie, PA and was surrounded by confederate flags and the n word being used liberally. Dont get me wrong, I am in NO WAY endorsing or justifying the words of Rev. Wright, and yes, there have been times in my life that I have been resentful for the looks Ive received from minorities who assume that because Im white my ancestors were automatically slave owners, of their ancestors. And dont even get me started on immigration and the entitlement that certain minorities seem to have. Im just saying, maybe we shouldnt throw a party for ourselves for being the liberators of the black people. Invenema
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It is blatantly obvious that he, himself, possesses deep-seeded hatred, jealousy, and resentment towards the black community. I could dissect Buchanans comments at length as fraudulent, but whats the point? He writes as if Caucasians are the true victims of race, and theres no reason to even try to fight this notion, because its utterly false. He, in fact, possesses the same static worldview that Obama spoke of in his speech on race; instead of acknowledging the legitimacy of Obamas ideas, he goes to great lengths denying them, while simultaneously fulfilling them. To put it mildly, Buchanans comments are factually incorrect, ignorant, repulsive, and preposterous. Frankly put, Buchanan is full of shit. Its way past time that MSNBC relieves him of his position at their network. As of now, they have yet to comment on his remarks. But when they do, I hope they recognize the need to reject and denounce. The New Argument
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Pat Buchanan, Americas Foremost Intellectual on Issues of Race Its important to get all this stuff out in the open. Weve got to get it all out. And thus, Pat Buchanan, Americas foremost racial scholar who once came in just third in the race for the GOP presidential nomination. . . . Oh, my. Yes, just looking at Barack Obama, one can tell that he is the same breed of black hustler the white community has been trying to dispense with for decades. There are specific characteristics you look for to tell whether or not a person is a black hustler. For example, black hustlers have skin that is darker than white peoples. Its generally a brown-ish color ranging from very light to very dark, practically black. Sound like a certain presidential candidate anyone can thank of? Hmmm? . . . Listen Pat, its hard losing your job going into a protracted economic downturn, but were sure youll come out on top cause, lets face, Rich white guys always do? But only cause they work the hardest right? Right! 😉 Anyway, we hope you dont get the living fuck beaten out of you by a bunch of thugs (black of course) on your way home tonight. It would be a sad thing for the world to be deprived of your insights, even if only for a moment. Cynics Party
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Is Wright Right About Racism?Pat Buchanan billy-clubbed Wright for saying, God damn America. The MSNBC commentator, who avoided the draft, implied that Wright, a former Marine, lacks sufficient loyalty to country. Out of context, Wrights exclamation was admittedly offensive. But remember: It punctuated a speech about segregation. Buchanan, nonetheless, unleashed, deriding black hustlers and insisting descendants of those brought from Africa in slave ships owe whites a thank you. Where is the gratitude? he asked. . . . ABC News reports that Clintons campaign is pushing the Wright story ahead of the Pennsylvania and Indiana primaries. The crass tactic is designed to motivate the racist vote by reminding whites of Obamas connection to the African-American community. Put another way, Clintons message has become simply: Obama Is black. Wright probably expected this brouhaha. He says our government is controlled by rich white people and our culture afflicted by racism. Though these statements are also deemed distasteful by the Establishment, they are truisms. You can see their veracity in the collected portraits of white millionaires commonly called the congressional photo directory. Or, just turn on your television and watch the mob continue stoking the Wright controversy. Truthdig
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Rice hits U.S. ‘birth defect’ Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said yesterday that the United States still has trouble dealing with race because of a national “birth defect” that denied black Americans the opportunities given to whites at the country’s very founding. “Black Americans were a founding population,” she said. “Africans and Europeans came here and founded this country together Europeans by choice and Africans in chains. That’s not a very pretty reality of our founding.” As a result, Miss Rice told editors and reporters at The Washington Times, “descendants of slaves did not get much of a head start, and I think you continue to see some of the effects of that.” “That particular birth defect makes it hard for us to confront it, hard for us to talk about it, and hard for us to realize that it has continuing relevance for who we are today,” she said. Race has become an issue in this year’s presidential campaign, which prompted a much-discussed speech last week by Sen. Barack Obama, one of the two remaining contenders for the Democratic nomination. Miss Rice declined to comment on the campaign, saying only that it was “important” that Mr. Obama “gave it for a whole host of reasons.” But she spoke forcefully on the subject, citing personal and family experience to illustrate “a paradox and contradiction in this country,” which “we still haven’t resolved.” On the one hand, she said, race in the U.S. “continues to have effects” on public discussions and “the deepest thoughts that people hold.” On the other, “enormous progress” has been made, which allowed her to become the nation’s chief diplomat. “America doesn’t have an easy time dealing with race,” Miss Rice said, adding that members of her family have “endured terrible humiliations.” “What I would like understood as a black American is that black Americans loved and had faith in this country even when this country didn’t love and have faith in them and that’s our legacy,” she said. WashingtonTimes
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Pat Buchanan May Be Done At MSNBCJack Mirkinson7 January 2012The president of MSNBC criticized Pat Buchananthe network’s controversial pundit who has been missing from the air for monthsduring interviews on Saturday and said it is not certain that Buchanan will remain a paid contributor to the network. Buchanan has been absent from MSNBC since late October, just after his latest book was released. The book, “Suicide of a Superpower,” contained
typically incendiary musings on race and immigration, and Buchanan even appeared on an openly “pro-white” radio show to promote it. It’s not altogether certain what made “Suicide” so different from Buchanan’s other work. After all, he has been a lightning rod around issues of race and religion for decades. However, there was also a public call for MSNBC to fire or punish him from African American, Jewish gay rights groups. Hundreds of thousands of people also signed a petition calling for Buchanan’s removal. . . .
MSNBC had not commented on Buchanan’s absence until Griffin spoke to reporters from Deadline and the New York Times during the annual Television Critics’ Association tour in California on Saturday. “The issue has become the nature of some of the statements in the book,” Griffin said. “I dont think the ideas that [Buchanan] put forth [in the book] are appropriate for the national dialogue, much less on MSNBC. He said he and Buchanan were going to meet to discuss the latter’s future on the network, but that he has not yet made up his mind.
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By Russell Simmons
Russell Simmons knows firsthand that wealth is rooted in much more than the stock market. True wealth has more to do with what’s in your heart than what’s in your wallet. Using this knowledge, Simmons became one of America’s shrewdest entrepreneurs, achieving a level of success that most investors only dream about. No matter how much material gain he accumulated, he never stopped lending a hand to those less fortunate. In Super Rich, Simmons uses his rare blend of spiritual savvy and street-smart wisdom to offer a new definition of wealth-and share timeless principles for developing an unshakable sense of self that can weather any financial storm. As Simmons says, “Happy can make you money, but money can’t make you happy.”
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By Michele Alexander
Contrary to the rosy picture of race embodied in Barack Obama’s political success and Oprah Winfrey’s financial success, legal scholar Alexander argues vigorously and persuasively that [w]e have not ended racial caste in America; we have merely redesigned it. Jim Crow and legal racial segregation has been replaced by mass incarceration as a system of social control (More African Americans are under correctional control today… than were enslaved in 1850). Alexander reviews American racial history from the colonies to the Clinton administration, delineating its transformation into the war on drugs. She offers an acute analysis of the effect of this mass incarceration upon former inmates who will be discriminated against, legally, for the rest of their lives, denied employment, housing, education, and public benefits. Most provocatively, she reveals how both the move toward colorblindness and affirmative action may blur our vision of injustice: most Americans know and don’t know the truth about mass incarcerationbut her carefully researched, deeply engaging, and thoroughly readable book should change that.Publishers Weekly
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From The World and Africa, 1965
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posted 26 March 2008
Related files: What price the American empire