What do whites owe blacks? And, Why did God create a race whose intellectual capabilities are so far behind those of the rest of mankind?

Paul Kersey, expanding on an idea I shared with him during a recent conversation, writes at his blog:

White America owes Black America … what exactly? Nothing.

Absolutely nothing.

Repeat. White America owes Black America nothing. Nada. Zero. Zilch.

Let this revelation sink in for a second. If need be, give it a minute or two.

Go look at yourself in the mirror and say that first sentence three times. Go ahead… we’ll still be here.


How’d that feel?

It should feel very good, because it represents a liberation from the false and unjust guilt that white America has increasingly imposed on itself over the last 48 years, a guilt which, in keeping with the perverted morality of liberalism, grows greater, more self-crippling, and more suicidal the more whites do to pay for it.

In fact, while Mr. Kersey credits me for the idea, it is not original with me. It came from a friend who, while we were walking in New York’s Central Park in the late 1990s, suddenly launched into a passionate, impromptu, well-reasoned speech explaining how whites have done everything they could possibly do for blacks, and that any debt whites owed to blacks is paid, it’s over. It was one of most brilliant statements I’ve ever heard in my life. Unfortunately, neither I nor my friend wrote down the specific points of the speech afterward. I need to try to dig up the arguments from memory and recreate the speech or something like it. But the overall thesis is clear, and any racial conservative is welcome to try to flesh it out himself.

- end of initial entry -

Paul K. (who is not Paul Kersey) writes:

This question is relevant to the recent furor over John Derbyshire’s “The Talk: Nonblack Version,” in particular its Rule 10. Did any of the corollaries of Rule 10 advise whites to abuse blacks or make trouble for them? No, it advised them to stay away from them. Disengage. Do not get involved in their business. That is what enraged those on the left and right alike—the suggestion that whites steer clear of this troublesome minority. How dare anyone suggest we deny blacks our presence, our ministrations, our involvement? According to Rich Lowry, Jonah Goldberg, Andrew McCarthy, and everyone to their left, that is the very essence of racism. They insist that whites have obligations to blacks that supersede their own rational concerns for safety, security, and peace of mind.

Irv P. writes:

Not only is it true that whites owe blacks nothing, the reverse is true, that blacks owe American whites a lot. If it weren’t for American whites, they (the blacks) would still be in Africa—Africa for goodness sake. Our pollsters should ask blacks if they’d like to be in Africa or in the U.S.A. Is it safe to say the results would be 99 percent USA one percent Africa? (and the one-percenters would be lying).

Even their great, great, great grand daddies and grand mommies would have answered the poll that way, and they were slaves! I don’t say this tongue in cheek, I mean it. We are ALL lucky to be here!

So my black countrymen, shut up and get on with your lives. And get on your knees and thank the Lord everyday for the blessing that he smiled on you and made you part of this amazing place. (Which by the way, you and your liberal enablers are succeeding to dismantle brick by brick, day by day, you damned fools.)

Steve R. writes:

One of my favorite quotes:

Upon Muhammad Ali’s return from his fight in Africa, “the rumble in the jungle,” a reporter asked him what he thought of Africa. He replied, “Thank God my granddaddy got on that boat.”

David J. writes:

Irv P. wrote:

So my black countrymen, shut up and get on with your lives. And get on your knees and thank the Lord everyday for the blessing that he smiled on you and made you part of this amazing place.

I intend no disrespect to the Highest as His ways and thoughts are higher than mine, as Isaiah beautifully put. May God forgive me if I am out of line. However, I cannot help but think that a kinder act of divine beneficence towards blacks would have been to grant them with at least minimal ability to build decent societies for themselves instead of their forever depending on the mercy, largess, and whim of other races. Their civilizational deficiencies always make them vulnerable to easy conquest, enslavement, and colonization by others, as history attests. Even today, their global numbers would precipitously fall by millions (if not by many tens of millions) if foreign aid were ceased. Manifold problems arise when they interact with other groups, leading to a host of unpleasant responses like apartheid, affirmative action, political correction, urban flight, development of ghettos and favelas, heightened police forces, ad nauseam. In short, their egregious inadequacies pose intractable troubles for both themselves and others. I believe that this situation must somehow fit into God’s grand plan, but I indeed struggle with fleshing out the rhyme and reason of it all.

LA replies:

This reminds me of the question you asked me a few months back that I never answered, how do I reconcile belief in God with blacks’ inadequacies.

A correspondent suggested to me an answer, which is not a full answer, but at least a partial one. God wanted the black race to exist because they have their own particular qualities which are a needed part of the whole. Blacks are more basic, more immediate, more primal, and they bring those qualities also into their love of God. Whites are more dry, more abstract, colder. God wanted the warmth and spontaneity of blacks as part of the human picture.

However, this does not answer the very tough problem that you have just raised, which is that given blacks’ limited abilities, ANY interaction between blacks and other races would have to lead to terrible problems and conflict.

Did God then want blacks to be left alone in Africa, without white influence, without the light of Christ brought to the dark continent? That’s also hard to believe.

Here’s a possible answer: Perhaps God is a traditionalist conservative! Perhaps he wanted and expected mankind to be able to deal with inequality much better than we have done—to recognize and accept the fact of inequality and not, on one hand, bend ourselves out of shape trying to make the unequal equal, nor, on the other hand, use the lesser abilities of others as an opportunity to oppress and enslave them. Obviously we have failed the test. Perhaps the test can only be passed when mankind reaches a higher level of evolution. I’m not speaking of Darwinian evolution, of course, but of spiritual and civilizational evolution.

Renee writes:

Irv wrote: “Even their great, great, great grand daddies and grand mommies would have answered the poll that way, and they were slaves! I don’t say this tongue in cheek, I mean it. We are ALL lucky to be here!”

What a stupid, repulsive, and hypocritical thing to say. What a perfect demonstration of what makes people fail to take the people on this site seriously.

Do you know anything about what it was like on the Middle Passage? Can you really say that living in a shack on a plantation, getting whipped, degraded, having your children SOLD , and having no protection is better than living in Africa? You have no idea what that is like. You are NOT in a position to say they would be lucky and there is no evidence they did feel that way. If they felt so lucky why did whites need to go to such lengths to keep them on plantations? Why were they trying to escape?

It is stupid of you to say that, because you clearly don’t know what the conditions were like. They would not have been better. Just because it was better for those people who got to pursue liberty doesn’t mean it was great for everyone.

It is repulsive because you apparently believe that one should be grateful to live in a world where someone OWNS your children for a few goodies (these goodies being cold bacon and a shack, two things you can get in Africa). Would you sell out your own family so quickly? Can you really tell your family members that if given a choice you would take a world of violence and slave labor for ALL of them to live as an American slave over life in Africa?

It is hypocritical, because at its heart is the most LIBERAL sort of thinking. What is more morally relative than your ideas. Man cannot live on bread alone. One should not accept degradation, abuse, sexual assault and having ones children sold for anything.

Maybe you just don’t know what it means to have principles you wouldn’t compromise. Some people have a sense of dignity. Finally, if slavery is something to be grateful for because at least slaves were in America, then living in a world controlled by liberalism is something to be grateful for because the richest countries have it. Even if it does collapse and people are victims of violence at least you got to enjoy yourself. Isn’t that all that matters?

Renee continues:

According to Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Middle_Passage

“Slaves resisted in a variety of ways. The two most common types of resistance were refusal to eat and suicide. Suicide was a frequent occurrence, often by refusal of food or medicine or jumping overboard, as well as by a variety of other opportunistic means.[12] Over the centuries, some African peoples, such as the Kru, came to be understood as holding substandard value as slaves, because they developed a reputation for being too proud for slavery, and for attempting suicide immediately upon losing their freedom.” Slave rebellions once they were in the Americas was also common.

Really sounds like they were all so happy to be going to America. If you want to get people to stop trying to validate the worst crimes committed by members of their group, you might want to try doing the same.

LA replies:

I would just point out that Renee’s point about the sufferings of slaves, which is a perfectly legitimate point, is relevant only to Irv’s comment, or rather to a part of Irv’s comment. The thread as a whole was not saying that the slaves should have been happy to be slaves. Therefore Renee’s remark that Irv’s comment is the sort of thing that discredits VFR is off-base.

Irv’s main point, at least as it struck me, was that blacks living in America now should be grateful to be here, an idea so obvious that no one could take exception to it. His point about black slaves being happy to be here was secondary to that. I didn’t pick up on it when I was posting his comment; if I had, I would have disagreed with it too, in large part.

Also, there is a perception in some quarters that because I personally post all the comments at VFR, if a comment is posted without a disagreement by me, that means I agree with it. That is not true. Many times I post comments with which I don’t agree, without replying to them myself.

Kristor writes:

On the question of how to reconcile God’s existence with racial differences in intelligence, we might as well ask why God didn’t make all men as smart as Isaac Newton, or give us wings so we could fly like the birds; we might as well ask why he didn’t make the canines in such a way that they could all compose Baroque music and write poetry. Indeed, we might as well ask why God made anything at all that was less splendid than the angels. But such questions are simply inapposite to reality. They mistake the point of creation, which is the realization of beauty. There are all sorts of goods that can be realized in our world, and no one sort of creature could possibly express more than a few of them. But they are all worthy of expression, simply because they are beautiful. So creation is multifarious, and things differ. Some are more noble, some less. That’s why hierarchy is natural—natural in the sense that it is born with the world, as part of what it means to be a world. There is a hierarchy even in the world of heaven, among the saints and angels, where some are higher and some lower.

There’s nothing wrong with this situation. In fact, it’s metaphysically unavoidable in any world that has more than one kind of thing; so, there couldn’t possibly be anything wrong with this situation. Indeed, it is the best possible way to arrange things. For think: if God had made nothing less splendid than the angels, then the world would have been without the beauties of all sorts of things that are deeply delightful. Think for example of a cosmos that had no cats. It would be poorer, no?

Blacks are not less good than other men; that’s like saying jaguars are not as good as cheetahs because they are not as fast. Blacks are just good in different ways than other men, good for different climates and, ergo, different ways of life. Is their generic mix of weaknesses and strengths less than ideally suited to the sort of cultures that other sorts of men, with other generic mixtures of weaknesses and strengths, have built for themselves? How not? Why should we be surprised at that? Is a zebra suitable for use as a war horse, or a plow horse? Is a llama?

We get into trouble when we start thinking that everything ought to be equally nice and noble and good, and all in the same way. It simply can’t be done. And since it can’t be done, it ought not to be done, and we should not trouble ourselves about it. Unfortunately, for all of us, liberals are utterly fixated on this notion of sameness. It’s their golden calf.

LA replies:

I don’t know that Kristor has addressed David J.’s profound and troubling question. It’s not just a matter of a natural hierarchy, it’s not just a matter of most men being less smart than Isaac Newton; it’s a matter of blacks being so far behind other races that any interaction between blacks and other races inevitably produces terrible and intractable problems.

June 10

Laura Wood writes:

I disagree with the statement that we don’t owe blacks anything.

Blacks deserve higher standards from whites, who are indeed partially to blame for the state of black America. By standards, I don’t mean in the area of careerist achievement, but in virtue and right living. [LA replies: I agree with you. But note that when we speak of what whites owe blacks, we are speaking in the context of traditional moral values, not in the context of liberalism.]

Regarding Renee’s point, she fails to mention that blacks were also captured and enslaved by blacks in Africa and were often brutalized there too. The choice was not between a carefree existence in Africa and suffering in America. Slavery was not a good thing, and it has never been applauded at VFR, but the descendants of slaves can reasonably view it as a grave wrong from which they have in some ways benefited.

Bartholomew writes:

David J. said, ” … a kinder act of divine beneficence towards blacks would have been to grant them with at least minimal ability to build decent societies for themselves instead of forever depending on the mercy, largess, and whim of other races … In short, [blacks’] egregious inadequacies pose intractable troubles for both themselves and others.”

His question reminds me of this passage from Romans (verses 10 to 23), and particularly verse 20:

10 And not only this; but when Rebecca also had conceived by one, even by our father Isaac; 11 (For the children being not yet born, neither having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works, but of him that calleth;) 12 It was said unto her, The elder shall serve the younger. 13 As it is written, Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated.

14 What shall we say then? Is there unrighteousness with God? God forbid. 15 For he saith to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion. 16 So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy.

17 For the scripture saith unto Pharaoh, Even for this same purpose have I raised thee up, that I might shew my power in thee, and that my name might be declared throughout all the earth. 18 Therefore hath he mercy on whom he will have mercy, and whom he will he hardeneth.

19 Thou wilt say then unto me, Why doth he yet find fault? For who hath resisted his will? 20 Nay but, O man, who art thou that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to him that formed it, Why hast thou made me thus? 21 Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonour?

22 What if God, willing to shew his wrath, and to make his power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath fitted to destruction: 23 And that he might make known the riches of his glory on the vessels of mercy, which he had afore prepared unto glory,”

To the children of God it has always been a mystery why some are spiritually chosen by God and others are not. Here, Paul tells us that God determines this (verse 11), and it’s inappropriate for us to ask why (19-20).

I am not citing this Scripture to compare blacks to Edomites and Egyptians. I am saying that if God has built into some men spiritual inadequacies, how much less surprising should we find it that he has built into others earthly, material inadequacies as well?

I do not mean to speak for Kristor, but I think this might have been what he had in mind when he wrote that, “Some are more noble, some less” (Cf verse 21).

Mr. Auster wrote in response: “It’s not just a matter of natural hierarchy … it’s a matter of blacks’ being so far behind … ” But are the problems of blacks so bad, and so intractable in light of salvation and eternity? If they are ultimately saved—and a growing number are finding salvation—will they care in the end that the atheist Japanese could build computers? I don’t say this to cheapen the Africans’ struggles and anguish nor the Japanese accomplishments and achievements. Not at all. I mean to say that the material inequalities between Africans and other races, which seem to us so intractable, ultimately pale in comparison to the spiritual inequalities between the damned and the saved. And the Bible offers us no “fairer” an explanation of that equality than the simple “God wills it”. I think we’ll have to content ourselves with the same explanation for this far lesser, material inequality between Africans and non-Africans.

As an aside, black Christians can take solace (and non-black Christians a warning) in these words of Jesus, “Again I say to you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” Mathew 19:24

LA replies:

Regarding Jesus’ reference to rich men and poor men: given the enormous sense of entitlement and self-esteem that blacks now exhibit, and the suicidal guilt and deference that whites exhibit, it is the blacks who are the “rich men” in our society and the whites who are the “poor men.”

Paul Henri writes:

Both Irv P. and Renee cite insufficient evidence to conclude whether or not American slaves believed they were lucky to be in America rather than in Africa. The evidence conclusively shows Irv is accurate in his conclusion that slaves would have said they were lucky to be slaves in America rather than return to Africa: the slaves and their black spokesmen never tried to get back to Africa. Some first generation slaves, all of whom were young, probably had some blinding nostalgia for their early days and indeed might have wanted to return. But we can only suppose. Moreover, these first generation slaves were a tiny group relative to the numbers born in America.

Renee’s evidence is merely evidence that slavery was harsh. She does not address what slaves thought about returning to Africa.

Life for many whites was at least as harsh as it was for slaves in America. Slaves did not starve to death as many whites did. Slaves were not homeless as many whites were. White miners and sharecroppers (who at least had jobs) were little better off than slaves. One might conclude that the infant mortality rate was higher among vast numbers of underfed, unsheltered whites.

Where did many, and maybe most, slaves remain after the Civil War? They remained on plantations or in the South. One can still drive by brutally hot cotton fields and see the fields being worked by black women dressed as they were before the Civil War.

An anecdote might help. During the 1930s, my mother’s mother had no conscience towards her four children. They raised themselves. They had one dress each and little or no food. My mother’s grandmother was an angel who would take them in one or two at a time when their mother allowed it. The angel owned a hotel and had several black women working for her. One day, one of the black women gave my mother a penny because of my mother’s plight.

LA writes:

Since the topic of how blacks felt about slavery has come up, readers are free to comment on it. For myself, however, it’s not a topic in which I take much interest. If slavery was worse than Africa, or if slavery was better than Africa, or even if blacks had not come here as slaves at all but voluntarily as immigrants, it would not have changed the fundamental problem. No matter how blacks came here, once they were here in significant numbers, their lower abilities would have led to whites being blamed for black failure and dysfunction, which would have led to suicidal white guilt.

There are only two ways for suicidal white guilt to have been avoided: for blacks not to have come here, or for whites to have grasped the non-liberal truth of inherent racial differences.

LA writes:

Relative to the original topic of this thread, a reader has posted a video of a black man who keeps asking, “What is it, Negro, that the white man still owes you?”

Irv P. writes:

Renee, it was callous and irresponsible of me to trivialize the harshness of slavery with the comment I made. Your righteous indignation towards me is well deserved, and I am humbled.

Patrick H. writes:

In response to the question that has been raised in this thread, “Why did God create a race whose intellectual capabilities are so far behind those of the rest of mankind?”, my answer is similar to what I said in the post, “What is it, Negro, that the white man still owes you?”

God made blacks with their inferior abilities in order to be objects of our altruism.

Our real altruism. Altruism per se, as such. Altruism as such is not giving someone what he is owed (that is justice). Altruism is not giving someone something because you’re afraid. (That is cowardice.) Altruism is not giving someone something in the expectation that they will no longer need your help. (That is calculation, or naivete, take your pick.) Altruism is not giving someone what he needs in order for yourself to look good and feel good (that is liberalism, especially if what you’re giving isn’t yours to give in the first place.)

Altruism as such is giving someone something for no other reason than his need, and his common humanity. Blacks are needy, they always will be, their lack of ability will never change. Any help we give altruistically is an exercise in selfless giving, prompted by the recognition of need, and the humanity of the one in need. And all selfless giving has its reason in turn: it is for the greater glory of God. Need elicits altruism. And altruism is for the glory of God.

Blacks present to us the face of utter dependency. And it is a human face, no matter how much we might prefer to think otherwise. One day, when we are very old, it will be our face, too. It was our face when we were very young. But while dependency is the state of humanity obviously and unavoidably in infancy and old age, in sickness and despair, it is the reality of our whole lives as humans. We are all abjectly dependent on God. We all lack ability compared to Him. We all need Him, and He does not need us. Everything He gives us is a selfless gift of love. God’s creation of us, white and black, is an act of pure altruism.

So our altruistic response to the face of black dependency is a manifestation of, a participation in, a limited human instance of the love of God for his creatures. Our altruistic response to black dependency is therefore the tribute we pay in gratitude to God for His gift to us of sheer existence, helpless and dependent on Him for that existence as we are. When we give selflessly, we do it to glorify the Lord. In the end, it is why we do anything good. To glorify God. .

Why is there suffering, some atheists ask? Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam. For the greater glory of God. Why are there people who as a group are so lacking in ability as to always be in need? Same reason. AMDG. Blacks need us, and we need God. They’re here to remind us of that truth, and to bring out the best within us.

Black people exist for the glory of God. So do we.

Aaron S. writes:

Perhaps you might remember that we discussed these issues a bit a couple of years ago.

I agreed then, and still agree now, with the practical suggestions you made at the time, but I’ll admit that as a general question about the world, the whole theme still bothers me.

Kristor’s argument is an oldie but goodie, but I think it serves more as a rejoinder to the general metaphysical quandary of “Why can’t x be more perfect?” than it addresses the problem we have here. If claims about beauty are to be more specific than praise of the Divine and his plan of creation, then they have to include some experiential element. One way (older) philosophers attempted to explain beauty was to suggest that it sensitizes us in some way, or awakens us, to the presence of the Divine. I don’t know if we have to say that’s *all* beauty is, but the present issue concerning black abilities is difficult in the first place because there seems to be something so senseless, counter-purposive, or just plain ugly about the situation. Human reason and understanding are limited, defective. Surely, we’re missing something. Still, the natural lawyer in me says this observation is not enough; perhaps this problem is meant to be uncomfortable. It should rain upon us and unsettle us, and should not be smiled at from under a bright parasol of providential optimism.

Therefore, I think you’re onto something concerning social or spiritual development. Of course, liberalism does not even permit us to see the difficulty as it stands. I just suggested to a couple of friends that in the coming decades it is likely that science will not let the issue be. An honest discussion like this one is invaluable, because I think it’s likely that race could become a major theodical issue in the 21st century.

Kristor writes:

Is it really true that ANY interaction between blacks and other races is bound to lead to terrible problems? I should think that honest, peaceful trade would not be problematic for either side.

The trouble begins when people find they must routinely behave in ways that contravene their true natures. When Africans and African cultures are immersed among European peoples and cultures, so that in order to get along they must try to behave as if they were Europeans, the requirements of daily life then force their betrayal of their patrimony. And there is no reason to think that blacks value their patrimony less than we do ours. If we were not forced by their proximity to expect and require them to behave as we think proper, and if they likewise were not forced by the exigencies of their circumstances to behave in ways that seem unnatural and foreign to them—with the expectable result that they often fail thereat—the incongruities of our two cultures would not generate so much friction and discomfort.

This all argues for separation, doesn’t it? In fact, it argues for nations. It argues for the supposition that where possible, informal interactions between incongruous cultures ought to be undertaken by only the most talented, intelligent and flexible people from each side: merchants, scholars, artists, statesmen—and dukes. Ordinary folks—I count myself as such—should live together with other ordinary folks of the same type. And this is in fact what people do. They settle in neighbourhoods of folks similar to them, with whose ways they feel most comfortable; they choose the table in the cafeteria where people similar to them are already seated; they tend to marry people from their own nation.

Interactions between the ordinary folks of incongruous cultures ought to be constrained by formalized custom and ritual, in which both sides can take some pleasure at the coordination of their differences, and discharge the tensions that arise from their mutual contradictions in ways that cause no harm. A great example is to be seen in the daily ritual of closing the border between India and Pakistan. It is a wonderful thing to watch. Another may be seen in the customs and rituals of diplomats and high military officials.

June 11

Ben S. writes:

You have said (as I understand it) that you do not have a problem with the notion of change within a species through natural selection. I abide by the Sailerian explanation of intellectual differences between blacks and whites on the basis of different selective pressures in their native environments, with survival in temperate climes requiring more elaborate technology and longer term planning. The question of why God produced intellectual differences between blacks and whites thus corresponds to the question of why He allowed humanity to develop in different environments over hundreds of thousands of years before reaching the modern state. Perhaps the answer was simply that God preferred to create life, and eventually humanity, by a gradual and iterative process, rather than by abrupt and direct processes of the sort imputed to Him by Young Earth Creationists. In sum, I see racial differences as something akin to deserts or hurricanes; they are natural effects that could not have been avoided without distorting the larger order God gave to the universe.

Jake F. writes:

Re your question, “Why did God create a race whose intellectual capabilities are so far behind those of the rest of mankind?”

The question of black intellectual capabilities seems to be a red herring. A functioning social unit of any size needs rules, respect for tradition, and an acknowledgement of people’s proper roles in society. Blacks haven’t stomped on those requirements over the past few centuries: The more intelligent races have, through the very intellect that they treasure.

Moreover, though it’s easy to see how quickly less-intelligent people can fall into barbarism, it’s also easy to see how quickly more-intelligent people can fall into barbarism, too: Marx was Jewish, Stalin was white, Mao was Chinese, and all of them had strong intellects. Blacks could not destroy in a thousand years what whites and Asians have destroyed in a hundred.

I don’t say these things out of a sense of white guilt or a misplaced need for equality of blame. I just think it’s clear that there are strengths and weaknesses of the various races, and it’s reasonable to find examples of how those strengths and weaknesses play out.

Another example: White people twist themselves up into knots over something as plain as the fact that homosexual couplings aren’t the same as heterosexual couplings; we invent words like “heteronormative” and are willing to abstract out the entire notion of gender when we talk about marriage, as if marriage and gender didn’t go hand in hand. Blacks, meanwhile, just see homosexuality as unnatural, and therefore vote against homosexual marriage. They walk the better path in that case. [LA replies: The black leadership has recently joined with the homosexual movement in supporting homosexual “marriage” and the homosexual rights movement generally, disproving the conservative belief in “conservative blacks.”]

So I don’t buy the idea that blacks are somehow worse than whites, even though they apparently have lower intellectual capabilities. I know too many smart white idiots for that, and I’ll take a wise simpleton over a dozen smart white idiots every time.

Let me poke at something else: Yes, blacks seem to have a harder time succeeding on their own than whites do. But does their presence among us bring “terrible problems and conflict”? That’s not clear to me. Were things so bad before Malcolm X and MLK? Weren’t there good black neighborhoods, good black markets, even thriving black areas (e.g., Harlem) where whites would go for entertainment and then return home again? When blacks live in a framework of rules, respect for tradition, and an acknowledgement of people’s proper roles in society—even though that framework may need to be established by someone else—are they so bad? It seems possible that the problem is the destruction of that framework by whites, not the nature of blacks themselves.

I also don’t buy the argument that blacks were created by God to help white people practice altruism (or, perhaps more properly, charity). On the one hand, it smacks too much of the intellectual elite telling me that they know what’s best for me; on the other, there must be more to it than that. One might as well argue that that was his reason for creating all non-Jews, so that the Jews would have the ability to show other nations the way to God; even if that is one reason, I hardly think that that’s the only reason non-Jews are on Earth.

I think Bartholomew showed wisdom when he pointed to the spiritual abilities of blacks. Even if, left to their own devices, they would be at a lower level of material wealth than others, their salvation is more important. Although you dismissed that by talking about blacks’ current sense of entitlement, that’s merely an artifact of the culture they’re in right now; they’re in a dysfunctional culture that practically demands that they feel entitled, so it’s hardly fair to take their current sense of entitlement as indicative of something deeper.

Laura G. writes:

Regarding the issue of why the Almighty might provide that one race be burdened with lesser IQ potential, I have to put my two cents in. The children I see as a pediatrician are brought to my clinic by police and social services for evaluation for suspected abuse and neglect. We have substantive interviews of the information accrued by the agency(ies) that brought the child, of the child’s primary caretaker, and of the child. Our interviews include “multitrauma” issues, which means that we are assessing the child’s situation primarily for physical abuse, inappropriate discipline, injurious environment, all forms of neglect, medical needs and neglect, and sexual abuse. I do not keep records regarding the races of our patients, but they are pretty much evenly divided between children from black families and from white families. The children themselves are aged from newborns to age 16. We look for mental health consequences of trauma, physical findings, sensory details of the event(s), safety needs, and social support.

VFR’s gentle readers can probably correctly imagine that issues of alcoholism, drug use, family disintegration, poverty, illiteracy, domestic violence, pornography, abandonment, prostitution, poor health, and so forth are alive and well in the living circumstances of many of my patients. About once yearly a child comes to clinic accompanied by his two biological parents, and it is so rare that I always have to be assure myself that the two of them are actually genuine biologic parents. So, that is part of the setting, and it pertains to both blacks and whites.

Nevertheless, there do seem to be some significant differences between the situations of children according to race. For one, I always ask the child about religious attachments, because that is a huge social support when present. Black children are almost always in the fold of a church’s helping system, whites not as consistently. More to the point, the black mothers and grandmothers are more often deeply committed to the support and structures of their Christian beliefs, and verbalize that it is what sustains them. It is an unequivocal belief, deeply felt, unambiguous, and it is being fully transmitted to their children. The examples are stunning, but for one example, I recently asked a girl if she was having nightmares, and she said that God had sent angels to protect her from bad dreams about what was happening. That sort of response happens all the time, and especially from the black children.

Others of your readers have mentioned the superficial smarts along with the attrition of the soul of too many whites. Many black parents or grandparents tell me that they know that they are here on earth to carry out the religious instruction with which they have been blessed. More and more I have come to believe also that all of us humans are destined to become dry ashes if we cut our attachment to our religion, and the speed with which white cultures are implementing religion-free spaces is stunning. Blacks and black churches appear to be an area somewhat less susceptible to the worst of that scourge So maybe one of the mysterious reasons for the Almighty to have provided for a culture of persons who differ in other ways (IQ) from the otherwise seemingly more capable white culture is that, in the end, a culture that is incapable of inspiring its own young with a drive for life and a realization of the presence of higher powers may be the one that is destined to die out. In any event, I am always filled with deep admiration for the cheerful way that relatives take on the difficulties of raising someone else’s child (usually a grandmother raising her grandchild) when the child’s parent has trashed her own life, and the stalwart religiosity that strengthens these surrogate parents. We should all see the blessings of our own lives with such clarity, and some blacks seem to provide particularly strong role models.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at June 09, 2012 01:02 PM | Send

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