How a New York Times Columnist Hurts Fellow Blacks – by Dennis Prager


If you had hope that the election of a black president might improve black-white relations in America, reading the column by Charles M. Blow in Saturday’s New York Times will effectively crush it.

Mr. Blow, who is black, wrote of his despair that the election of Barack Obama will achieve anything positive for blacks or for black-white relations.

In fact, according to Mr. Blow, and one suspects the great majority of black and white liberals, things have not only not gotten better for blacks, racism — meaning, of course, white racism against blacks since no other form of racism is discussed in the New York Times — has actually increased.

His proof for this charge?

“We are now inundated with examples of overt racism on a scale to which we are unaccustomed.”

And what are his examples of “overt racism on a scale to which we are unaccustomed”? He provided two.

The first and presumably most important is that “Racially offensive images of the first couple are so prolific online that Google now runs an apologetic ad with the results of image searches of them.”

Having never seen a racially offensive image of the first couple, I was curious about what Mr. Blow was referring to. Though I spend hours a day researching on the Web, I had somehow overlooked how “inundated” the Web is with racist images. Luckily, Mr. Blow provides a URL — an Internet link — to make his case.

I clicked on the link, and sure enough, there is a statement by Google titled “An explanation of our search results,” in which Google notes that “Sometimes Google search results from the Internet can include disturbing content, even from innocuous queries. We assure you that the views expressed by such sites are not in any way endorsed by Google.”

The statement continues along those lines, but there is not a word about racism, blacks, the first couple, or anything related. It is a generic apology, one that I had never in fact encountered.

So not having had any luck corroborating Mr. Blow’s accusation of “overt racism on a scale to which we are unaccustomed” on the Internet, I searched “first couple,” clicked on “images,” even making sure that the Google filter was turned off, and all I saw were hundreds of beautiful images of the beautiful-looking first couple.

I then searched on “Michelle and Barack Obama pictures” and got similar results.

One must conclude that Mr. Blow wildly exaggerated, if not made it up, when he wrote that America is “inundated” with “overt racism” on the Internet (or anywhere else).

His second argument for an increasingly racist America is: “And it’s not all words and images (again, none of which I saw); it’s actions as well. According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s 2008 hate crimes data released last week, anti-black hate crimes rose 4 percent from 2007…”

Wow. A 4 percent increase in anti-black hate crime.

Is that an indication of a major increase in anti-black racism in America? You decide.

According to the FBI Hate Crime statistics, in 2007, 3,434 blacks were victims of a hate crime, and in 2008, the number increased to 3,596 — an increase of 162. Given that there are about 40 million blacks in America and about 260 million non-blacks, to charge America with increasing racism based on an increase of 162 incidents of racism is absurd and morally indefensible. To put it statistically, the increase, as a proportion of the black population, was .0004 percent.

Moreover, the number itself, 3,434, is incredibly small for such a large population. And bear in mind two additional factors: One has no way of knowing how many of those 3,434 incidents were committed by non-whites, such as Hispanics; and of those 3,434 hate crimes, a total of one was murder, not one was a rape, a tiny 386 were aggravated assaults, and 1,257 were “acts of intimidation,” not acts of violence.

Only to black and white liberals, including most New York Times readers, who e-mailed Mr. Blow’s column more than almost any article in the Times, do these statistics describe a racist, or increasingly racist, society.

The column is a fine example of liberal attitudes toward blacks and whites — the latter are largely racist, the former are largely victims. It is a picture that exists only in the liberal mind, but as long as so many blacks believe it, there is little hope for large-scale black progress at this time. There is no chance that black America’s economic or social problems will be solved until black America rejects the liberal narrative of endemic white racism and black victimization. That is why, though Mr. Blow’s column is a calumny against America, it mainly damages his fellow African-Americans.

  • jerryboris

    No one has written yet, that the percentage of black voters in the polls, has NOT diminished since election day.
    Black support for OBAMA was 98% in the election,
    It is preposterous to continualy dredge up RACISM, while avoiding note that black vote FOR Obama HAS NOT changed one bit, despite his many flubs.
    Someone ought to note, “How can suppoert for a 98% black vote charge the voters AGAINST OBAMA, as racist?
    Just a case of not abandoning a good racket. Someone ought AT LEAST to note the constancy!
    JERRY BORIS PHILA 215-557-7761

  • HostileKnowledge

    I don't resent Obama because of the color of his skin. I would vote for someone like Thomas Sowell in a heartbeat.

    No, I despise Obama because he's hell bent on the complete destruction of this country's free market system and its freedoms.

    Obama is a hard left socialist cockroach.

  • keithrage

    My sentiments exactly HK
    History will record him as the worst president the U.S. has ever had.

  • navigator

    Racism is one of many sad aspects of the human condition, like greed, that will not entirely go away while humans are on this earth. Certain political and economic approaches help, however, and others hurt.

    Current “liberal” and “progressive” approaches hurt. To continually wallow in group-identity politics keeps some groups feeling victimized, and others feeling demonized, and still others manipulated by guilt. These approaches may get votes, but they prevent healing.

    “Color-blind” policies, and truly open-market policies, help. Within that context, intermarriage and shared worship should increase the level of unity, and decrease the level of racism.

  • webeers

    Blow and his sympathizers are the real racists. But this most honest people know, the rest are lemmings and shills. Nothing new here.

  • kbond

    History will record him as the worst president the U.S. has ever had. – – WE WISH IT WERE THAT EASY KEITHRAGE! You and I both know that O will certainly go down as the worst president in history…only as far as you and I speak it. Follow me:

    History, as recorded by book publishers is sanitized and homogenized in such a way that the excriment left behind is a “polished gold turd”…We know he really stinks worse than Jimmy Carter, yet future generations will read how wonderfull O was….Its a travesty man. Welcome to Quasi Communism in 2009 in the USA folks….we are doomed!

    Read any story anywhere published by the main stream media dorks. O can do no wrong. When he is wrong, they brush it aside. When his is really wrong, they make up excuses and quickly ignore the issue. Folks, when is this going to end? WHEN!?!?!?!

    • MartySK

      Folks, when is this going to end? WHEN!?!?!?!

      November 2012

  • Interested

    There is a very real, extremely dangerous, ongoing and growing problem, totally ignored by the media and academics, and that is black on white crime.

  • andrewnitzberg

    The hearing of racism even in non-race oriented issues and discussions is a real problem.

    The “progressives” seem to believe that they are correct and history is on their side to a degree such that all disagreement is based on emotion [racism] and not logic or experience. This is a classic 'straw-man' argument.

    I despair that there will ever be a discussion only of the policies of Obama. It will always be the good people versus the bad people.

  • USMCSniper

    Somebody needs to inform Mr Blow-It-Out His- Ass that racism is when the dispensing of and/or withholding of privileges (affirmitive action, set asides, demands for reparations, college entrance) and/or punishments (moratoriums on executions for convicted Black murderers) is based on a person's race.

  • trickyblain

    Yes! Just like how this Web site publishes articles — day in, day out — that label anyone critical of Israeli policy as anti-Semitic bigots and Jew-haters. But wait. I didn't know this was a liberal Web publication.

  • GJTryon

    Sounds like you're in an “All in the Family” scenario, webeers. Well, you know what they said after 9-11: we're all Archie Bunkers now!

  • Andres de Alamaya

    Sorry, Mr. Blow's perception is right. For over six months now I got the feeling that Obama will set back by over fifty years the progress of race relations in America. His presence has brought into the light unsavory elements of the black community for which we nigger-lovers made excuses or ignored. I predict that America's experience with Obama will make it extremely difficult for blacks to get elected to public office in the future.