"Is the American Dream at the Expense of the American Negro?"


#1

We have a civil rights bill now where an amendment, the fifteenth amendment, nearly a hundred years ago – I hate to sound again like an Old Testament prophet – but if the amendment was not honored then, I would have any reason to believe in the civil rights bill will be honored now.


#2

“Is the American Dream at the Expense of the American Negro?”
Anyone who reads real history books will say YES!
I would like to go on about how it is better now and in ways it actually is better, but man we have so so so much farther to go because better is not there yet. I kinda feel sad that I think my kid will be dead before we are there.


#3

You should hear what Buckley has to say about the idea that the black people in America were forced through slave labor to build much of it. It amounts to, “Yeah, well white people had to also build stuff.”

A towering intellect versus a simpering ninny.


#4

Anyone who thinks that there is one definitive “American Dream” is entertaining a stereotype. The same could be said for many interpretations of “American Negro” as well. A culture of diversity is going to be inspired by quite a few different dreams.

I do agree that much of the US has been built upon the work of minorities who have not been properly recognized and respected for their contributions, and have even been alienated and abused for their efforts by those with feelings of inscrutable entitlement. But being an American and being black presumably do not mean the same things to all people.

Much of the ethnocentric baggage of oppressing black culture has its roots in colonial Europe. But the US is not colonial Europe, and USians often have a feeble grasp of their own heritage to be using it as a high horse from which to view others. The Americas have thousands of years of their own traditions which have nothing to do with Europe, and that is what comes to mind when I hear “America”. Just like Africa and Europe have their own many cultural identities, so do the Americas.

Note also that many “race” distinctions have been relatively stable, with one big exception. There has never been much consensus about what exactly comprises “white” people and culture. It is hard to concede to desperate claims of superiority by a group which has such a difficult time even defining who they are. I am not saying that whiteness is better or worse, but the ever-changing criteria and definitions are IMO quite funny.


#5

Interesting debate. I concur with the motion.

The standing ovation for Baldwin was deserved. The polite applause for Buckley was appropriate.


#6

And yet he’s still put forth as the best the American right has to offer, the canonical example of when US Conservatives were “intellectual” instead of being purely based upon idiotic delusional bigotry.

No. It may be worse now, but that doesn’t mean that it was good then. The Confederates were vile from day one.


#8

William F. Buckley, for all of his flaws, would hardly recognize the current Republican party. At least according to his son, who left the National Review.


#9

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