I happened to hear Shelby Steele on Michael Medved's logic-straining (but always entertaining) radio program the other day, hawking his recent book on "white guilt." Steele misses the point (Medved misses the point too, but mentioning that is so redundant as to be gratiotous).
It's not about personal responsibility, although personal responsibility is not a bad thing. It's about reclaiming a sense of social resposibility -- and making a fetish of individual responsibility allows us to ignore our responsibilities to one another.
It's not about whites being motivated by guilt, it's about EVERYONE being motivated by a sincere concern for the common good, not merely for self interest.
Well, here's a story of one woman who apparently suffers from neither white guilt nor concern for others. It was forwarded to me by one of my students. In her commentary, she makes a number of observations:
More and more, it seems that hate is today's leading force. We sue each other, cheat each other, gossip--- there are murders, wars... And more recently there have been an abundance of hate crimes. In my opinion, the suppression of our own cries against racism is the cause of this story. All of the small hate crimes leading to this one went ignored.
In a recent e-mail exchange with Howie, I said that I have never, in my half century on Earth, seen America weaker than it is today. He assumed I was speaking militarily. No, I told him, not militarily, for we have enough firepower to destroy the Earth several times over. In my half century on Earth, I have never seen America morally weaker than it is today.
This is a prime piece of evidence, Howie.