A few years ago, former NAACP President Benjamin Jealous hit the nail squarely on the head when he said, “There’s sort of a persistent misperception that talking about race is black folk’s burden. Ultimately, only men can end sexism, and only white people can end racism.”
African-Americans have been willing to dialogue with whites on race for some time. America’s white community is the drawback keeping inter-racial talk from occurring.
The Republican Party is primarily made up of white people. As it does with poverty and economic inequality, the GOP rarely, if ever, acknowledges racism still exists in our country.
With the ball in their court, Republicans should take the initiative to promote and begin to engage in long-overdue dialogue on race. The white church also has a big responsibility, morally and spiritually, to contribute to the dialogue process.
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We need many white Martin Luther King Jr.’s today.
I agree with a statement written over 50 years ago by author James Baldwin, “The Negro is the key figure in his country, and the American future is precisely as bright or as dark as his.” Talking about race in America is white folks’ burden.
Paul L. Whiteley Sr.