Skip to comments.P21: Black Leader Uncovers Modern-Day Civil Rights Scam
Posted on 12/10/2003 5:20:30 PM PST by mhking
In the early 20th century, black educational pioneer Booker T. Washington noted: "There is another class of coloured people who make a business of keeping the troubles, the wrongs and the hardships of the Negro race before the public. Having learned that they are able to make a living out of their troubles, they have grown into the settled habit of advertising their wrongs - partly because they want sympathy and partly because it pays. Some of these people do not want the Negro to lose their grievances, because they do not want to lose their jobs."
Sounds like Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, Maxine Waters and Louis Farrakhan to me.
This passage opens Reverend Jesse Lee Peterson's new book SCAM: How the Black Leadership Exploits Black America. Peterson, the founder and president of the Los Angeles community assistance organization Brotherhood Organization of A New Destiny and a member of Project 21, lays into the modern day civil rights establishment in ways that would make even conservatives wince.
Peterson shows how this "other class of colored people" profits from black misery and racial strife just as Washington described almost a century ago. In exposing these modern black "leaders," Peterson says the problems of the black community are due to a lack of moral character and not racism. In other words, we no longer need leaders - we need change.
A chapter is devoted to the abysmal failure of the modern NAACP and why it should now be boycotted for being completely out of step with the needs of black America.
Over 90 percent of black homicides are committed by other blacks. Instead of addressing the root causes of black-on-black crime, the NAACP blames gun manufacturers. The average black public high school graduate, in reality, only has an eighth-grade education. Yet the NAACP vehemently opposes helpful school choice options that are overwhelming supported by black parents.
Over 70 percent of black babies are now born out of wedlock. Julian Bond and Kweisi Mfume, however, prefer to tackle more important issues such as the supposed lack of minorities on popular television shows. Peterson concludes, "If the NAACP were truly concerned about black issues, it would focus most of its attention on black-on-black crime, restoring morality in black men and supporting policies that strengthen black families... But as these moves would increase the real-world welfare of blacks... the NAACP wants nothing to do with them."
SCAM notes how the fear of being labeled a "racist" leaves many whites holding their tongues when things run amuck in the black community (yet black liberals have virtual carte blanche to spew all manner of invective). This fear prevents an honest dialogue about race (take the recent fallout over Rush Limbaugh's comments about NFL quarterback Donovan McNabb, for example), and serves the interests of self-appointed black leaders and their liberal white sympathizers. Peterson urges whites not to fall prey to such psychological bullying.
Peterson's organization holds an annual "National Day of Repudiation of Jesse Jackson," so it's no surprise he saves the lion's share of venom for the self-proclaimed heir-apparent to Dr. Martin Luther King. Citing investigative reporter Kenneth Timmerman's best-selling tell-all, Shakedown, Peterson rips into Jackson like a buzz saw. He also discusses why he is presently suing Jackson and his associates for an alleged assault that occurred in December of 2001. Peterson has clearly not been afraid to publicly challenge the black establishment, sometimes at considerable risk to his own safety.
SCAM is more than just a stinging indictment of the modern-day civil rights establishment. It's also a critically compassionate look at what's really plaguing the black community - in particular, the plight of the black family - and what can and must be done to reverse the downward spiral in which many black men, women and children find themselves.
Peterson's ten-point plan on how the black community can realize its full potential and achieve true spiritual freedom is worth of a full-length book in itself.
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Darryn "Dutch" Martin is a member of the National Advisory Council of the African-American leadership network Project 21. Comments many be sent to Project21@nationalcenter.org.
Note: New Visions Commentaries reflect the views of their author, and not necessarily those of Project 21.
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