Sunday, June 12, 2005

Take the red pill

Gary Younge has an excellent column in the Guardian today.

Selected Quote:

Take the red pill and you are forced to recognise that now is not its own abstract point in time - it is shaped by what has gone before, and will shape what comes after. The rabbit hole of America's racist history goes deep. Follow it far enough and it will take you from death row all the way to the voting booths of Florida....

"Race is not an issue now for younger people," says Jim Prince, the editor of the Neshoba Democrat. "Today, if you're willing to work hard and be honest then you're able to succeed. There is equal opportunity in Philadelphia." If Prince is right, then the poverty, low levels of educational achievement, unemployment and high prison rates among blacks, not just in Philadelphia but elsewhere in the state and the country, can only be explained by black people's genetic inability or inherent unwillingness to seize those opportunities.

Such selective amnesia is not confined to the south or to segregation.
The war on terror is being fought with convenient disregard for the fact that the terrorists the US is fighting today it armed only yesterday, and that among its allies today are vicious dictators that it will undoubtedly attack tomorrow. Nor is it confined to the US. The whole debate around debt relief in the UK takes place as though Britain had no responsibility for the state that Africa is in today.

Those who lambast Africa for its rampant corruption and poor governance forget that most of these dictators have been knowingly propped up by the west. They lecture Africa on the need for democracy apparently unaware that the continent only got a shot at democracy once Europeans left. (emphasis added)|Link|

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