I ran across two videos recently that I thought worth sharing given the trajectory of some of the conversations here. The first is a woman I have never seen nor heard of before this morning. She is discussing the fallacy of “white privilege” in the current era:
The second is a talk given by Larry Elder, which resonated with me on numerous levels:
- I can identify with not really connecting with my late father on an intimate level until my mid-20s. Elder discusses some of the ways men of our father’s generation coped and compensated for the disadvantages they encountered because of their race, and how their stoicism in the face of the difficulties transferred over into much of their parenting. My dad wasn’t nearly as angry as his, but there were many things we couldn’t appreciate until adulthood, and which he didn’t bother explaining. Like Elder’s father, mine also worked hard, owned property, and ran successful businesses at a time when the only thing they had going for them was a strong work ethic and upright character.
- My husband was a young man who despite engaging in a fair amount of reckless behavior, also made good on his innate mechanical and hands-on ability. Before partying all night on Saturday for instance, he would spend Saturday mornings accompanying the older electrician who lived down the street from him whose own sons weren’t interested in his trade. In other words, he maximized his potential and in so doing affirmed Booker T. Washington’s assertion that a man who proves himself an asset can make it regardless of race.
- I generally offer a pretty wide caveat of exception for young men of today because they have a harder economic climate to navigate than my husband did 20+ years ago. Likewise, my husband had a less difficult social climate than my father did 60 years ago. However, I have encountered a couple of young husbands over the past 2 years who have given me pause with regard to that. Neither of them went to college but both (one white, one black) have defied all of the odds when faced with a family started at a less than ideal time. They have worked hard and provided good lives for their wives and children. In other words, even in this economic and educational climate, they have proven that necessity can pull out of a person what society claims is not possible. On to the Larry Elder video (worth the 30 minutes of your life):