By Jeff Wright
Clash Daily Guest Contributor
Among the abounding commentary following the George Zimmerman acquittal, I continue to hear the phrase, “the black community.” And the White community. And the Hispanic community. “The black community thinks…” or, “the white community should…” But what if I told you: there is no black community or any other race-based community?
Perennial truth-teller, Thomas Sowell, quipped in a recent article, “I am so old that I can remember when most of the people promoting race hate were white.” Well, I am so old that I can remember when “community” meant the town I went to middle school in. It meant the neighborhood where I delivered newspapers. Community was a thing with flesh and bones – and that flesh was red, yellow, black, and white.
Today’s use of the word, “community,” is symptomatic of our increasingly fragmented, racially hypersensitive society. The fact that more and more Americans divide themselves into racial communities is not representative of civil progression, but devolution. “The black community” is merely a political construct. It’s a moral debasement antithetical to the dreams of those who struggled so hard for the advancement of racial equality and harmony in our nation.
The left is quick to criticize conservatives around Martin Luther King, Jr.’s birthday for focusing only on King’s “content of our character” argument while ignoring his statements on income redistribution and militarism. Perhaps there’s some validity to this criticism, but if you’re going to selectively quote MLK, you could hardly do better than “I Have a Dream.”
“I have a dream that my four children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. I have a dream today.” I do not identify with a “white community” because I, too, dream of living in a nation like the one King dreamed of, rather than the balkanized one we are being desensitized and accustomed to today.
In his, “Why I Am Opposed to the War in Vietnam” speech, King said, “We must rapidly begin the shift from a thing-oriented society to a person-oriented society.” King said this in the context of his commentary upon poverty and economic inequality; but, of course, it also applies to race.