When the Civil Rights Bill passed in 1964, everyone I know was pleased. They relaxed and felt good that the long fight was over.
However, undoing all the trouble that black folks have endured over the long years has been much more difficult than we ever believed it would be. We’ve been working at it for a long time.
Take the problem of housing. For years, people have been working on fair housing. But it seems no matter how long and hard people have worked, somehow, black people seem to wind up living together in poor communities. Now, it’s common to believe that it just works out that way.
But does it? Think about it. There are more white people in America than there are black people. For many years, we lived under separate but equal laws.
Are neighborhoods in America marked black and white? Or is it that whites prefer to live in all-white communities?
In any case, black ghettos abound in America. How does that happen in so many areas where there are no discrimination laws? The question is, how long will it be before these neighborhoods are integrated?
Housing remains a problem in America. Well-paid jobs is another problem. Census figures always bring us the information that black families are way below white families in income.
For many years, most black people have resisted the call for reparations. Most people realized that it was going to take quite some time for all Americans to accept the idea that years of pain and suffering have been visited on blacks.
It can’t go on. At some time Americans must come face to face with the harm that has been done to black people. It is not good that they should not have to pay the price for their harm and neglect.
Black and white together, we should do the right thing.
You can join the conversation with Rose M. Nolen by calling her at 882-5734 or e-mailing her at firstname.lastname@example.org.