Our city, Lansing, MI, needs to be talking about William Raspberry"s column about the current condition of the black family. We have an election coming up for mayor and city council and candidates are tip-toeing around this issue like Tiny Tim tip-toed through the tulips.
Raspberry in his column talks about the high number of black kids born to moms who never marry the dad and he talks about how this lack of marriage is decimating black families. It's worth reading and it's important for our candidates to talk about.
How will people react to what he has to say? Is he just an Uncle Tom who has sold out the African American culture or does he have a point?
Our city's race relations are strained on the best of days. People and institutions, including our newspaper, the Lansing State Journal, doesn't want to talk about it. I feel it's time to change that. Lansing residents need to get this issue on the table and they need to start dealing with it.
Candidates for local office feel that they can cheerlead for our city schools and solve the problem. It's going to take more.
It's easier to ignore this and as a white person, it is easier to shut-up and move out to the suburbs.
Now having kids out-of-wedlock is not the sole domain of one race. The whole issue of marriage, fatherhood, kids and the like needs to be talked about in a serious way.
Politicians seem to feel, at least the liberal ones, that more programs will solve this. Hmm...it hasn't so far.