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One Man's Experience Strikes Familiar Chord

February 11, 1990

To be sure, Bruce Bean's "To Be Young, Black and Endangered" touches a sensitive public nerve. Granted, the condition exists. More positively, what do we do about it? If blame is to be assigned, we all must confess a share.

Often, I have declared that if I had been born black, I would have been the most obnoxious of the racial protagonists. Now, it would seem, the worst course would be to finger blame.

The biggest hurdle to overcome is the universal human inclination to stereotype. . . . To cancel out the effects of aggregate or stereotypical impressions, we have to focus on positive racial intercourse and experience. This requires that blacks soft-pedal blaming their fate on the accident of their birth--which they have every right to do, but, that's a given, not subject to change. Too, they must brush off misguided whites who exhort them to a course of confrontation and violence. One course might be to resist a tendency to regard every affront or restraint as racially motivated.

I hope Bruce Bean realizes that the vocation he's chosen, the printed word, is the strongest weapon yet known to address inequity.

BILL KUBICK, Oceanside

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