The Struggles of the Black Race

Posted by Louis Goggans on Fri, Aug 23, 2013 at 9:17 AM

Photo by Larry Kuzniewski
  • Photo by Larry Kuzniewski

Being a black man in the Southern region of America, a place where slavery and segregation flourished for more than a century, can be quite troublesome at times. I know this firsthand.

I’ve been stereotyped and discriminated against by some of my white peers over the years. For a significant amount of the experiences, I'm still baffled about the reason why. A number of assumptions could be made, but it truly doesn't matter. It's something that I've come to live with, although I haven't accepted it. However, I have accepted that I can't please everybody, nor will I be liked and embraced by everyone.

Before I go any further, I want to clarify that I didn’t write this article to defame any particular ethnic group. I'm simply shedding my thoughts on the black race and what it's like to be part of it.

In America, it's no secret that the black race is viewed as inferior when compared to the white race. At one point and time, the aforementioned claim was supported with blatant acts of racism: blacks severely beaten, shot or lynched for insignificant matters; the inability to vote; and being burdened with separate seating, dining, schooling, and job selection than whites. This changed significantly as the years progressed and segregation was ended. The presence of equality began to appear.

But even in today's time, there's still a sense of inferiority that blacks, and minorities as a whole, face in comparison to their white peers. Although racial prejudice isn't as brazen today as it was decades ago, it's still evident. No longer is this just a black and white issue either.

For blacks, it's refreshing to think our inferiority has diminished over the decades, but with occurrences like the murders of Amadou Diallo, Sean Bell, Trayvon Martin, and Jordan Davis, you can't refrain from worrying about how precious the life of a black person truly is. If you're a young black male, the worry is even greater.

On the contrary, to say I’m completely surprised by the perceptions that people of other races have of blacks would be a lie. From the beliefs that a significant amount of our race is low-class and uneducated to the presumption that we're all freeloaders who depend on support from the government to survive, it doesn’t shock me at all. To read more, click here

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Comments (76)

Showing 1-25 of 76

"In America, it's no secret that the black race is viewed as inferior when compared to the white race. "
"the perceptions that people of other races have of blacks would be a lie. "

--Great job of generalizing and stereotyping others! I get what you're trying to do here but this might be the most ignorant article I've ever read on the Flyer site.

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Posted by JDM on 08/23/2013 at 9:44 AM

@JDM I appreciate your opinion...thanks for taking time out to read the post.

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Posted by Louis Goggans on 08/23/2013 at 10:47 AM

Thanks for lifting up the rug for a minute, Louis. It's amazing how much crap is accumulating there.

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Posted by Scott Banbury on 08/23/2013 at 10:50 AM

All of us are individually responsible for our actions. There is neither collective guilt nor collective responsibility for the actions of others. We are at a time in our country where it has become accepted to label some of us as racists and some as thugs based upon the color of our skin or political beliefs. We have a President who is aggravating the situation by inserting himself into the Trayvon Martin Killing and pretending to know nothing about the Chris Lane murder.
We all experience unwarranted prejudice in our lives it is time we man up and understand that no one will go through life without scars. We have been taught how to deal with hatred we need to execute on that teaching: " “You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect. Mat 5:43-48

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Posted by Gaius Graccius on 08/23/2013 at 11:08 AM

Gaius says "We all experience unwarranted prejudice in our lives".

It seems you are very wordily telling Louis to speak for himself. But then you make that sweeping statement.
I, for one, have never experienced prejudice (when would prejudice be warranted, by the way?). So you should also speak for yourself.

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Posted by nobody on 08/23/2013 at 12:38 PM

A few thoughts:

1. Perceptions about people far more often than not stem from actions and how people behave (or misbehave). If I'm standing in line at a coffee shop and a loud, cursing black female is talking on her phone loud enough for all to hear, I don't want to be around her. Am I racist? No! Turns out I don't like loud, inconsiderate people. Few black people understand or try to see this point and most (like Al Sharpton or Barack Obama) simply see a racist around every corner.

2. When President Obama campaigned on "Yes, We Can", we now see that what he meant was, "Yes, we can change America into something it was never intended to be: a society based on dependence." It essentially says, "No, YOU Can't...not without Us (government assistance)". That is racist on its face, yet black America votes for him at 90+%. Under this President, race relations have only worsened, even though he would never have won, twice, without the large numbers of white votes he received. It seems most of black America ignores all of this, can't understand what's happening or refuses to believe it.

3. As to the murders of young black males, it is other black males doing the real killing. The media obsess on Trayvon Martin without let up for months, yet ignore this hard fact. This, therefore, is not a racial issue but should be an entirely moral issue, unnacceptable to all. To me, it is truly racist to say it's tolerable that black sons and daughters in Frayser kill each other while everyone knows that if serious crime spiked in Germantown, well-armed citizens and plentiful police would put a stop to it.

4. Eric Holder, another bureaucrat like Obama more interested in racial payback than justice, asks when are we going to talk about race. I'd ask when are we going to talk about reality.

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Posted by Niles4334 on 08/23/2013 at 1:32 PM

I took the time to click the link and read the whole post.

It's an interesting take, and I think you do hit something that's very real, and that's the fact that most stereotypes are related in some level of truth to some extent. The only way to truly change those stereotypes is through societal behavioral changes.

The one part I disagree with is the part about the way you dress. Yes, it's true that you can't judge a book by its cover, but it's also true that if you want to be judged a certain way, you should probably dress and carry yourself in a manner that leads people to see you in the way you want to be viewed.

I'm a big Dave Chappelle fan, and in one of his comedy bits, he talks about how he hates it when women dress all slutty and then get mad when you treat them like they're easy. Mimicking the woman, he says "just because I dress this way does NOT make me a whore". He follows that by saying it would be like him, Dave Chappelle the comedian, dressing like a police officer. Then when someone comes running up asking him for help, he says "just because I dress this way does NOT make me a police officer". He tells the women in the audience you may not be a whore, but you're wearing a whore's uniform.

So yes, while you can't judge a book by its cover, you have to realize that everyone is going to stereotype you based on the first impression you give them. If I come up to you with a shaved head and a swastika on my shirt, it doesn't mean I'm a skinhead, but I couldn't exactly get angry at you for thinking I was one.

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Posted by GroveReb84 on 08/23/2013 at 2:59 PM

I am an old man, born in 1940 in St. Louis. I've lived in Memphis for over twenty years now. I've seen a lot of change over the years. In my 20's I was in the Air Force stationed in Biloxi, Ms. I was waiting for the Greyhound bus one day to go to New Orleans and a black man tapped me rather firmly on my back shoulder and when I turned around he firmly said I couldn't wait there. I was surprised and asked why not? He pointed to a sign on the wall that said Colored Waiting area and then I noticed a drinking fountain that said colored and another said white only. I was amazed and moved to the White Waiting area. I felt like I was in a 3rd world country.
Things slowly changed after that, thanks to MLK jr and his supporters from all races. Those changes were hard on everyone. Whites were afraid of black crime coming to their neighborhoods and blacks were afraid of retaliation and resentful of old attitudes. Nothing has changed much about that relationship that I can see. I have been touched a lot by black crime: lost my older brother Jim who was shot by two black men robbing a jewelry store. Our St. Louis neighborhood changed quickly into an unsafe place to live and a mass migration to the suburbs ensued. I am sure the blacks have as many stories to tell.
I have met a lot of black people at work, in the military, at school and as next door neighbors, and there have been many wonderful and a few shifty people....same as my white friends.
I wish this young man well as he searches for a way to live a full life with all Memphians.

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Posted by blockhead on 08/23/2013 at 3:15 PM

Oh goody. Niles came back to spew some more of his tolerance.
He was in such a hurry to spew his tolerance that he apparently did not click the link to read the rest of the article.

By the way, Niles, I agree that not wanting to be around that loud person that you described does not make you a racist. But this statement does make you a racist:
"Few black people understand or try to see this point and most (like Al Sharpton or Barack Obama) simply see a racist around every corner."
See, assuming that you know how the majority of an entire race will act, makes you a racist.
Sorry, I know that it seems like I'm being intolerant by pointing that out to you. But you're so tolerant that I know you will understand.

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Posted by nobody on 08/23/2013 at 3:41 PM

Oh, woe is me .... tears all over my keyboard. I guess you can't be a victim if you don't claim to have been victimized. Whether it be preference for college admission, preference for government contracts or adjustments in testing scores for simply being black the playing field for minorities is more than level. So, as they say, "Get off the cross, we need the wood."

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Posted by CEBorst on 08/24/2013 at 7:59 AM


Lay off the morning mint juleps and read the entire linked post.

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Posted by CL Mullins on 08/24/2013 at 12:39 PM

CL - it's Irish Cream and coffee, thank you. Mint Juleps, not even on Derby Day.

Thanks, I did read the rest of the article. Don't let a few bad apples spoil the barrel, I get it. Seems by what we see in the news lately the few is becoming the many, especially with younger black males ... the stats speak for them selves.

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Posted by CEBorst on 08/24/2013 at 1:23 PM


What stats speak for themselves? What news stories do you see that condemns an entire race? The news stories that I see and read seem to always involve single persons and single incidents.

Now, back to those stats. Starting with 100%, what is the percentage of blacks from the entire black population are criminals, thugs, miscreants, murderers, etc? I know that you can give me the answer, you yourself said the stats show it.

So, CEBorst tell us the percentage or be the bigot like your post suggests.

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Posted by oldtimeplayer on 08/24/2013 at 1:35 PM


Have you read Mr Goggans' entire post?…

Borst may be referring to those stats.

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Posted by CL Mullins on 08/24/2013 at 2:41 PM

"Before I go any further, I want to clarify that I didn’t write this article to defame any particular ethnic group." Then you jump right in on white people. Wonder why the MF even posted it.

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Posted by whiteandproud on 08/24/2013 at 2:46 PM


Don't try to defend the indefensible. CEBorst broadbushed an entire race and the is bigoted. It is just that simple.

I don't think that all white people are mass murders, ala the columbine, the Newtown shooters, etc.

Borst said what he said and didn't qualify it, so, I guess he meant it.

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Posted by oldtimeplayer on 08/24/2013 at 2:56 PM

And Borst.

OTP has something of a point. Sure the news (if it bleeds it leads) is full of crime and black folks and poor folks in general are in far disproportionally represented. BUT the question is should you lump and entire race into one statistical tub? If so is it prudent or is it racist? Toss out simple drug crimes and where do those stats go? Unfortunately the violence stats remain.

Should you, as does Jesse Jackson admittedly, and George Zimmerman factually, assume that a young black man, wearing the gang themed fashions of today, is a threat?

My time in uber liberal San Francsico exposed me to an endemic racism that bounces around between the myriad of races. Perhaps my accent invites people to talk trash about races other than my own, but it is eye opening. And black folks are about as guilty as any group.

We are left with fear and suspicion, rational and irrational, and a thin line separating the two

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Posted by CL Mullins on 08/24/2013 at 3:03 PM


I asked if you had read the entire post. Reading the entire post is not defending Borst. It is an attempt to assure a discussion has a common ground.

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Posted by CL Mullins on 08/24/2013 at 3:07 PM

OTP, these are simply facts Sir:

1 in 11 blacks are either in prison or under some supervision, 1in 45 for whites

blacks make up 13.6 percent of the countries population, yet blacks make up 39.4 percent of the prison population

3% of all blacks males are incarcerated, .05 for white males - blacks are 6 times as likely to have been in jail as whites

blacks commit 52.5 percent of the countries homicides, yet are only 13.6 percent of the population

read more here:…

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Posted by CEBorst on 08/25/2013 at 12:35 PM


Even if I accept those numbers, very few blacks as compared to the entire black population is involved in crime. According to your numbers, only 10 or less than 10% of blacks out of the entire black population is involved criminally. So, why are you branding the entire race?

What if I say that all white people are mass murderers? I could show you stats that indicate that whites commit 99% of all mass murders in the U. S. I don't do that because all white people, the over whelming number of white people are not mass murderers.

Hell, all white people are not racist, not even in the south. When I do say racist, I do not mean the entire race nor just the ones that overtly show it, I am also talking about the ones that sit on the sidelines silently watching it happen. Racism would not exist today if the silent majority stood up against it.

CeBorst, it is your posts that condemn you, not the thoughts of other people.

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Posted by oldtimeplayer on 08/25/2013 at 2:18 PM

He's got you there Borst, and if you want to play with numbers, if you count up the totals of white (collar) crimes, monies stolen and human carnage in its wake, then, I'm sorry OTP, but black criminals just don't measure up.

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Posted by CL Mullins on 08/25/2013 at 4:22 PM


CEborst won't respond. He knows that there are more numbers out there that will blow his mind. Little things like kiddy porn, kidnapping, sexual assaults. I wonder how many Bernie Maddofs out there are black?

But, at least he had me worried for a minute. Hell, I had to gulp down another large shot of Crown Royal until I figured out the percentages he was talking about.

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Posted by oldtimeplayer on 08/25/2013 at 4:35 PM

Hold on there OTP,
The other side of this column does deal with the disproportion of blacks involved in street crime. And this is what scares folks, all folks, more than the Madoffs, even if the comparative stats lean heavily towards white crime.
Not news to you, even in your suburban life. If I recall you have called for more policing in high (street)crime areas.
But here is the convergence. The pyramid of capitalism, needs an ever expanding base of poverty. The black bourgeois complains that they are lumped in with the street n(lets not get started)s.
Too freakin bad. After the civil rights movement severely ebbed after April '68, that bourgeois was bought off and abandoned the power base that could've changed society more. But there were scholarships, seats on corporate boards and the general affirmative action cum trickle down, divisive enticements that American is built on. Well, that and racism. It's in our country's dna. You can't get rid of racism without digging up its class roots.

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Posted by CL Mullins on 08/25/2013 at 6:36 PM

@CL Mullins DING DING, we have a winner! "And that detective, is the right answer."

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Posted by jrgolden on 08/25/2013 at 7:51 PM


They are still being paid today, our worst enemies. Like those fat, bought ones say, hell, if no-one was poor, who would fight the wars and do the dirty work.

Amen to your post.

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Posted by oldtimeplayer on 08/25/2013 at 10:24 PM
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