How Black Pride produces Black Poverty – part 3
Some of my fellow blacks have argued against my proposal by pointing out blacks who have had some tremendous achievements or who have always practiced these positive habits practiced by other successful groups.
But I am not arguing, like a racist white supremacist, that there are no blacks who are great, intellectually or economically. The very fact that some blacks have practiced good cultural habits and succeeded well in their intellectual or business ventures is proof that such cultures are not the genetic property of certain ethnic groups. A black man can be disciplined even when he lives amidst a culture of general indiscipline, in short.
But this does not change the fact that the culture of his group is still backward. It means that a child who grows up in that community is more likely to grow up undisciplined than disciplined due to the general influence of those around him: his (absentee) father, his (jailed) uncles, the neighbor who boasts about gang rape, drugs, etc. Whether we like it or not, groups of people do have certain cultural habits that they promote, certain things that they value or disvalue. Some are fortunate enough to have parents who abandoned such a culture, sometimes by physically moving to an area where the reach of such influence is largely dissipated. But sometimes their children can still be influenced through the omnipresent reach of the media, unless they take some very deliberate steps to train them in another culture they observe from other people.
I remember a line in one of Tupac’s songs: “I come from a family tree of killers, thugs and drug dealers…” the legendary artist boasted. Using a talent that is definitely superior among blacks (music), many black artists have expressed a very negative culture from their communities that does not lead to true achievement. Economic measures might exclude such drug dealers and thieves from the brackets of the poor because of what they stole or because of a bestselling song they made about it, but in actual fact they are still poor because that’s not a sustainable way to live as a human being. Real success has to come from cultivating real virtues that will enable you to succeed anywhere and at any time, like the ability to always improve your education, for example. And an ability to always work hard, no matter what job it is or whether or not someone is watching over you. And of course the ability to always keep time, and so on.
One of the best brain surgeons in the world is a black doctor named Ben Carson. When my country (Zambia) had a very complicated case of Siamese twins born with joint heads who needed to be separated, they had to fly in the best surgeons in the world to do this. The operation was led by the famous Ben Carson.
But Dr. Carson’s life story only underscores my point about culture. He was going to a predominantly white school but he was the worst student in his class. He was coming from a community that did not value such discipline as the one demanded by school. His neighbors were only boasting about gang membership (at worst), or basketball skills (at best). And he came from a typical young single mother headed home in his community.
And then his mother just suddenly decided that she had had enough of this culture and resolved to save her children from their inevitable tragic future. She forced Ben Carson and his brother to start spending many hours a day just reading, even though she didn’t have any education herself. She didn’t care if they were accused of “acting white.” Learning from (or copying) more successful communities or nations does not mean you are trying to become them, it means you are trying to have what they have. If you want the results they have, you also need the same cause: the habits they culturally value.
From having the lowest IQ, Ben Carson soon became the best student in this predominantly white school and went on to become one of the best brain surgeons in the world (contrary to what some experts say, any normal person can raise his own IQ very significantly). He was also the youngest to hold his prestigious position at John Hopkins hospital.
His life confirms my theory that those who make the biggest cultural leap tend to become superior in ability due to that extra effort they have to make, especially when this even requires going against the trends in your own community. But the best is for the community itself to change its culture, as other groups have done in the past, by abandoning this strange postmodern concept of having pride for nothing.