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Don’t Blame Discrimination

I really loved this quote from Walter E. Williams in his review of Thomas Sowell’s new book Discrimination and Disparities regarding the myths Sowell busts:

“One of those myths is that but for the fact of discrimination, we’d all be proportionately represented in socio-economic characteristics, such as career, income, education and incarceration. The fact of business is that there is no evidence anywhere on earth, at any time in human history, that demonstrates that but for discrimination, there would be proportionate representation in anything by race, sex, nationality or any other human characteristic. Sowell shows that socio-economic outcomes differ vastly among individuals, groups and nations in ways that cannot be explained by any one factor, whether it’s genetics, discrimination or some kind of exploitation.”

Walter Williams is a PhD and teaches economics at George Mason University. He is also one of the rare black conservatives with a wide audience. He is on the money here. People are never going to be completely equal, for a whole bunch of reasons. Blaming everything on discrimination is not only a lie, it is a lie that traps people in a sense of inferiority and helplessness. Discrimination, especially in past eras, is one factor. So is genetics. So is culture and of course personal choices. So are a lot of other factors. Telling people that they are helpless and incapable of improving their lot in life is the worst sort of actual racism. It is something I am going to be writing a lot about in this space because I think it is one of the most pernicious and crippling lies that is also widely accepted in our society and the source of a great deal of the social ills of America.

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