Some groups in the US would want the issue to be "Are blacks less intelligent?" but we can't really discern whether that's true or not due to the complicating issues I wrote about. However, straightforward acceptance of the question overlooks a huge issue. The question is insulting. Yet I barely touched on the ethics of singling out a group for that sort of question. I argued it like a factual question, but in reality, it's a whole different kind of question.
So I've reneged on both my moral duty and my usual goal to talk about solutions. I think I forgot to drill down and look at the deep meaning of the question, not just the superficial meaning. And the deep meaning is best illuminated by the history of assertions that one group of humans is inferior to another group.
I wonder whether this question is too big for me to grapple with. I worked hard, yet I lost my bearings. I'm somewhat surprised by this. Talking about budget deficits--that's within my capabilities and comfort zone; talking about race--as hard as I try, I'm dissatisfied with my thoughts and with what I write. But I still care immensely. Please accept my explanation for this failure, though I can't promise it won't happen again.
Dog at the foot of the penitent
Photo credit: penick.net