Black Rednecks and White Liberals: Some Thoughts

Dear T,

In Thomas Sowell's never-discussed but ought-to-be-read book, Black Rednecks and White Liberals, he notes that redneck culture, so far from being an American thing, is actually north English.  Even the name.  He says that hundreds of years ago, transportation was so bad and commerce so underdeveloped that many people across the Isles were almost totally isolated: they spoke English but couldn't understand each other, and cultures developed so differently that they ended up many times being incompatible.  

The inimitable Tom Sowell
He lists among these northern English "redneck" characteristics the loud and flamboyant style of oratory and preaching, a general aversion to education and work, a taste for gaudy over-priced clothing instead of savings, sexual promiscuity and the bastardy that goes with it, and flimsy egos that resulted in fistfights and dueling.  We took so many of these animals that the British social reformers were able to extirpate redneck culture in north England for the most part; and our puritanical New Englanders, who were from both superior regions and stock, were left here complaining about rednecks in their letters.  It's safe to say they still complain about them.  When the Great Migration happened in the early 1900's, and large portions of the South flooded into Northern cities like Chicago, polls show clearly that poor Southern whites were even less popular than blacks.  

Sowell posits that slavery did damage to American blacks, but nothing nearly as bad as what redneck culture did -- and continues to do.  He notes first of all that African immigrants from the West Indies, who arrived dirt poor and had also been freed recently, left most Southern blacks in the dust economically.  But secondly he notes that the New Englanders, during Reconstruction, sent thousands of missionaries to found black schools and change the Southern culture.  It was hard work and many of them burned out and quit.  But out of these New Englander schools, where puritanical ideals such as self-control, hard work, saving, chastity, and the value of an education were held in high regard, came W.E.B. Dubois, Langston Hughes, Thurgood Marshall, Walter White, Mary Mcleod Bethune, A. Philip Randolph, and Martin Luther King Jr.  Out of a single elite New Englander institution, Dunbar High School, came many others -- including our first black general, our first black graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, our first black woman to get a PhD, our first black federal judge, and our first black cabinet member.  Many who thought blacks were biologically inferior were forced to recant -- not because anybody told them to, but because their own eyes did.  

Black Rednecks and White Liberals is a gem every God-fearing conservative ought to read, as it puts culture above race, and man's character above his birthright. 

P.S. It's been my policy for years now to buy any book I couldn't live without.  I'd always believed there would be a collapse in the supply chain, or a cyber attack that shuts down the internet, or power outages, or maybe a full-scale catastrophe.  What I didn't expect to see anytime soon was honest books disappearing because they were "too offensive."  

Tom Sowell's Black Rednecks and White Liberals is currently "under review" by Amazon.  Not for quality concerns, or other legitimate issues, but broadly and mysteriously just "under review," despite the fact that Thomas Sowell is a well-known Stanford intellectual, and the book is well-edited, and has been in print for around ten years.  The library has thus lost the Kindle version too, and if I hadn't bought the paperback, I wouldn't have a copy.  I'm not advertising for Thomas Sowell, but if I were you I'd pick up the paperback before it's gone -- as many of the best and most honest books I suspect will be in a few years.

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