Integration or Separation? A Strategy for Racial Equality

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Harvard University Press, Jun 30, 2009 - Law - 360 pages
Integrated in principle, segregated in fact: is this the legacy of fifty years of progress in American racial policy? Is there hope for much better? Roy L. Brooks, a distinguished professor of law and a writer on matters of race and civil rights, says with frank clarity what few will admit--integration hasn't worked and possibly never will. Equally, he casts doubt on the solution that many African-Americans and mainstream whites have advocated: total separation of the races. This book presents Brooks's strategy for a middle way between the increasingly unworkable extremes of integration and separation. Limited separation, the approach Brooks proposes, shifts the focus of civil rights policy from the group to the individual. Defined as cultural and economic integration within African-American society, this policy would promote separate schooling, housing, and business enterprises where needed to bolster the self-sufficiency of the community, without trammeling the racial interests of individuals inside or outside of the group, and without endangering the idea of a shared Americanness. But all the while Brooks envisions African-American public schools, businesses, and communities redesigned to serve the enlightened self-interest of the individual. Unwilling to give up entirely on racial integration, he argues that limited separation may indeed lead to improved race relations and, ultimately, to healthy integration. This book appears at a crucial time, as Republicans dismantle past civil rights policies and Democrats search for new ones. With its alternative strategy and useful policy ideas for bringing individual African-Americans into mainstream society as first-class citizens, Integration or Separation? should influence debate and policymaking across the spectra of race, class, and political persuasion.
 

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Why this book was (is) not a source of discussion within the Black Nationalist circles is beyond comprehension. Perhaps the thought of 'limited separation' closes the door to any objective rationalization of a middle ground between racial inclusion and exclusion. The line may be too thin to tread.
If such is the case, then an opportunity is missed by avoiding this breakthrough thinking and research done by Roy Brooks who does a noteworthy job of documenting the 'I lead-you follow' relationship between Blacks and whites. He lays out the struggles African Americans have made in order to obtain keys to open doors, believing a prize on the other side, only to have bricks (in the form of de facto and de jure laws) fall on our heads.
Roy L. Brooks should be given an honorary 'dashiki' for attempting to produce and atmosphere for creative debate. Between you and I...I think he is a wavering African nationalist who needs a slight tilt towards our side.
Separation Now!
 

Contents

RACIAL INTEGRATION
1
Elementary and Secondary Education
5
Higher Education
33
Housing
47
Employment
69
Voting
84
Why Integration Has Failed
104
TOTAL SEPARATION
117
IntraRacial Conflicts and Racial Romanticism
185
LIMITED SEPARATION
189
The Case for a Policy of Limited Separation
199
Elementary and Secondary Education
214
Higher Education
235
Cultural Integration within the Community
244
Economic Integration within the Community
258
Political Power
276

Booker T Washington and W E B Du Bois
125
Marcus Garvey
132
The Nation of Islam
143
Emigration to Liberia
156
Black Towns in the United States
168
Epilogue
282
Notes
289
Index
339
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Page 8 - We consider the underlying fallacy of the plaintiff's argument to consist in the assumption that the enforced separation of the two races stamps the colored race with a badge of inferiority. If this be so, it is not by reason of anything found in the act, but solely because the colored race chooses to put that construction upon it.

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