Well Double half I must take issue with a couple of things that you say/imply. I for one am a great backer of equality and fully support all people being treated fairly and equally before the law. I believe that those beliefs are shared with the vast majority of Americans of all ethnic backgrounds. So I guess the disagreement I may have with you is where does this country that I love and admire so much stand today as far as approaching that lofty goal. Beyond that how do we advance the USA towards that positive progress that you say you want and seem to have decided that the rest of us "people who need to get over ourselves" are against.
First as to where the USA stands today - I am not sure how old you are DH but I will soon be 64 and like to think that I have a pretty solid understanding of history. The USA (like all societies since the beginning of human civilization) has a long history of racial conflict and racism. The African Americans along with the Native Americans have received the worst of that treatment over the years. The US ended slavery in 1865 and after a brief time when equal rights started to emerge in the South there was a massive backlash fueled by white racism and the Jim Crow were instituted in the South. In the rest of the country there wasn't the legal structure set up to enforce the separate and unequal treatment of whites and blacks but there was plenty of racism and discrimination that was widely accepted. The same types of racist attitudes largely existed throughout all of the other countries of the world also.
So what is racism? More than anything else it is an attitude held by people that they are inherently better than another group of people due to perceived superficial differences in looks. In point of fact there is one human race and the so called differences are rather arbitrary and cosmetic. Still I believe it would be impossible for any fair minded person to deny that within the a large percentage white population of this country there was an attitude that somehow blacks were somehow inferior to whites. I do wish that we somehow have a graph of how those racist attitudes changes over the years in this country. I believe it would show a very steady decrease (yes it lagged in the South) especially after WW2. The desegregation of the military by Truman and the desegregation of sports in both the pro leagues and the colleges were both symptoms and drivers of that change in attitudes. When the 1960s arrived and the civil rights movement hit America faced a major test and I believe the majority of white Americans (probably not a majority in the South) decided that we should honor the values expressed in of Declaration of Independence and codified in our Constitution. I was to young to remember when Dr. King gave his I have a Dream speech in 1963. I think it affected and convinced a lot of people then and I know it has had an affect on me over the years. The laws of this land were changed then and have continued to evolve to a point that on the books discrimination is a clear violation of the laws of this land. As white and black people spent more time in each others company in school, work, and other areas of life a more important change took place. I have seen the change in attitudes across generations. If racism exists in the hearts and minds of people then the level of improvement in this country over the last century is amazing. My parents generation were less racist than my grandparents and my generation less than them. The kids coming up today abhor the very thought of racism. I may just be naive of plain stupid but I just don't believe that there are that many white people left in this country that believe that white people are somehow better or superior in any way to their black brothers and sisters. I think the vast majority of all Americans want to see all people treated with full equality and receive full and equal treatment before the law.
So if I am right about racism being a thing of the past with the vast majority of white people, why are we where we are today. How do you explain the issues highlight in your second paragraph (poverty, incarceration rates, police brutality etc)? Well those are very complicated issues and I am sure no one wants to hear me running off at the mouth any more.
So I am going to cut to the chase and ask where do we go from here? There are millions of African American kids in this country growing up right now and what should they be hearing from the adults of this country. What should they be hearing from the millions of African Americans who have found their way to great success here? Should they tell them they can't succeed due to horrible systemic racism and institutional racism that exists in this awful country? Or do we tell them that their success depends on their own actions, is in their own hands. This starts with education, and is rooted in work ethic. I think all of the successful African Americans and people from every ethnic background can deliver this message. I firmly believe that the route to the American Dream is open to everyone in this country and depends on making good choices and avoiding bad choices in life. By all means let's be there to coach them and guide them. I have been coaching wrestlers for years and have never told any of them that the refs suck and to go out and complain to them. I have told them to work hard at building their strength skill, and stamina. I have preached to them to worry about what they can control and not to be distracted by things they can't.
Well DH I do apologize for rambling on so much and I won't blame you if you don't bother to read it. This stuff does bother me and I sincerely hope that this country can come together and do the right things especially for the kids of this country. The best to you and I hope we can get back to wrestling soon.