The Phony Leaders, Dead-End Movements, and Culture of Failure That Are Undermining Black America--and What We Can Do Abo
By Juan Williams
Crown, Hardcover, 9780307338235, 256pp.
Publication Date: August 1, 2006
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Half a century after brave Americans took to the streets to raise the bar of opportunity for all races, Juan Williams writes that too many black Americans are in crisis—caught in a twisted hip-hop culture, dropping out of school, ending up in jail, having babies when they are not ready to be parents, and falling to the bottom in twenty-first-century global economic competition.
In Enough, Juan Williams issues a lucid, impassioned clarion call to do the right thing now, before we travel so far off the glorious path set by generations of civil rights heroes that there can be no more reaching back to offer a hand and rescue those being left behind.
Inspired by Bill Cosby’s now famous speech at the NAACP gala celebrating the fiftieth anniversary of the Brown decision integrating schools, Williams makes the case that while there is still racism, it is way past time for black Americans to open their eyes to the “culture of failure” that exists within their community. He raises the banner of proud black traditional values—self-help, strong families, and belief in God—that sustained black people through generations of oppression and flowered in the exhilarating promise of the modern civil rights movement. Williams asks what happened to keeping our eyes on the prize by proving the case for equality with black excellence and achievement.
He takes particular aim at prominent black leaders—from Al Sharpton to Jesse Jackson to Marion Barry. Williams exposes the call for reparations as an act of futility, a detour into self-pity; he condemns the “Stop Snitching” campaign as nothing more than a surrender to criminals; and he decries the glorification of materialism, misogyny, and murder as a corruption of a rich black culture, a tragic turn into pornographic excess that is hurting young black minds, especially among the poor.
Reinforcing his incisive observations with solid research and alarming statistical data, Williams offers a concrete plan for overcoming the obstacles that now stand in the way of African Americans’ full participation in the nation’s freedom and prosperity. Certain to be widely discussed and vehemently debated, Enough is a bold, perceptive, solution-based look at African American life, culture, and politics today.
Juan Williams is a senior correspondent for NPR®. He is also a political analyst for the Fox News Channel and a panelist on Fox News Sunday. He is the author of Thurgood Marshall: American Revolutionary and Eyes on the Prize: America's Civil Rights Years, 1954-1965, among other books. During his twenty-one year career at The Washington Post, Williams served as an editorial writer, op-ed columnist, and White House correspondent. He lives in Washington, D.C.
Advance Praise for Enough
“Written in the tradition of DuBois and King, Enough is an impressively powerful and courageous book. Williams delivers a blunt and bracing challenge to black America.” —David J. Garrow, author of the Pulitzer Prize–winning Bearing the Cross and Senior Fellow at Cambridge University
“A courageous and much-needed primer on race relations in America today.” —Thomas Sowell, author of Black Rednecks and White Liberals and Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution
“Enough is a breath of fresh air and a long overdue, critical insight into today’s stereotypical nonsense that has unfortunately been passing as the new black culture.” —Donna Brazile, political commentator for CNN and former campaign manager for Al Gore in 2000
“Juan Williams has, through Bill Cosby, spoken for the quiet majority of African Americans who desperately look for some voice to articulate what they know is truth. . . . I highly recommend Enough to those who are really interested in knowing our nation’s history, and specifically the odyssey of African Americans in this country.” —Douglas Wilder, mayor of Richmond, Virginia, and former governor of Virginia
“Juan Williams isn’t afraid to give Cosby his props, showing us that a lot of what people call black conservatism is plain common sense.” —John McWhorter, author of Winning the Race: Beyond the Crisis in Black America