The Symptoms


There is a greater concentration of Black Americans at the bottom of the economic ladder than other groups. Historically this has been the case throughout American history. (Asian Americans have higher incomes per capita than any other group.)


There are greater concentrations of incarcerated Black Americans or are being under the supervision of the criminal justice system, for example on parole, awaiting trial, etc. The most likely murder victim is a Black American male. The most like murderer is a Black American male. A deep mistrust in police has developed among them. This is not unlike the conditions in the South during Jim Crow. It is common for demonstrations and riots to break out even when the police are not in the wrong.

Seventy percent of Black American children are born out of wedlock. A high percentage of them will grow up being raised by a single mother or grandmother.

Blacks are disproportionally on social assistance such as living in public supported housing, receiving food stamps, and so on.


Blacks experience higher rates of unemployment than other groups and work in lower paying jobs than others.

There are greater concentrations of Black Americans regarding low educational achievement. It is typical for a Black child to be delivered to the school house door at five years of age unprepared to benefit from an education.

Many Black Americans are angry because of these negative conditions. In some ways their anger is justified. Since the mid-1960’s government has promised and continues to promise equality of achievement in employment, education, social acceptance. This involves unfulfilled promises of being able to live the “American dream” and having a better life than before. But in many regards their lives are worse.

Our goal in additional sections is to identify the fundamental causes of these conditions and recommend actions for overcoming them.

© Joseph L. Bass, EdD and Barbara P. Starkey-Bass August 2018