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Reply to "George F. Will just doesn't get it, but then ..."

Okay, let me see ... Activists (e.g., Berry) on an commission that by definition is an activist commission are extremists; but conservatives on an activist commission, on the stated mission of reigning in the Commission represents a bracing change?

Would some please suggest to Will that his bias, like his slip, is showing.

Will asserts that Berry made unsubstantiated charges of vast "disenfranchisement" of Florida voters in 2000. First, it is the job of the Chair of the Commission on Civil Right to raise such issues. It is then the job of congress (via the Justice Dept.) to investigate the claims. The charges raised by Berry were unsubstantiated only because congress refused to investigate.

Reynolds says the core function of civil-rights laws is to prevent discrimination, meaning "the distribution of benefits and burdens on the basis of race." He rightly says the core function of the civil-rights laws, which required "a lot of heavy lifting by the federal government," was to dismantle a caste system maintained by law. But that has been accomplished.

No it hasn't. We, i.e., Black People, still face systemic racial discrimination in employment, housing, insurance, educational funding, etc. He must not be reading the Commission's own reports, that cite to a lessening, but not dismantling of these impediments.

It is, as Reynolds says, scandalous that so few black 17-year-old males read at grade level; that so many black teenagers are not mentored to think about college as a possibility; that many young blacks are enveloped in the culture that appalls Bill Cosby, a culture that disparages academic seriousness as "acting white" and celebrates destructive behaviors. Reynolds is right that much of this can be traced far back to discriminatory events or contexts.

What does this have to do with the whether or not we should retire the Commission? While the Commission might report on the abysmal reading levels of inner-city youth of color, it does so in the context of remedying the disparate funding levels.

Civil-rights laws and enforcement agencies are barely relevant. Proper pulpits - perhaps including barbershops - are relevant. Government pulpits are not

I'll agree here, Civil Rights laws and enforcement agencies are barely relevant ... if you are a white man. That is until, you lose your job at the age of 50, because "Well, sure you met your numbers last quarter; but face it, you just can't keep up with these young guns." Or, until you need the protections offered through the ADA.

Did I mention, in the real world, approximate 70% of all EEOC claims are filed by white folk; but 60% of the findings of discrimination are issued in favor of Black claimants?