I recently traveled to New York. On the plane, I met an actress named Lenora. During the long flight, I learned that a) she's Jewish, b) she works as an actress, and c) was doing a play in the hyper-liberal city of Santa Monica, Calif. Not exactly, I thought, a Reagan Republican.
She asked about my business in New York, and I told her I intended to do a series of TV shows to promote my new book.
"What is the title?" she asked.
Because so many recoil at the title -- finding it offensive -- I decided to talk about the book first. It argues that the civil rights war is over, and the good guys won; that white racism no longer remains a serious problem in America; and that so-called civil rights leaders and their sympathizers -- the media and the Democratic Party -- either believe or want Americans (especially blacks) to believe that race and racism remain a major problem.
"Why," Lenora asked, "if it is no longer a big issue, does the Democratic Party say or believe otherwise?"
"In the case of the Democratic Party," I said, "they cannot win at the presidential level without the 90 to 95 percent monolithic black vote. That is why someone like Democratic Congressman Barney Frank referred to Hurricane Katrina as 'ethnic cleansing by inaction.' He argued -- I kid you not -- that Bush intentionally responded slowly to Katrina so that it would displace blacks from the state, turning Louisiana into more of a red, or pro-Republican, state. This is why," I continued, "Al Gore's former campaign manager, Donna Brazile, referred to the Republican Party as possessing a 'white-boy attitude.'"
When I finished the summary of the book, I said, now here's its title: "Stupid Black Men: How to Play the Race Card -- and Lose."
She paused, and said, "Fantastic title."
Lenora then told me about her play, "Black and Bluestein." It, too, concerns race relations. It's the playwright's (Jerry Mayer, "Bluestein" in the play) autobiographical account of what happened in St. Louis in 1963. Mayer and his father built a housing development. Mayer intended to sell his own house, and move into a new development that he and his father were building only a couple of blocks away. But uh-oh, a black man, Dr. Daniel Black, wanted to buy Mayer's house for him and his family.
What to do?
The other residents in the development (Lenora May, the actress I met on the plane, played a bigoted neighbor) held a vote, and 70 percent wanted Bluestein to refuse to sell to the black family. Furthermore, selling to a black family would threaten the success of Bluestein's new development as the word spread that a black family moved in only a couple of blocks away. How will this change the neighborhood? And what about the threat to property values?