Larry Elder
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Dear Ebony,

I do not have high hopes, given the way Ebony treats black non-liberals, that you will review my new book, "Dear Father, Dear Son: Two Lives, Eight Hours." It is, in the end, about the importance of fathers -- and the damage done to a child who grows up without one.

Why do I know you will ignore my book despite its examination of the most important issue facing "black America"? Your magazine treats black conservatives as if they were the enemy, that they bring nothing valid to the discussion.

Ebony magazine, a monthly staple of American black life since 1945, publishes an annual list of the 100-plus (now 150) "Most Influential Blacks in America." Why not rename it the "Most Influential Liberal Blacks in America"?

Each year, Ebony leaves out conservative, heavyweight black intellectuals like Walter Williams, a distinguished professor of economics and former department chairman at George Mason University. In addition to his 10 books on economics and race relations, Williams writes a popular weekly syndicated column carried in about 200 papers. If another black person ran the econ department at any other major, non-historically-black college or university, I don't know whom that would be! Yet you ignore Williams -- because you think his politics hurt black people.

What if they don't?

Williams, for example, is a leading critic of the minimum wage, a policy that he and many economists argue increases unemployment. The late Milton Friedman, a Nobel Prize economics winner,called minimum wage law "one of the most, if not the most, anti-black law on the statute books." Even if Ebony disagrees, 90 percent of all economists believe minimum wage laws increase unemployment among those with lower skills -- the very people the laws purport to help.

At 14 percent black unemployment, versus 7.8 percent nationwide and 6.9 percent for whites, Williams calls this an outrage and blames left-wing policies. Even Rep. Emanuel Cleaver, D-Mo., the head of the Congressional Black Caucus, admitted: "As the chair of the Black Caucus, I've got to tell you, we are always hesitant to criticize the President. With 14 percent (black) unemployment, if we had a white president, we'd be marching around the White House. ... The President knows we are going to act in deference to him in a way we wouldn't to someone white."

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Larry Elder

Larry Elder is a best-selling author and radio talk-show host. To find out more about Larry Elder, or become an "Elderado," visit www.LarryElder.com.