Born in Philadelphia in 1936, Walter E. Williams holds a bachelor's degree in economics from California State University (1965) and a master's degree (1967) and doctorate (1972) in economics from the University of California at Los Angeles.
In 1980, he joined the faculty of George Mason University in Fairfax, Va., and is currently the John M. Olin Distinguished Professor of Economics. He has also served on the faculties of Los Angeles City College (1967-69), California State University (1967-1971) and Temple University (1973-1980). From 1963 to 1967, he was a group supervisor of juvenile delinquents for the Los Angeles County Probation Department.
More than 50 of his publications have appeared in scholarly journals such as Economic Inquiry, American Economic Review and Social Science Quarterly and popular publications such as Reader's Digest, The Wall Street Journal and Newsweek. He has made many TV and radio appearances on such programs as Milton Friedman's "Free to Choose," William F. Buckley's "Firing Line," "Face The Nation," "Nightline" and "Crossfire."
He is also the author of 'Race and Economics: How Much Can Be Blamed on Discrimination?' and 'Up from the Projects: An Autobiography.'
In 1981, he began writing his weekly column called "A Minority View" for Heritage Features Syndicate. And in 1991, he joined Creators Syndicate as part of its friendly takeover of Heritage Features.
Williams sits on many advisory boards, including the Review Board of Economics Studies for the National Science Foundation, the Research Foundation, the National Tax Limitation Committee, the Taxpayer's Foundation and the Hoover Institution.
The awards and honors Williams have received are many. These include the National Fellow at the Hoover Institute of War, Revolution, and Peace; the Ford Foundation Dissertation Fellowship; the National Service Award from the Institute for Socioeconomic Studies; and the George Washington Medal of Honor from the Valley Forge Freedom Foundation. In 1984-1985, he received the Faculty Member of the Year Award from the George Mason University Alumni. He is also a member of the American Economic Association, the Mont Pelerin Society and is a Distinguished Scholar of the Heritage Foundation.
Williams participates in many debates and conferences, is a frequent public speaker and often gives testimony before both houses of Congress.
Recent events at the University of Missouri, Yale University and some other colleges demonstrate an ongoing ignorance and/or contempt for the principles of free speech. So let's examine some of those principles by asking: What is the true test of one's commitment to free speech?
The 2015 National Assessment of Educational Progress report, also known as The Nation's Report Card, shows that U.S. educational achievement, to put it nicely, leaves much to be desired.
Many of my columns speak highly of the wisdom of our nation's founders.
Voter ID laws have been challenged because liberal Democrats deem them racist. I guess that's because they see blacks as being incapable of acquiring some kind of government-issued identification.
Hillary Clinton told a mixed audience, "I mean, if we're honest, for a lot of well-meaning, open-minded white people, the sight of a young black man in a hoodie still evokes a twinge of fear."
Here's my question to you: If an evil person is guaranteed that he can inflict physical pain upon others and guaranteed to never suffer pain himself, what happens to his willingness to inflict pain? You say, "What do you mean, Williams?"
Dr. Thomas Sowell, my colleague and friend, told me several years ago that he wasn't going to write any more books, but that was two books ago, and now he has just published his 45th.
I receive loads of mail in response to my weekly nationally syndicated column. Some recent mail has been quite disturbing.
War is nasty, brutal and costly. In our latest wars, many of the casualties suffered by American troops are a direct result of their having to obey rules of engagement created by politicians who have never set foot on -- or even seen -- a battlefield.
Many people argue that liberals, socialists and progressives do not understand basic economics. I am not totally convinced about that.
As the new school year begins, you might like to be updated on some school happenings that will no doubt be repeated this academic year. After this update, I have some questions one might ask the black leadership.
Academics and public intellectuals, who should know better, attempt to explain the highly visible and publicized pathology witnessed in cities such as Baltimore, Detroit, Chicago, Ferguson and others as a legacy of slavery. The argument is made that the problems encountered by many black Americans are rooted in white racism, greed and income inequality. They are able to get away with these untruths because most people believe that what is seen today has always been. A bit of history would belie such a vision.
Many public primary and secondary schools are dangerous places. The Justice Department's Bureau of Justice Statistics and the Department of Education's National Center for Education Statistics show that in 2012, there were about 749,200 violent assaults on students.
Here's my taxi question. If a person is law-abiding, has a driver's license, has a car or van that has passed safety inspection, and has adequate liability insurance, is there any consumer-oriented reason he should not be able to become a taxicab owner/operator?
Last week's column highlighted college campus absurdities and the ongoing attack on free speech and plain common sense. As parents gear up to fork over $20,000 to $60,000 for college tuition, they might benefit from knowing what greets their youngsters. Deceitful college officials, who visit high schools to recruit students and talk to parents, conceal the worst of their campus practices. Let's expose some of it.
George Orwell said, "There are some ideas so absurd that only an intellectual could believe them." If one wants to discover the truth of Orwell's statement, he need only step upon most college campuses.
A particular act or policy might not have a discriminatory intent, but that doesn't let you off the hook. If it has a disproportionately negative impact on so-called protected classes, it is said to have a disparate impact and risks being prohibited by law.
There have been several notable cases of racial fakery. Years ago, then-law professor Elizabeth "Fauxcahontas" Warren falsely claimed that her great-grandfather was Cherokee Indian. A diversity-starved Harvard University jumped at the opportunity to hire her. She was so good at the racial fakery that a 1997 Fordham Law Review article lauded now-Sen. Warren as Harvard Law School's "first woman of color."
We call the war of 1861 the Civil War. But is that right? A civil war is a struggle between two or more entities trying to take over the central government. Confederate President Jefferson Davis no more sought to take over Washington, D.C., than George Washington sought to take over London in 1776.
The victors of war write its history in order to cast themselves in the most favorable light. That explains the considerable historical ignorance about our war of 1861 and panic over the Confederate flag.