Nation: Minority Report

Vernon Jordan, head of the National Urban League, regularly uses the President's State of the Union message as an occasion to offer his own report on the state of black America. Last week's installment, like its predecessors, was grim. Describing blacks as "boat people without boats," Jordan said that their average wages had shrunk from 61% of white wages in 1969 to 59% in 1978. And despite the reports of a growing black middle class, the number of blacks in that category remained stationary at about 25% throughout the 1970s; so did the larger number of black poor at 28%.

Not only...

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