A New Civil Right

The 40th anniversary of brown v. board of education on May 17 unleashed a torrent of earnest commentary on the nation's op-ed pages. Story after story deplored America's lack of racial progress since the U.S. Supreme Court struck down segregation with that landmark decision. Somehow all the hand-wringing analysis overlooked a small but telling example of how far some blacks have come during the past four decades: the case of Joseph Jett.

Jett is a 36-year-old Harvard Business School graduate who has been accused of bilking the Wall Street firm of Kidder, Peabody by concocting untold millions in "phantom trades" during...

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