THE MUSEUM OF SLAVERY?

I say, "blacks should focus on whatever increases black self-respect and pride. That is the answer." He--old friend, old comrade--leans across the table, voice angry, eyes flame throwing. I should not have said "should."

"Listen," he starts, meaning, Listen, Whitey. "After everything that has happened, no white man has the right to tell blacks what they should be doing--about anything!"

I have a temper too. I stifle an impulse to fire back what W.C. Fields called "an evasive answer." Instead I pause and let the adrenaline subside; I roll my eyes to the ceiling and raise my open palms, priestlike: Peace.

...

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