A former political columnist for The New York Times
and the author of more than a dozen books, including A Time to Die: The Attica Prison Revolt
and One of Us: Richard Nixon and the American Dream
, Wicker believes that the problems of the urban ghetto are the result of the failure of the American political system to provide opportunity and jobs for disadvantaged youth. His solution begins with blacks abandoning the Democrats once and for all and instead working to create a new liberal political party "truly committed, not just paying lip service, to economic opportunity and social justice for all."
From Publishers Weekly
This book, misleadingly titled, is less a study of efforts at integration than a lament-plus-prescription concerning America's racial wounds. Former New York Times columnist Wicker, a white Southern liberal, now joins a significant segment of African Americans who believe they need economic empowerment as well as political power. Thus, he proposes that blacks ditch the Democratic Party to form a new party "dedicated to economic equality." Wicker's outrage at America's deferred dreams and white backlash seems genuine, and he argues effectively that President Clinton's crime and economic policies have done little for poor blacks. His notion of integration admirably avoids melting-pot cliches; rather, he aspires to a situation of "amity," respect and equality. But Wicker's prescription founders on some practicalities. His proposed party would seek race-neutral policies to uplift the poor and expand jobs through public works programs and enhanced education. However, it's hardly clear that black Americans would unite around a class-based crusade, which more logically might be the province of America's fading left wing and fractured labor movement. Author tour.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.