Stamped from the beginning is a history lesson from beginning to end on race, class, discrimination and socio-economic disparity in America. Dr. Kend reminds us that the root cause of slavery and oppression were economic, and while many of the laws have been eliminated, the resulting poverty and subsequent class system remains. Perhaps the most unsettling is the author’s assessment that new laws and covert systems have been put in place to maintain the class system status quo.
In the book, there are places in the historical account of Black scholarship (and leadership) in America that are challenging at best—and disturbing at worst. In the book, the discussions on Dubois or Booker T. Washington; Dubois or Marcus Garvey; Dubois or Malcolm X; Dubois or Martin Luther King Jr. left me perplexed as to why there was always constant intellectual disagreement. While Dubois was an avid voice and advocate for the talented 10th, history has shown us that the masses –or the other ninety percent never made it to the
middle class. Now with the middle class shrinking globally, it is uncertain as to which social experiments will yield future gains for the underserved.
How will Blacks in America transcend the bondage of slavery, Jim Crow, and racism? I will wait to read the author’s next book this fall, How to be an Anti-Racist.
What have we learned in the unprecedented year of 2020 about race, class, poverty and the future to come?