WEB DuBois called the color line the problem of the 20th century, and I’ve been thinking lately about whether it was solved. That I could write this column, A white father afraid for his black sons, says yes, and no. Yes, because I’m too conventional to have crossed the color line to get married if race were still a major societal problem. No, because statistics on single parenthood, levels of income, education and incarceration, unemployment rates and access to capital all say that the problem of the color line remains, and may have worsened.
So is the color line the problem of the 21st century? I think the line has been partially erased, and that lessens the magnitude of the problem in some ways, but makes it worse in others. I may do more writing on this subject.