With Trayvon's death, it has become apparent that some people, even some very kind people, had no idea that black mothers need to have "the talk" with their sons. And others, too,—less kind—have revealed what they do not know as well, white men such as John Derbyshire, who took it upon himself to say there is a white version of "the talk" that white parents give to their children. This talk teaches white children to fear black people they don't know. Thank you, Mr. Derbyshire, for proving how the cycle works. We in America run like rats in one big wheel, the ugly circle of racial life.
I'm posting my 2008 mini-essay again, today, April 9, 2012, because I'm still processing the depth of Derbyshire's historical illiteracy. This illiteracy manifested itself in his presumption that his "white version of the talk" would be useful when it hit the Net under the tag "RACIAL POLITICS" at Taki's Magazine (In the Derbyshire case, that is tacky perhaps?). He thought it would be good to inject into this uniquely American atmosphere already singed with passions surrounding Trayvon's death the same old virus: Beware the Black Other, the monster. Taki Magazine, by the way, is a publication that claims to disdain ideology, implying some kind of neutrality in politics. The devil nestles in self-proclaimed neutrality on political matters, believe me.
I'm still processing Derbyshire's level of ignorance on race matters, ...
Read full essay as well as an older, 2008 essay on having "the talk" with my black son at this link.