Biggest mistake was the so-called Black leadership for a greater part of the 20th century discarding the Washington philosophy for the Marcus Garvey/W.E.B. DuBois one.
Rarely mentioned, but the sole Black member of Congress at the start of the FDR era, Republican Oscar Stanton DePriest of Chicago, refused to get on board the welfare state train, citing that it would destroy his people. It’s how the Democrats finally made their breakthrough into the Black vote in the ‘30s, and where the slow deterioration began, to explode within 3 decades.
Before that point, Blacks had more intact families (and lower illegitimacy rates) than Whites. Big government and the welfare state alone — not slavery (for which many had already overcome), is responsible for the breakdown. Not even the KKK in their wildest fantasies could’ve inflicted the damage leftist policies and schemes did.
Absolutely right. It’s unfortunate that the likes of Du Bois, and later, Malcom X, Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, Cornel, et al, are revered in American history while Booker T. Washington is dismissed as an accommodating “Uncle Tom.”
Everyone—black, white, hispanic, etc.—would serves themselves well by following the lessons of Booker Washington’s life and his philosophy.
Norrell’s book, Up from History, is a fantastic read, by the way.