National Review Hosts All-White Symposium on Black Unemployment


Maybe African American unemployment isn’t as bad as they say, given the National Review‘s inability to find an actual African American conservative to participate in its online “symposium” on Black unemployment and the racial recession.  Hopefully everyone was just too busy working.

There’s some good thoughts about why unemployment rates are so high for African Americans and the commentators offer some interesting libertarian and private market solutions. Sure, there’s the usual handwringing over racial categories and the obligatory argument that charter schools are the answer to all ills.

But wouldn’t it have been interesting to have an actual African American make one of those suggestions?  If you are going to talk about African Americans and minorities, doesn’t it make sense to actually invite someone up to the virtual boardroom?

It’s not as though National Review doesn’t know any African Americans conservatives.  Peter Kirsanow is a regular poster at the Corner and an expert in labor and employment law, as well as a member of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights. Delroy Murdock often shows up at the National Review and the folks over at the magazine and website are in love with economist Thomas Sowell, who likely knows a thing or two about unemployment and the economy. Or they could have even called up Michael Steele, who could use a break from sorting through credit card receipts from bondage-themed nightclubs.

Instead, they rounded up the usual suspects like Roger Clegg, someone from the Manhattan Institute’s City Journal, a fellow from the libertarian Reason Foundation, and one of the Thernstroms. The irony is that the American Enterprise Institute‘s Kevin Hassett even sees there is a conservative problem with minorities, explaining “[i]f conservatives want to appeal to black Americans, they can start by admitting there is a problem.”

A good first step to admitting there is a problem would be asking some actual black Americans to the symposium.

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