The Minneapolis Story Home Page

The Experience of Ron Edwards

A Renaissance Black Man in a White Man's World

A Beacon for Freedom in the City

Solution Papers

Home | All Solution Papers » | All Columns » | All Blogs »

Solution Paper #35: Comments on The Kerner Report

Excerpts, June 25, 2009, from A Seat for Everyone, The Freedom Guide that Explores A Vision for America
Beacon On The Hill Press, 2008, pp. 4-5, 10-11, 38, 82
by Ron Edwards

pp. 4-5:
Today, I am appalled to see very similar behavior in the NAACP, the Urban League, and the Minneapolis Department of Civil Rights. They've sold out to the White majority, and are no longer fighting for Black rights. But despite what the Kerner Commission or the author of the The Bell Curve will tell you, Blacks aren't different and they aren’t dumber. Both the NAACP and the Urban League act as a bunch of Mr. Charlie House Boys while the master whips the field hands. And then they wonder why only 1% of Black America belongs to the NAACP. Who wants to join an organization that at best remains silent, and at worst supports the very acts it was founded to fight against?

pp. 10-11:
In 1865, the Civil War ended and slavery was abolished. Over 618,000 Americans gave their lives to make the country whole again, and allow us to realize the words of our great Declaration of Independence: that all people are created equal, and should be able to enjoy certain inalienable rights. But Reconstruction was a disaster, and in 1876 the Jim Crow laws went into effect, as our country tried to live the laughable fallacy of "separate but equal." It was almost a hundred years before the Civil Rights Act of 1964 struck down Jim Crow. But only four years later, the 1968 Kerner Commission stated that Blacks can't make it without the support and direction of the government. It stated that we were different and, thus incapable.

Look what they did to our people. They shackled us with words as surely as our ancestors were shackled with steel. We have been defined as being incapable. Under the guise of protecting us, the government has segregated us once again.

We have created our own middle passage from freedom back to bondage. Our young men are taken to physical prisons of bricks and mortar or the invisible prison of drugs and violence.

It all boils down to a simple lesson I was taught by my mentor, Nellie Stone Johnson: no education no jobs, no housing, no families, no hope. For nearly 50 years I have been a community activist in Minneapolis. I continue telling my Minneapolis story on my weekly TV show, in my weekly column, and on my web page. I am a community activist in the model of Nellie Stone Johnson. I am fighting for progress – and fighting against those who would turn back the clock on the accomplishments we've made so far.

p. 38:
We are fighting a contest of ideas. Our enemies are those who believe the lies of the Kerner Commission report – that blacks are inherently different and, thus, inferior. There is even pseudo-science being written to support such idiocy, most notably The Bell Curve, which states that Black people are biologically less intelligent than Whites. Our people have been further insulted by the implication that the only areas we can excel in are athletics and entertainment.

Many books have been written to document the falsehood of these fallacies, documenting the tremendous contribution of Black people in all of the disciplines, including science, mathematics, medicine, law, education, and business. Still, the noisy gong of racism is hard to silence.

p. 82:
The Kerner-Ing Of America And How To Un-Kerner America, December 13, 2003

Posted 3-22-10

Ron hosts “Black Focus” on Channel 17, MTN-TV, Sundays, 5-6 pm. Formerly head of the Minneapolis Civil Rights Commission and the Urban League, he continues his “watchdog” role for Minneapolis. Order his book, hear his voice, read his solution papers, and read his between columns “web log” at

Permission is granted to reproduce The Minneapolis Story columns, blog entires and solution papers. Please cite the Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder and for the columns. Please cite for blog entries and solution papers.

Home | All Solution Papers » | All Columns » | All Blogs »