Streams

Black Americans, By the Numbers

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Monique Morris, co-founder of the National Black Women’s Justice Institute and the author of Black Stats: African Americans by the Numbers in the Twenty-first Century, shares the good news and the bad contained in the statistics on black Americans. She is joined by Dr Khalil Gibran Muhammad director of the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture at The New York Public Library and the author of The Condemnation of Blackness, who also wrote the introduction to Morris' book.


Some of the Stats Mentioned on Air

  • R&B albums outsold hip-hop 2:1 in 2012
  • Black K-12 students are 16 percent of the public school population but get 35 percent of the suspensions
  • 36 percent of Black women do not use hair straightening products, up ten points since 2010
  • The percentage of Black people among the executives and managers in the private sector is 3%

Guests:

Monique Morris and Dr Khalil Gibran Muhammad
News, weather, Radiolab, Brian Lehrer and more.
Get the best of WNYC in your inbox, every morning.

Comments [29]

interesting -- not exactly sure what it is but something big was missing from this conversation.

Jan. 28 2014 03:38 PM

Come on John, that's unbecoming any upright walking human being. It's no wonder most of the people in this forum don't take you seriously. It takes all kinds I guess :-(

Jan. 28 2014 03:01 PM
Edward from Washington Heights AKA pretenious Hudson Heights

blacksocialist from BKbaby,

Growing up, did your father stay with your mother and you and your siblings - or did he abandon your family?

Jan. 28 2014 01:02 PM
john from office

Negro Socialist seems peeved! Proving the lack of emotional control. Get out the spears!!

Jan. 28 2014 01:02 PM
blacksocialist from BKbaby

illfg - that makes no sense... did you graduate high school?

Jan. 28 2014 12:07 PM
blacksocialist from BKbaby

illfg and sam - preach on self righteous white men, owners of the most savge brutal group of people on earth... you people are so thick you dont even see the irony..... so sad, so pathetic

Jan. 28 2014 12:01 PM

@blacksocialist from BKbaby - except for the fact that you call caucasians
"whites" and your name is "blacksocialist". the hypocrisy is rich.

Jan. 28 2014 12:00 PM

@sam from bknyc - thank you for speaking up about it. most people will say what you wrote is BS and racist but the truth is, black america is not being held down by any other group more effectively than themselves. MLK didnt just fight against oppression he also fought against keeping yourself down. Being the best you can be is how you elevate yourself. That means having manners, respect for yourself AND OTHER PEOPLE and getting out of the trap of victimization.

Jan. 28 2014 11:55 AM
blacksocialist from BKbaby

miscell - ok, but such questions, your initial questions, are ones to be answered by white people as they were the ones that made and are still making race an issue. there wouldnt be a race issue if it werent for whites...

Jan. 28 2014 11:54 AM
Sheldon from Brooklyn

It's amazing how people wrap up culture and class into race.

Poor or inadequate parenting, compounded by poverty and lack of education is the real culprit and is just as prevalent in poor, rural, uneducated "White America."

Considering this country's historic treatment of its black citizens, it should not surprise anyone that a disproportionate amount of this group happen to be black. However, it is still a minority in the black community.

Ignorant comments by "John from Office" will not change that.

Jan. 28 2014 11:47 AM
Miscellaneous from NYC

@ blacksocialist from BKbaby:

Not rhetorical. Legitimate questions. Don't look at these questions through the eyes of a cynic; look at them through the eyes of a sociologlist from outer space who comes here to study our society.

If people want to participate in American society as a whole, they can and do. If I join a quilting group, I don't care what the race, ethnicity, color or religion of the other quilters is. I just want to know that they can sew, have decent color perception, good taste and artistic leanings, and have showered recently. But they are all quilters. Same goes if I join any group. As long as I have the ability to participate, why should I not? We are all Americans as long as we all want to be Americans. What disqualifies a person - not counting illegal entry into the country - is being a terrorist or wanting to destroy America. There are other countries for those who don't like our way of life. Color, race, ethnicity, religion should not differentiate us here UNLESS we make a point of differentiating ourselves and refusing to participate.

Jan. 28 2014 11:45 AM
M.T. from Brooklyn

What does this accomplish? It gives us reasons for accepting failure because of our circumstances of history - even given the many of us that have risen in-spite of them, as high as the Presidency. It indoctrinates the next generation into accepting failure because of their lot in life. Let's move beyond these labels, race, religion, gender, blah, blah, blah. Try promoting our successes.

Jan. 28 2014 11:42 AM
MikeInBrklyn from Clinton Hill

The label "black" has done more damage to people of African decent than good. It has been the perfect foil for disenfranchising non-causian people in this country (maybe the world). People of color(e.g. Indian, Asians, etc.), who also experience discimination run away from the label, given what it connotes. This label has worked perfectly to prevent people wwith similar experiences from leveraging their numbers to strengthen their positions in American society.

Jan. 28 2014 11:39 AM
john from office

So 83 % of people checking the homework are idiots?

Jan. 28 2014 11:37 AM
foodaggro from Brooklyn

"87% of black students have had their homework checked by an adult."
How did she come up with that number? 87% of how many people?
... Now she's just rattling off statistics.

Jan. 28 2014 11:36 AM

Is there a way to statistically quantify the so-called "White Privilege" ? Controlling for age, sex and racem etc., what is the societal stipend accorded to the ruling minority simply because they are not obviously ethnic, former slaves, women, disabled,...

Jan. 28 2014 11:36 AM

John, where are the data to support your assertion?

Jan. 28 2014 11:35 AM
sam from bknyc

I taught in public schools in nyc for 10 years, loved my students, but the black ones (male and female) were ALWAYS the most physical, most violent, angriest and most hostile and difficult to deal with and SO WERE THEIR PARENTS> They had the MOST opportunities available to them in terms of scholarships and college aid and yet the LEAST likely to avail themselves of it we couldn't even get them to hand in applications on time and had to resort to tracking them down at the own houses to get the damn forms to be able to submit them. Totally self-destructive.

And I live in Crown height and I see a young black mom punching, verbally threatening with violence and cursing at her 4-10 year old kid almost every week on my way to work. different people each time but the amount of abuse in the poorer black community is rampant and probably explains a lot.

Jan. 28 2014 11:35 AM
pliny from soho

murder?

Jan. 28 2014 11:34 AM
blacksocialist from BKbaby

miscell - is that rhetorical? are you white? i'll give you an answer, when white people stop playing the race card.....

Jan. 28 2014 11:33 AM
john from office

Brian problem is black parenting or the lack thereof. The vast majority of black immigrant households, do very well. They have parents at home.

Jan. 28 2014 11:33 AM
fuva from harlemworld

That stat on black women's hair is encouraging...
Yes, the mythology of black inferiority is ongoing. Even amongst so called "progressives" who bandy negative black stats with no acknowledgement of their source...This is counterproductive and counterproductively white supremacist. We can do better...
This book fills an important informational void and I will buy a few copies. But, as Dr. Muhammad correctly acknowledges, we need stats AND explanation.

Jan. 28 2014 11:32 AM
Amy from Manhattan

"Meta-stat"? I hope it's not metastatic! (I know, the topic's serious, & I take it seriously, but I couldn't pass up that pun.)

Jan. 28 2014 11:32 AM
Tanner

What percentage of black Americans live in an urban area. How dense are urban areas... LOL. I would also hazard a guess that most of the older coal fired plants are near north eastern industrialized cities, also having higher minority concentrations.

Jan. 28 2014 11:31 AM
foodaggro from Brooklyn

What is the point of this trivia-style game? Most people don't have these statistics on hand. Pretty weak, Brian.

Jan. 28 2014 11:30 AM
Yoichi Hariguchi from Sam Francisco

Silly deceptive stats.

Black is 13% of Americans, but 100% of President of the U.S.

Jan. 28 2014 11:30 AM
McGuan from Princeton

Why does an educated woman such as Monique Morris perpetuate the use of the word "race".

There is only the human race.

Jan. 28 2014 11:28 AM

Is Kindle the only ebook format. I need an .epub!

Jan. 28 2014 11:28 AM
Miscellaneous from NYC

When are we going to stop being white Americans and Black Americans and African Americans and just start being Americans?

Does separating Americans by race or ethnicity perpetuate the blame game?

Does separating Americans by race or ethnicity perpetuate stereotypes?

Jan. 28 2014 11:28 AM

Leave a Comment

Register for your own account so you can vote on comments, save your favorites, and more. Learn more.
Please stay on topic, be civil, and be brief.
Email addresses are never displayed, but they are required to confirm your comments. Names are displayed with all comments. We reserve the right to edit any comments posted on this site. Please read the Comment Guidelines before posting. By leaving a comment, you agree to New York Public Radio's Privacy Policy and Terms Of Use.