The Splintering of Black America Ep. 6

“To be a poor man is hard, but to be a poor race in a land of dollars is the very bottom of hardships.”  W.E.B. DuBois

“Has not God chose those who are poor in the eye of the world to be rich in faith.” James–Brother of Jesus


Eugene Robinson in his book, Disintegration: The Splintering of Black America, says that, “There was a time when there were agreed upon ‘black leaders,’ when there was a clear ‘black agenda,” when we could talk confidently about ‘the state of black America’–but not anymore.”  The reason, Robinson argues, is we have splintered into four groups:

  • Mainstream
  • Transcendent
  • Emergent
  • Abandoned.

In this episode I demonstrate how wisdom, calling, sacrifice and jazz can help us to move forward together.


Disintegration: The Splintering of Black America by Eugene Robinson

He Aint’ Heavy by Gilbert Young

Let’s Connect

  • What would you say is the greatest challenge Black America is facing?
  • What do you think is most difficult about being black and Christian in America?
  • Should we retire the term “Black leader”?
  • Is it possible to have a Black agenda?
  • How do we unite our people? What do we have in common outside of our skin?

Thanks to these great artists for providing their music!

There are 3 thoughts below

  • Tyrone says:

    What would you say is the greatest challenge Black America is facing?

    I would have to say one of the greatest challenges Black America is facing is adopting the Malcolm X mentality instead of the Dr. King Mentality. I believe we subconsciously want to be the dominant race instead of wanting to be equal to all other races.

    What do you think is most difficult about being black and Christian in America?

    Honestly, I think that being black and Christian isn’t difficult at all. I believe we are treated equally across the board when it comes to being a black Christian. I believe the difficulty comes in when certain parts of Christianity are catered too based on race. For example, as a black Christian artist living in Colorado, there is no black gospel station here outside of 1220am, but there are multiple contemporary stations here that will not play black music due to ethnicity and color.

    Should we retire the term “Black leader”?

    In my opinion the term black leader means something different to each generation. For example, a black leader to my grandma would be Dr. King, Rosa Parks, and maybe Al Sharpton.

    Black leader to my generation would be a person that has a lot of money and in the spot light and gives money the needy or something of that nature. This would be similar to the transcendent quadrant (but I don’t think we should put jay z or Oprah in the same quadrant as Dr. King or Malcolm X. These individual need their own quadrant).

    Retiring the term “black leader” isn’t necessary, but redefining the definition to the current and future generations would reestablish what a black leader was (sankofa) and should be.

    Is it possible to have a Black agenda?

    I don’t really understand this question or this part in the podcast.

    How do we unite our people?

    The best way to unite blacks is to support each other and educate each other. We all have struggles in different areas of our lives but we have to learn to stop beating each other down.

  • Sherry says:

    Robert, I’m enjoying catching up on the episodes through the Stitcher app. I must say that this subject took me back to my childhood as I thought about the splintering of our people.

    For several months I’ve been thinking about this question: Was integration all that good for our people? What did we really get out of it. We could sit in the front of the bus instead of the back, no more separate
    bathrooms. We were no longer relegated to the balcony in movie theaters. When I’d visit my dad and grandparents in Beaumont, Texas during the summer, I can still see the metal plated signs above water fountains
    marked “Colored”. My grandmother and I would often ride the train to Denver, and in the train station in Beaumont there were separate waiting areas for blacks and whites. After integration, we could plop ourselves on
    the wooden benches in the white area at the train stations. But what did we really gain? Eventually, we could live and go to school where we wanted, but with that came the destruction of our communities.
    Gone were the black owned dry cleaners, grocery stores, and barbecue joints that were in walking distance. Integration was great in the sense that we were no longer confined to a particular area in the city, but
    we lost a lot. Black dollars that once circulated in our communities left for the suburbs, and many black businesses closed.

    About a year ago I started watching You Tube videos that featured Dr. Claud Anderson. He talks a lot about communities and rebuilding them. He points out that there is China Town, Little Italy, Polish Towns, Little Havana
    to name a few. Dr. Anderson tried to set up a Little Africa in Detroit. He had commitments from businesses to move to Detroit to help rebuild, and the blacks on the city counsel voted it down claiming it was racist. You could tell
    Dr. Anderson was frustrated and rightly so.

    We can still come together as Christians of every color and background, but I don’t see building up our own people through re-establishing communities where we help our people gain economically should cause
    any threat to the body of Christ.

    Either last year or the early part of this year, I wanted to start supporting black businesses. I was surprised when I looked for a black owned grocery store in Denver that I couldn’t find one.

    I have more on this, but I’d like to read what others think.

  • […] The Splintering of Black America […]