Willie Richardson / Dec. 7, 2020

What Walter Williams Meant to Me

He was an inspiration to anyone who cared to listen to his ideas about Liberty.

“Let me offer you my definition of social justice: I keep what I earn and you keep what you earn. Do you disagree? Well then tell me how much of what I earn belongs to you — and why?”

A voice of reason, truth, logic, and common sense has recently passed away. Economist and Professor Walter Williams died last week. Devon Williams, his daughter, said he suddenly died in his car after teaching a class at George Washington University in Virginia. Williams said he had “chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and hypertension.” He taught for 40 years and was 84 years old.

Williams, a prominent conservative economist, author, and political commentator who expressed skeptical views of government efforts to aid his fellow African Americans and other minority groups, was a force to be reckoned with. Oftentimes, a voice like his is not taken seriously by the massive minority population because it doesn’t fit a liberal logic. Hard work, determination, and perseverance in the face of opposition is “oppressive speech” to the modern-day black liberal. To require that a minority male can choose better for himself although growing up in dysfunctional circumstances goes against the minority groupthink.

Walter Williams made no such excuses for the black population as it related to racism, family, or economics. He wrote:

Crime is a major problem for many black communities, but how much of it can be attributed to causes such as institutional racism, systemic racism and white privilege?

The most devastating problem is the very weak black family structure. Less than a third of black children live in two-parent households and illegitimacy stands at 75%. The “legacy of slavery” is often blamed. Such an explanation turns out to be sheer nonsense when one examines black history. Even during slavery, where marriage was forbidden, most black children lived in biological two-parent families. Professor Herbert G. Gutman’s research in “The Black Family in Slavery and Freedom 1750-1925” found that in three-fourths of 19th-century slave families, all the children had the same mother and father. In New York City, in 1925, 85% of black households were two-parent. In fact, “Five in six children under the age of six lived with both parents.”

How was he able to come to these conclusions as a black man? What got into him that gave him such courage and tenacity to tell it like it is? Because character far outweighed his skin color. He didn’t listen to leftist ideology of chains being wrapped around his hands and feet as a victim. He unchained his mind of any excuses that would weigh him down to fit in with the crowd.

I honor this man for the legacy he left behind. Thank you, sir, for your courage, character, leadership, and profound ideas. You will be missed, but you left an indelible mark. You served your fellow man well.

“Prior to capitalism, the way people amassed great wealth was by looting, plundering and enslaving their fellow man. Capitalism made it possible to become wealthy by serving your fellow man.”

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