Fear of a "Black" America
hits at the heart of America's collective hypocrisy around diversity and race. A contributing factor is the misconstruing of "diversity" or "multiculturalism" with "race," "Black," and "African American." Multiculturalism is really about transforming American education and culture by giving all--regardless of race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, and socioeconomic status--a voice and a chance at enjoying all that America is supposed to offer.
Fear of a "Black" America demonstrates the historical connections between multiculturalism and African Americans. Although multiculturalism has many supporters, cultural equality remains a tough pill for highbrow American culture, mainstream Americans, and many elite African Americans to swallow. Fear of a "Black" America's other theme centers on the recent battles over multiculturalism among African Americans and in the mainstream public arena. The main story is how the media worked in concert with conservatives to label multiculturalism as "Black," "evil," and "divisive." These forces killed multiculturalism in the American public discourse, even as employers, school districts, and universities used the idea to address their increasingly diverse workforces and classrooms. Multiculturalism is similar to a ghost, neither fully dead nor alive, but in need of a resting place within America's multicultural future.