Reverend Jesse Lee Peterson isn’t a friend of many and he’s probably racked up quite a few more enemies with his latest comments in which he says he agrees with Newt Gingrich’s statements about black people demanding paychecks instead of food stamps. But Peterson took think a few steps further, as he usually does, saying what black people need to get back on the employment track is hard work—in the form of slavery.
“One of the things that I would do is take all black people back to the South and put them on the plantation so they would understand the ethic of working,” Peterson told The Huffington Post’s Black Voices. “I’m going to put them all on the plantation. They need a good hard education on what it is to work.”
Education, maybe. Plantation, no.
“People don’t want to hear the truth,” Peterson added. “Newt was 100 percent correct. Newt said that he would have black children, minority children work as janitors at school. Working as a janitor would build character, more so than the handouts so many of them like.
“I know some people take it personally because a whole lot of folks don’t like hearing the truth; they like to be in denial,” he said. “Not all black people, but most black people know, and white people know, and black people say it more in private than they would in public, but for the last 50 years or so, generations and generations of black people have relied on the government or someone else to take care of them.”
He goes on to paint all black women with the same generational welfare queen brush, while expressing hope that black people will turn away from the Democratic party and it’s “godless leaders.” It’s too bad he doesn’t understand that he’s feeding into all of the sterotypes every time he opens his mouth, and that he’s doing black people no favors when he puts forth such ridiculous suggestions. There are more ways to build character than by working as a slave or janitor, maybe the rev should give it a try so he can build some himself.
What do you think about Rev. Peterson’s comments? Is he doing the black community harm or good by speaking out like this?
Brande Victorian is a blogger and culture writer in New York City. Follower her on Twitter at @be_vic.
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