This new book by law professor Ralph Richard Banks is likely the first public "concession" by a prominent African American and academician that (1) "black marriage" in America is dead, and that (2) we shouldn't try to resurrect it (directly).
His necessarily provocative contention appears to be that black middle class women have been, as he stated, "taking one for the team" and going without what they deserve from the institution of marriage (due to a chronic undersupply of eligible middle class black males) for far too long and that they should now specifically look beyond race for spouses.
A WSJ article on the story wasÂ reportedly the most clicked on story for WSJ readers (who are hardly a demographic obsessed with a topic like the marital state of affairs of middle class black women) over a weekend that included an historic debt downgrade.
He's already angered others with comments like this:
"It's time for black women to stop being held hostage to the deficiencies of black men."
I've read not a page yet, but applaud people who dare to credibly put on the table a practical, andÂ genuinely new and overdue discussion and who try starting the most relevant and inconvenient conversations about race, gender, class, politics, economics and other topics of real consequence for the human experience. Â He has not gotten black people's permission to think these thoughts or write this book which may be a main reason it is ultimately found to hold some real value. So good for him, I say. And us.