led off the panel by questioning the assumptions of
white supremacy which she says lie behind any racial conversation.
pointed out that we have to "search for the kernel
of truth in what the other side is saying." He advocated withholding judgment
of one another's views until we reach the end of one conversation, and added
that conversation for its own sake might be counterproductive.
Harvard sociology professor Orlando Patterson, author of the book,
The Ordeal of Integration, argued that the state of black America, like
the state of racial relations in the country generally, has much improved since
Columbia Law School professor Patricia Williams shared a touching
story about the ordeal she experienced while arranging a mortgage for her
summer home on Martha's Vineyard. Her story demonstrates that while the black
middle class has advanced, race is still for many of them a double-edged
wrapped up the major themes of the panel and posed a
pointed question for the country.
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