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Toldson Hits the Mark

In a speech last March Ivory Toldson expressed in the most direct terms what many others have been saying but have not been heard, or at least not getting out to the public. Here's an excerpt from an article on the speech.

Toldston (sic) said the media’s constant negative — and in many cases, inaccurate — portrayal of black men leads to a vicious cycle that essentially serves to limit black men by sending them a message that they aren’t expected to succeed.

“All we hear are these dire statistics about black males,” Toldston(sic)said.

“But in every one of these neighborhoods, there is someone who’s made it,” he said, as the audience applauded. “By not acknowledging those who make it out we’re missing out on something really big.”

Toldston(sic) said that many statistics propagated as conventional wisdom are actually false. For example, he said, many people believe more black men are incarcerated today than are enrolled in college, a statistic that many journalists and speakers such as President Barack Obama have cited in the past.

That statistic may have been true in 2000, but in 2012, it is far from the truth, Toldston(sic) said Today, 1.2 million black men are enrolled in college while 841,000 are in jail, he said.

Toldston sic said that black boys are told from a young age that the deck is stacked against them and they will likely drop out of high school, end up in jail, never be married and never make as much money as white men.

“As a young kid, hearing that, it can turn into a self-fulfilling prophesy,” he said. “The successes of young black males need to be highlighted.”