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A 'Slave Health Deficit'?

Saturday, February 12, 2005; Page A17

I have known Courtland Milloy for more than 20 years, and although I have disagreed with him at times, I have always considered him to be sensible and sensitive. But his Feb. 6 Metro column about the president's call for Social Security reform causes me to highly recommend that he see a race therapist.

Milloy contradicts himself. He lays out all the ways that we blacks are killing ourselves: cigarettes, unprotected sex, obesity and high salt intake. Then he indicates that somehow these self-inflicted wounds are about a "slave health deficit," and that some researchers say they have found links between hypertension and racism. He then concludes that somehow the president not only does not care but is a cheerleader for this black dance of death -- all because he wants privatization of Social Security so badly that he wants blacks to die early to make a case for it.

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Milloy needs to take a deep breath and recognize that white racism has not and cannot operate by remote control to force blacks to engage in this self-destructive behavior. If he has knowledge of how whites have invented some sort of remote control device that causes blacks to engage in self-destructive behavior, then he should tell us where it is. That would be a real story.

-- Robert L. Woodson Sr.


The writer is founder and president of the National Center for Neighborhood Enterprise.

© 2005 The Washington Post Company