Black News

Dr. Boyce: Black Unemployment Gap is White Privilege 101

By Dr. Boyce Watkins,

The last calendar year was an interesting and progressive one for President Obama, at least on the economic front.  The president took over a struggling economy and has refused to openly address racial economic inequality.  At the same time, it’s easy to see that during the last calendar year, the Obama Administration has a few things to brag about in the area of Black unemployment.

According to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Black unemployment has dropped from 15.8% this time last year to 13% today.  Black men experienced the strongest decline, from 17.3% to 13.6%, while black women saw a decline from 12.8% to 10.8%.   Black teens, however, saw theirunemployment rate rise over the last year, from 37.5% to 38.2%.

While the improvements in Black unemployment were commendable, an overwhelming racial gap remains.  Little has been done to address the persistent gap between black and white unemployment, and African Americans remain at the back of the economic bus.  White unemployment holds steady at 7.4% this month, a rate that still has many white Americans highly upset at President Obama.  Ironically, the rate that whites complain about so readily is one that African Americans would be expected to celebrate.  That, my friends, is White Privilege 101.





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