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Without conversations equipped for 21st century issues and conflicts, you never know what is good for us and what is not – and who is racist and who may not be.

 The general consensus is that the health care reform proposed by the Democrats is good for Black America – that is, until you look at how the legislation may impact the job creators of the nation and its effect on Black employment numbers that remain in the double digits nationally.

The general thought is that Republicans are working only to secure big business’ needs in an effort that leaves Black America and minorities behind – that is, until you look at the proposals from the Republicans that hope to create lower costs across the nation through competition and an environment of instant business stimulation (i.e., tax cuts) versus conditional business primers (i.e., tax incentives – something that comes after an action) to get the lower- and middle-classes re-energized and re-engaged in the economy.

And sometimes the general belief is that proposals from liberals that push for increasing funding for programs in schools and social services will benefit its constituents in long-term ways – that is, until the statistical data comes in to show that those very programs may aid the disintegration of Black families and urban communities.

Let’s be truthful: any of those moves against the status quo beliefs (particularly in the third scenario) would prompt many of us to call the proponents of the other side of the argument “racists.”

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And that is where we would be wrong without investigating the true merits of such arguments.

Tavis Smiley’s “We Count!” event on Saturday and other recent issues surrounding race and politics highlight the nature of the 21st century racism and, more importantly, our detection and address of the repugnant American poison. 1960s approaches and beliefs about racism do not apply to 21st century problems within Black America, even if some of those problems are directly tied to racism. This dynamic holds true for many reasons. For starters, some of the same people that most would assume would be racists (including several of the Tea Party activists that I have personally met) lovingly carry around African-American and Latino-American grandchildren. Further, if one does the math on their ages, it would become clear that these people grew up during the 20th century’s Civil Rights Movement (i.e., I believe that we are approaching one for the 21st century very soon) and, therefore, purport the viewpoints of King and others as foundational staples from their youth. With these factors in mind, citizens within America of all backgrounds realize fully the interconnectivity with each other, particularly in light of the global economy and technology that we enjoy today. More than ever, our individual pursuits of happiness as promised in our founding documents are tied to a collective right to pursuit that right without legal of social inhibitions.

With a changing America – from a minority point of view but moreso from a “majority” point of view – it is more important than ever to communicate through challenges to bring about soluti