Black People Not Agreeing

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The Root calls this heated debate between Al Sharpton and Cornel West, "a little uncomfortable." I call it awesome. I think one of the best things to come out of Obama's election is the retirement of The Office of HNIC (intermittently held by Frederick Douglass, Marcus Garvey, and Booker T. Washington, among others.)


Given that black people are humans, debate isn't really new. But it's good to see this on a national stage. I don't much agree with West on this specific point, or on his general critique of Obama. But I am glad to seem him making it, and glad to see Al Sharpton (who saw this coming?) answering it.

I only wish we could stop using the word "love" and "brother" in reference to people we passionately disagree with. It feels like John McCain's "my friend."

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Ta-Nehisi Coates is a national correspondent at The Atlantic, where he writes about culture, politics, and social issues. He is the author of the memoir The Beautiful Struggle. More

Born in 1975, the product of two beautiful parents. Raised in West Baltimore -- not quite The Wire, but sometimes ill all the same. Studied at the Mecca for some years in the mid-'90s. Emerged with a purpose, if not a degree. Slowly migrated up the East Coast with a baby and my beloved, until I reached the shores of Harlem. Wrote some stuff along the way.

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