Blackout: How Black America Can Make Its second Escape from the Democrat Plantation, by Candace Owens. Published September 15, 2020. Hardcover, 320 pages.
I looked forward to reading this book for many reasons, but learning new information was not one of them. I “left the Democrat plantation” over two decades ago, when I was in my early twenties. I knew that there would be scant little here that I don’t already know. Candace Owens stands on the shoulders of giants, black intellectuals that I first encountered when she was but a tyke. Those giants are men like Dr. Thomas Sowell, Dr. Walter E. Williams, and the esteemed Larry Elder.
Owens is important because she offers these perspectives in a simple, straightforward way to a new generation, yet without insulting its intelligence. The Emperor of Progressivism is naked, especially as it relates to delivering any kind of benefit to the black community, and she calls that out. For anyone willing to look past emotionalism and demagoguery, to look for evidence and at hard facts, this is obvious. Too many people aren’t willing to do that, and the black community is poorer for it, both literally and figuratively; culturally and economically.
Candace Owens is often ripped on for growing and changing from the girl who experienced a documented racial incident to a woman who figured out that leftism really doesn’t give a darn about black people. There are few black people who haven’t experienced racism at some point.
The fact that there are individual idiots among us is not breaking news, and it doesn’t mean we should have to pledge our blind, lifelong allegiance to a party that mostly pays lip service to fighting racism. Especially when a mere scratch of the surface clearly reveals that they are the true racists, using the black community as a vehicle for political power. But this is about the book, and I am digressing. This was one of my favorite quotes:
Prior to the abolishment of Jim Crow laws, black Americans had never been granted true freedom. Segregation made it so that we were still oppressed through various limitation. Blacks were not free to choose where to educate themselves, where to live, or even whom to socialize with. Unfortunately, however, LBJ continued his address by stating, “But freedom is not enough. You do not wipe away the scars of centuries by saying, ‘Now you are free to go where you want, and do as you desire, and choose the leaders you please.'”
Here he is wrong. Dangerously wrong. Being freed was enough for black America. The year 1964 should have represented a new beginning, when we began assuming full responsibility over our own lives.
After outlining some of the things we should have felt free to do on the strength of our own competency and ability, Owens continues:
Against this reality the president who granted us our rights told us, in the same breath, that we needed help from white Americans to get ahead. Miraculously, just as soon as we were given personal responsibility, it was taken away. In the darkest of ironies, after 345 years of having our personal responsibility stripped from us by governing white society, we allowed that same society to take it right back. Their method for taking it had certainly changed. Rather than callously telling us that we couldn’t be responsible for ourselves, by outwardly barring and banning us from various institutions, this time, they began telling us we shouldn’t be responsible for ourselves because it was unimaginable that blacks would suddenly be expected to perform at their level.
This is spot on, and it’s glaringly obvious to anyone willing to look past the faux empathy and nauseating white guilt to see what has really been going on for the past 60 years. Spoiler alert: The Democrat party didn’t “switch”. Love her or hate her, this is a smart young woman.
I liked the book, overall. There were a few points of opinion on which I disagreed with Owens, but the overall thrust of her book is well presented, and most importantly, well sourced. The final 19 of the 320 pages consist of notes so that the reader can check the quotes, stats, and historical information present for themselves.
I do think the book could have done well with a fairly ruthless editor. There were instances where the friendship of commas would have been valuable. There were a few minor literary faux pas, but the average reader would hardly notice them, and are not certified copy editors. Since the book is written for the average reader, these are perfectly forgivable. I only mention them because I recognize that some people who read this blog are the types who will notice minor verbiage issues and sentence structure. In the grand scheme however, these are insignificant.
The fact that we live in an age where distortions, half-truths, and outright lies are being used to manipulate black Americans to a regressive rather than a truly progressive future makes this book important for millennials and younger generations to read. It’s a prescription for black Americans, but I would argue that it is an enlightening book for all Americans. I can hardly believe we are having serious discussions about socialism and praising the virtues of forced segregation. Make no mistake: that is exactly what we are doing. The fact that black students and activists are forcing it doesn’t make it any less forced.
In short, I recommend this book. It breaks down and strips bare the truth of what we are being sold as black Americans, and Americans as a whole.
4 out of 5 stars.