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In the land of the blind: Michael Scott for president

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In our ongoing attempt to ameliorate the shameful lack of mainstream media attention being given to Howard Schultz’s presidential aspirations, LGM presents I DON’T SEE COLOR: THE HOWARD SCHULTZ EXPERIENCE

Former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz was the featured guest at a CNN town hall on Tuesday in an appearance that is drawing more criticism from liberals who say the potential 2020 presidential candidate has not justified an independent bid they fear could result in President Donald Trump’s re-election.

Schultz drew ire and mockery on social media for many of his responses to the questions, which were long on political cliches but short on specifics.

In particular, Schultz was the target of taunting tweets for his statement that he doesn’t “see color” in response to a question about an April 2018 racial profiling incident that occurred at a Philadelphia Starbucks.

“As somebody who grew up in a very diverse background as a young boy in the projects, I didn’t see color as a young boy and I honestly don’t see color now,” Schultz said.

Cliff Notes:

(1) This is the guy who thought it was a great idea to strongly encourage his “partners” (corporate newspeak for “employees”) to engage in culture-altering conversations about race with Starbucks customers, when the latter were in the process of curtailing their Walpoling activities to negotiate the purchase of some caffeinated comestibles.

(2) When Stephen Colbert and Michael Scott said exactly the same thing, everyone in the world except for Howard Schultz understood this to be a joke.

(3) Howard Schultz went to a New York public high school at exactly the time that many such schools, including his, were racked with severe racial tension and conflict. (A bitter strike in 1968 had racial politics at its center).  From a New York Times story published during Schultz’s junior year at Canarsie High School:

Racial fears and resentment are steadily eroding relations between white teachers and administrators and black students in many, possibly most, high schools here.

In a few schools, this erosion has gone so far as to create conditions of paralyzing anarchy in which large police detachments have been deemed necessary to keep classrooms functioning and put down sporadic outbursts of violence by rebellious students.

More generally, the widening gulf between white adults and black youths in the schools convinces increasing numbers of blacks and whites that the fading promise of school integration can never be more than a hollow piety. . .

Many whites from the Jefferson district have used fake ad dresses to send their children across the racial boundary formed by Linden Boulevard to Canarsie High School, which is about 75 per cent white—“a nice, solid ethnic balance,” ac cording to its principal, Isadore S. Rosenman.

But Canarsie has had its troubles. After rioting last year it found it expedient to eliminate the lunch period, [ed.: !!] as a way of preventing racial clashes in the lunch room.

Canarsie has also tried positive measures to over come the disinclination of black students to become involved in the school’s extra curricular life. For instance, it is now routine to have two [b]ands at all dances, one black, the other white.

Teachers use words like “magnificent” and “beautiful” to describe relations at Canarsie. But most black students appeared to agree with Vernon Lewis, a senior, who said, “Here you always have the feeling there is someone behind you, looking at you.”

They contended that they would have more freedom of expression at a predominantly black school like Jefferson. The contrast between the bulletin hoards of the Afro‐American clubs at the two schools indicated the range. The Canarsie board told of scholarships available to blacks; the one at Jefferson carried the Black Panther newspaper.

Within a few years Canarsie would have almost no white students: the school was closed in 2011, and replaced with a set of new schools housed in the same building, in which 2.07% of the student population is white non-Hispanic.

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