It’s true that the boundaries of the collective create problems for the individual – problems that should be confronted and wrestled with. But this a human problem, and the implication that black people are in exclusive or chronic possession of that problem strikes me as wrong-headed. On the contrary, there is a strong argument that African-Americans are one of the most inclusive ethnic groups in the country. Our leadership has been historically cosmopolitan, featuring deep roots in the Caribbean (Malcolm X, Marcus Garvey) and in the white community (Booker T. Washington, Frederick Douglass, Walter White.) I can’t think of another ethnic group with a longer history of practicing both Christianity and Islam. You may not see more diverse gathering of phenotypes grouped under one race, then you will see at a black family reunion. This is not because black people are virtuous, it’s because white racism in this country was pervasive and strict. And faced with that stricture black people did what humans tend to do – they invented themselves. Again.