In the generation after 1940, blacks made major progress, narrowing economic differentials between them and others while discriminatory barriers began a real decline. However, black economic progress since about 1970 has been far more uneven, not mainly because of residual racial prejudice but rather largely because government efforts to alleviate poverty and other problems have disproportionately hurt African Americans, destroying robust family lives, leading to reduced workforce participation, and making disproportionate numbers of blacks de facto wards of the state.

Richard K. Vedder is a Senior Fellow at the Independent Institute, Distinguished Emeritus Professor of Economics at Ohio University, and author of Restoring the Promise: Higher Education in America.
Culture and SocietyRace Issues
Other Independent Review articles by Richard K. Vedder
Winter 2022/23 The Best of Times, The Worst of Times...
Fall 2022 Black Liberation through the Marketplace: Hope, Heartbreak, and the Promise of America
Fall 2013 The Declining Importance of Race and Gender in the Labor Market: The Role of Employment Discrimination Policies
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