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Perhaps you have already had the good/bad fortune to come upon an article at Forbes.com called If I Were a Poor Black Kid. This article is written by a “middle class” white accountant, consulting firm owner, business technology columnist, and former senior manager at KPMG named Gene Marks. Sounds totally “middle class”. Probably an income of $60k a year, you think?
You can see where this is going. My personal additional annoyance beyond the many more obvious ones is: does he really expect to be reaching poor black kids by publishing a blog post on Forbes.com? Obviously not. He never intended for this “advice” to reach a real world poor black kid. He is writing for wealthy white people, at the expense of poor black kids, in an attempt to unearth a dead horse and beat it some more: i.e. the myth that blacks wouldn’t be so poor if they just worked harder. Note of hilarity: This column was originally titled “If I Was a Poor Black Kid”, but so many people were amused by his poor grammar that someone corrected it.
So read it for yourself if you enjoy bathing in a rich froth of righteous privilege and oblivion as to how the real world works.
OR, read one of these amazing and insightful rebuttals, which attempt to relieve Mr. Marks of his embarrassing ignorance.
If I Were a Rich White Dude by Jeff Yang
Trolling The Internet With ‘If I Were A Poor Black Kid’ by Kashmir Hill
A Muscular Empathy by Ta-Nehisi Coates
If I Were the Middle Class White Guy Gene Marks by Kelly Virella
An Ode to a ‘Poor Black Kid’ I Never Knew: How Forbes Gets Poverty Wrong by Cord Jefferson
If I Were Gene Marks by Carolyn Edgar
If I were a wealthy white suburbanite by DN Lee
If Gene Marks Were a Poor Black Kid Who Went to Ballou In 2003 by Shani Hilton
If I Was A Poor Black Kid, I’d Key Gene Marks’s Car by Peter Vidani