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Enough: The Phony Leaders, Dead-End Movements, and Culture of Failure That Are Undermining Black America--and What We Can Do About It

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  • Posted July 9, 2009

    Just great!

    This is a must read for young black men and women.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 19, 2012

    Hd

    Bd

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2007

    A reviewer

    It took one speech by one man at one moment frozen in time to set off a barrage of discussions on the Black community¿s progress post-civil Rights era. Bill Cosby, famed doctor of the Cosby show, stood in front of the crowd as if he was a preacher standing at a pulpit speaking truths from the Bible instead of having a congregation of the willing eagerly anticipating his every word the crowd was members of the NAACP who expected a simple congratulatory speech from the non-controversial celebrity. The event that Mr. Cosby made his infamous speech was deemed, by him, to be appropriate¿it was the commemorating the 15th anniversary of the Brown vs. the Board of Education Supreme Court ruling (this ruling prompted the eventual integration of public schools across America¿making the ¿separate but equal¿ policy unconstitutional). Irregardless of how you felt about Cosby¿s speech, you have to admit that it took immense courage on his part to risk his reputation and long-standing alliances (both political and social) to draw from his wisdom that he has gained over the years as an actor, activist and as a black man. The author, Juan Williams, of ¿Enough¿.¿, is an accomplished commentator (known from his correspondent work on NPR and Fox News) exceptionally delved into Mr. Cosby¿s argument about the downturn and complacency of the Black community after the Civil Rights Movement. He took each hard-hitting point of Bill Cosby¿s speech such as the lack of importance on education leading to increased drop-out rates, social failures as result of deteriorating family cohesion, the long-term effects of criminal elements within neighborhood of all economies¿especially poorer areas, lack of credible leadership to further carry-on the torch of the movement, cyclical poverty effecting the economic wealth of the community, and the ill-conceived plea to seek reparations from the federal government for the crimes against our ancestors. Mr. William¿s approach to analyzing Bill Cosby¿s argument for change was reminiscent of a college professor that taught one of my ¿art of argument logic¿ courses¿he presented a theory, dissected it, built it back up, presented opposing views and brought it all full circle! As I read this book, I realized that it was justified for Cosby (or anyone else) to point out the shortcomings within the black community to invoke change. Why should we continue to go on with our lives being disillusioned? Everything is not okay! Cosby¿s speech is simply a rally call to everyone, in particular, those that will take heed to his battle cry. We are not at war with this mystical force out there to get black folks (aka ¿the man¿), we are at war with ¿crabs in the bucket¿ weighing down on the community making it appear to the world that we are a community who continues to fail whether in education, economic advancement and social imagery. I know that Cosby wasn¿t speaking to everyone¿not all blacks are dropping out of school! Not all blacks are unaware of the sacrifices that our ancestors went through so that we can enjoy the freedoms that we have today! Not all blacks are accepting of the negative images and buffoonery that is in the media! Not all blacks are accepting of anything that sets us back to a period prior to the civil rights movement! People within the Black community should not dismiss Bill Cosby as just some old, rich man with nothing better to do than to nitpick at the ¿wrongs of the young generation¿. His speech had validity and needed to be heard and what better venue than at event celebrating a freedom that some black people take for granted¿the right to an equal opportunity to a quality education under the eyes of the law.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 18, 2007

    My Intuitive Praise & Critique

    I have yet to buy and read the book. So I trepidate here in offer a pre-opinion, informed only by my reading of the reviews. I sense the book has some useful insights about how 35 million blacks '12%'out of 300 million Americans can solve some, many, if not all of the major challenges we experience. This is my intuitive praise -- for who can argue with self-help and personal responsibility! However, self-help and personal responsibility are not original thoughts in American history -- for any discriminated against group of any race, including blacks. And blacks have, indeed, adopted and implemented self-help and personal responsibility values, individual practices, group practices, and institutional practices and continue to. We have also held white America personally responsible 'as individuals, groups, institutions, and laws' for how they as the majority in-power group adversely impact us. There's nothing self-victimizing about doing such, historically and today. So the book may be mypoic in suggesting Black America focuses too much, over-emphasizes critiques of and need for goverment help, or should I say, accountability. I also sense the book might offer an analysis and solutions that take for granted white-status quo models and values, which some if not many white have renounces in favor of more progressive models, as their way of adapting to constantly changing domestic and global dynamics. So this raises the question, what is the diverse Vision, Model, and Values being advocated by the author -- a 21st century version of the white 50s middle-class nuclear family, an extended family, a black male patriach family, a bumpie model, what? -- and for how many of the 35 mllion blacks, all, most, or some? What values -- feminist, conservative, liberal, materialistic, etc? And are these visions, models, and values supposed to be dynamic, responsive and open to change, revision, or static, absolute, capable of resisting any and all changes in society -- even those made by the majority white group society within which blacks must function/interact? If white america with all of its historical and present-day privileges, power, and wealthy cannot solve PERMANENTLY all or most of the social problems challenge its racial group 'for all whites are not middle class or rich or free from race/class, gender, and other forms of discrimination' then what are the implications of 35 million less privileged and powerful blacks expected to achieve? And this brings me to my point: What is this Vision/Model black are supposed to achieve, as a metric of us having succeeded -- and how many of us must be living, have achieved, this Vision/Model ... 50%, 60%, 70%, 90% or 100%, or this metric of success simply based on some artibutary parity measure with our white american counterparts, where what they do, what they don't do, what they achieve or don't, is always taken for granted as the benchmark? Is it not conceivable, doable, that a Vision/Model/Values could be adopted, analysis and solution wise, that isn't about following taken for granted white majority leaders, but actually leap-frogging, becoming the vanguards, creators of a new Vision, Model, Values -- one that other might want to adopt/practice. If this books suggest we follow/emulate, then have we thought about where this will take us -- off a cliff, because we presume that current models of supposed success will not eventually turn out to be historical models of negative impact disaster, where history repeates itself. For why else would whites as a privileged, powerful, group renounce some values and adopt new ones, renounce some models and adopt new ones -- as their way of ADAPTING to CONSTANT CHANGE. I also plan to read the following books which may provide some insights/potential solutions to Black America's challenges: The State of Black America 2007 American Families: A Multicultural Reader Way We Never Were: American Families and the Nostalgia Trap Marriage, a H

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 15, 2006

    Amen

    Amen to everything that was written!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 3, 2007

    The title says it all

    The author leads with Bill Cosby's remarks before a celebration 50 years after Brown vs Board of Education which started the process of ending segregated public schools. Cosby surprised his audience with his comments and continued his arguments after the initial speech. Juan Williams carries on the arguments brought up with his point of view and what should be done in the black community. I had enough about 2/3 of the way through the book in agreeing with the author's comments and suggestion for the black community. He uses stinging labels for those in the black community who take advantage of others dependent on government handouts and assistance calling them 'poverty pimps' . If you don't already agree with Bill Cosby's view, you are not going to read the book. Those that agree can read selected chapters about school drop-outs, marriage/out-wedlock births, crime, drugs, etc. to understand the lack of efforts by blacks to do more for themselves.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 26, 2006

    A Thought-Provoking Critique of Black Leadership

    Enough is a thought-provoking book designed to challenge accepted views of victimization proposed by many black leaders and popular culture today. I would highly recommend this book to scholars, teachers, students, and anyone with a general interest in contemporary black politics. Williams¿ inspiration for this book was Bill Cosby¿s controversial speech (commonly referred to as the Pound Cake Speech) given in Washington¿s Constitutional Hall, 2004, to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education. He credits Cosby as a catalyst for a new era in civil rights, by challenging the accepted role of victimization characterized by some of today¿s black leaders. Williams¿ criticizes this point-of-view as rhetorical, self-defeating ideology which in many cases has been abused as a means of political self-gain by the likes of Al Sharpton and Jessie Jackson. Consequently, this role of oppression has been a major cause of stagnation for many (especially poor) African-Americans to compete in a competitive, educated society alongside their ethnic counterparts. Readers will find startling statistics on a wide range of categories from high school dropout rates, to poverty rates among blacks. These figures are often presented in historical contexts which gives readers an interesting look at how some aspects of African-American life have actually become worse. One glaring example Williams points to is the breakdown in the black family structure over the past years. The number of black children raised in houses with both parents was 75 percent in 1940 compared to 33 percent in 1990. Contrary to some of these portentous facts, Enough highlights some of the strides made over the years, including a growing black middle-class, higher literacy rates, and a growing number of blacks with college degrees. In the final chapter, Williams lays out proposals for change which some readers may find too simplistic. However, Williams supporting Cosby¿s view, argues complex solutions aren¿t needed for problems that require common sense. Enough advocates progress through autonomy, instead of the exclusive government intervention. My only gripe with Enough is that it lacks an appendix to organize the abundance of data which would be extremely helpful if organized into a table. I hope the publisher¿s consider an expanded addition to include a matrix of these statistics.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 15, 2006

    It has to be said...

    Juan Williams is not playing! He is telling the truth and its one that is hard to face and hurts like hell. Please read this book, then pass it on to a friend, family memeber, co-worker and anybody else.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 12, 2006

    Placing blame on poor African Americans

    I find it hard to believe that if any college professor in the field of sociology, psychology, criminal justice, or law would even consider this book as information or factual, due to the contents of the writer's facts are not supported with notes. This book is just another opinionated documentation that is trying to link societies problems to poor African Americans. Education is a helpful tool for job placement, but networking, opportunity, and social justice is the absolute key to success. The writer does not mention the affects of mental illness or the exploration of legal substances that effects the enviornoment of the location of the poor. It is easy to point a finger at the problem and to hold forums to discuss problems, but to fight social injustice that is influence by the rich, the government, the media, and public policy is something that Bill Cosby or Juan Williams would not challenge. Question is Bill Cosby's success linked to a great education from a university or is his success a reward for a god given talent? It seems that the writer of this book believes that, if every African American achieve a college education, becomes rich or well to do, and disassociate oneself of being African American, then all of societies problems will fade away. I do support Bill Cosby for mentioning the problems in the black community, but constant finger pointing and scrutinizing poor African Americans will not resolve the problems of the black community. This book should not be used as a key for development of a foundation that is needed in the black community. Juan Williams is correct by all means that Jesse Jackson is not a good example of leadership.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 1, 2006

    A breath of fresh air.

    That's what Donna Brazile says about this book and when she, Thomas Sowell and John McWhorter agree that this is an important book on race relations in America today, it is a must read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 31, 2006

    Finally, I have found my voice.

    This book was amazing in its blunt, hard-pill-to-swallow, but so true insights into what is truly ailing African-Americans, especially poor young blacks today. I am one of those middle-class blacks trying to reach back into the poor black community working with adolescent-aged kids and I see the effects of a culture of poverty so entrenched and young minds so wrapped around the popular 'thug life' and a total disdain for any thing resembling 'an educated Negro' as Mr. Williams describes in this book, that it makes one wanna holler ENOUGH! This book is a cry to anyone who loves black folks and is desperately seeking ways to make the American Dream not just a reality for our people but a certainty. Let's stop debating about how we got in this mess and take a page from the self-determination strategies of our ancestors to get out of it. Read this book now!!!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 13, 2006

    hit it right on the nail

    This books proves that the NAACP,Rainbow Push are really out dated and out of touch with mainstream black America and that Bill Cosby said what he said is out of frustration and that it should be a wake up call for us all.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 15, 2006

    Excellent!

    As a Black African who came to US for college education. I vowed that my kids will not grow up in America. Not because of racism but due to the defeatist mindset I see within the Black community. Instead of people taking responsible for their actions people lay the blame on colour. Even worse is the fact that no one besides Bill (and before Mr William's book) had the guts or will i say the vision to speak out. There is more problem within us than from the outside. This book goes to proffer solutions. I highly recommend

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 8, 2006

    Juan hits the nail on the head

    Juan has entered the great modern debate on Black America and has taken it to a new, and very professional level. Now that civil liberties have been won, how will they be exercised by young Blacks? He provides insightful observations and backs them up with statistics that are easy to understand and shocking to see. This book should be required reading for all high school freshmen of any race. The insights, while directed at Black Americans, are applicable to all of us. Juan did not shy away from giving his informed opinions of what needs to be done to turn the tide.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 10, 2006

    All the problems and the answers

    This happens to vocalize what I have been thinking for years about african americans (which I am), but it takes it a step further and gives us solutions. I think that this book should be a manidtory read for all young black people who want to do something with there lives.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 6, 2006

    Juan Williams is right on target

    Excellant book. Factual and well researched. He offers good solutions on how we can improve our conditions. They are not new nor are they impossible. As he and Bill Cosby are saying 'enough is enough', we need to stand up and be responsible and accountable. The poor (blacks in particular) cannot afford to continue to follow blindly and just let our so-called 'black leaders' tell us what to believe, say, or how to vote.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 18, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted May 14, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted October 19, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

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