How did Buchanan win this illustrious honor? With tripe like this:
First, America has been the best country on earth for black folks. It was here that 600,000 black people, brought from Africa in slave ships, grew into a community of 40 million, were introduced to Christian salvation, and reached the greatest levels of freedom and prosperity blacks have ever known.
Wright ought to go down on his knees and thank God he is an American.
Yes, blacks should be so grateful that they were stolen from their native land, crammed into galleys, shipped across the ocean with survival rates of around 50%, enslaved for hundreds of years, and afterwards legally disfranchised and discriminated against, while all the while whites fortified their racist institutions with Bible verses and scientific "proofs" that all testified to the natural inferiority of black people. Blacks should be grateful for all this because, after all, now they're (mostly) Christian! And they've achieved the greatest levels of freedom blacks have ever known--why, only 1 in 15 black men over 18 are in prison in the US, and only 1 in 9 black men ages 20-34. Blacks could never experience that in any other country! (The study on prison populations itself is here, in PDF format)
But wait, Pat's not done yet!
Second, no people anywhere has done more to lift up blacks than white Americans. Untold trillions have been spent since the '60s on welfare, food stamps, rent supplements, Section 8 housing, Pell grants, student loans, legal services, Medicaid, Earned Income Tax Credits and poverty programs designed to bring the African-American community into the mainstream.
Governments, businesses and colleges have engaged in discrimination against white folks - with affirmative action, contract set-asides and quotas -- to advance black applicants over white applicants.
Churches, foundations, civic groups, schools and individuals all over America have donated time and money to support soup kitchens, adult education, day care, retirement and nursing homes for blacks.
We hear the grievances. Where is the gratitude?
Consider this scenario: a friend of yours agrees to house-sit for you while you're enjoying a week-long vacation. When you get back, nicely tanned and rested, you walk up the lawn and notice that the windows on the front of your house are broken. Fearing that there was a break-in, you rush into the house, prepared to take note of what was stolen when you are struck by the sight before your eyes. Trash has been strewn all over your floor; acrid stains dot your walls, with some splatters even hitting the ceiling; small chunks of your furniture have been hacked off, and lie embedded in the carpet; your favorite plant is withered almost to the point of death; and it seems your cat, lacking a litter pan, decided to relieve itself on the pile of mail that was discarded next to the door. When confronted, your friend admits that the mess you returned home to was all his doing, and he reluctantly agrees to pay to replace the broken window.
When you next see him, you complain about how your foyer still reeks of cat urine, and your friend snarls, "I hear the grievances. Where's the gratitude?"
The simple fact of the matter is that programs like affirmative action would not be necessary in a country that didn't have the institutionalized racism of the United States. It is good that a portion of society wants to make amends for what we did in the past, but why ought anyone fall to their knees in gratitude at someone who is trying--and not even trying very hard--to fix what he did to you in the first place?
Of course, conservatives like Buchanan have been doing their damnedest to dismantle all these programs since... well, the '80s, at best, and probably earlier. Hell, they were opposed to the things existing at all, braying that blacks should be grateful they were brought to this country and made into Christians (gee, where have we heard that before?). But now that it's convenient, Pat want to parade them around as "our" accomplishments, and those uppity negroes should be damn grateful for what "we" do for them!
Secondly, note what he said: "no people anywhere has done more to lift up blacks than white Americans." To Buchanan's mind, programs like affirmative action are not attempts to undo the horrible damage that white America inflicted on black America. No, Pat believes that blacks are impoverished, criminal, stupid, and lazy by nature, and all these are attempts by whites to elevate blacks above their "natural" status.
But hey, at least they're not back in Africa.