Piecemeal measures won't work.
Almost fifty years later historians and scholars look at the Kerner Commission Report as another reminder of how much is still unchanged and needs changing to make the promises of American democracy work for all. Division is not inevitable. When will we hear and heed and act?
Here we are today, almost half a century later, and it remains as true now as it was in 1967 that "our nation is moving toward two societies, one black, one white -- separate and unequal." When will we learn?
If it's like other famous commission reports, yes.
Given the recent unrest in Ferguson and Baltimore, it's time to reignite the debate: Was the Kerner Commission prediction accurate: Have we become "two societies... separate and unequal?"
It would be little surprise if poverty, inequality, injustice, and feelings of hopelessness were identified as the root causes of the current state of race relations in our communities. But rather than speculate or argue over the issue, let's have a national discussion, transparent and honest, led by the president himself.
Whether you are a Hollywood executive, a corporate sponsor, a progressive Police Chief, or a common Jane or Joe that wants to see a less divided society, we will all play a role in creating a new and better future. If we choose to cast ourselves in that role.
Since the shooting and killing of Michael Brown in Ferguson by a police officer and other tragic incidents between African Americans and police in face-to-face encounters and the subsequent protests, a national dialogue on race relations has begun once again.
If we having a real conversation then we must have one that examines the deep racial anxiety in this country, an anxiety not only stoked by strategic political manipulation, but by fear of rapidly changing demographics, and a rapidly changing world.
Can we as a society cut through the vail and begin to know and understand those different from ourselves, to have the ability to walk in the shoes of another, to break down these "us" versus "them" notions that separate?