Thomas Sowel Quotes

Empirical evidence strongly indicates that racial discrimination tends to be greater when the costs are lower and lower when the costs are greater. -- P. 142

Much of the cultural pattern of Southern rednecks became the cultural heritage of Southern blacks, more so than survivals of African cultures, with which they had not been in contact for centuries...Moreover, such cultural traits followed blacks out of the Southern countrysides and into the urban ghettos- North and South- where many settled. The very way of talking, later to be christened 'black English,' closely followed the dialects brought over from those parts of Britain from which many white Southerners came. -- P. 27

Nevertheless, most Americans earn their livings by renting their time and talents-and live much better than peoples in many other countries where most adults own their own land and work only for themselves. -- P. 127

One third of free colored families in New Orleans owned slaves and 3,000 'free persons of color' joined the Confederate army during the Civil War. Charleston, another exception, had many slave-owning 'free persons of color' from the British West Indies and Santo Domingo. -- P. 161

-hundreds of black chemists were employed in private industry before World War II, when not a single major university had a black professor of chemistry. -- P. 123

It is difficult to survey the history of racial or ethnic relations without being appalled by the inhumanity, brutality, and viciousness of it all. But there are no more futile or dangerous efforts than attempts to redress the wrongs of history. . . This may be frustrating and galling, but that is no justification for taking out those frustrations on living human beings-or for generating new strife by creating privileges for those who are contemporary reminders of historical guilt. -- P. 251

-sweeping Jim Crow laws were used in the South to keep blacks 'in their place' precisely because of the futility of trying to do so in a competitive market. -- P. 112

On issue after issue, the morally self anointed visionaries have for centuries argued as if no honest disagreement were possible, as if those who opposed them were not merely in error but in sin. -- P. 103

In reality, the proportion of women in the professions and other higher level positions was greater during the first decades of the twentieth century than in the middle of the twentieth century- and all of this was before either anti-discrimination laws or the rise of the feminist movement. -- P. 58

The average American‘s annual income could buy everything the average Japanese annual income buys and still have thousands of dollars left over. Therefore the average American has a higher standard of living than the average Japanese. Yet statistics based on official exchange rates show the average Japanese earning thousands of dollars more than the average American, leaving the false impression that the Japanese are more prosperous than Americans. -- P. 221

Among Americans in 1980, 31 percent of all black first-born children were born to teenage mothers, compared to only 12 percent among whites. In both races, children born to teenage mothers tended to have lower I.Q.‘s. -- P. 370

-whether judgments or actions toward particular groups are favorable or unfavorable, these actions cannot be automatically equated with prejudgments. Indeed, it is a sweeping prejudgment to do so, especially when those who attribute prejudice to others often have less direct knowledge of the groups in question at the times in question, than those who made the favorable or unfavorable judgments. -- P. 164

A child raised in a home where physical prowess is valued more than intellectual prowess is unlikely to have the same goals and priorities as a child raised in a home where the reverse is true. -- P. 146

Anyone who saw East Berlin and West Berlin during the years when communism prevailed in the eastern part of the city and a market economy in the rest of it could not help noticing the sharp contrast between the prosperity of West Berlin and the poverty in East Berlin. -- P. 118

Among individuals who are actively in the labor force, only 5 percent of those who were in the bottom 20 percent in income in 1975 were still there in 1991, compared to 29 percent of those in the bottom quintile in 1975 who had risen to the top quintile by 1991. -- P. 146

Over the past two decades, in every field surveyed by the Council of Graduate Schools, the proportion of graduate degrees in the United States going to Americans has declined. -- P. 269

Some people consider it a valid criticism of corporations that they are 'just in the business to make profits.' By this kind of reasoning, workers are just working to earn their pay. -- P. 332

The degree of freedom has been correlated with the rate of economic growth for nations in general. -- P. 173

Even in the absence of differences in toil or reward, the seeming conjuring of wealth out of thin air, apparently by 'overcharging' others or making them pay back more money than was lent, has been seen as parasitic activity, rather than as a contribution to the well- being of the community. -- P. 70

-there are two competing sets of people who wish to use the same resources in different ways. Property rights allow this competition to take place in the marketplace, while court-sanctioned abridgements of property rights allow the competition to take place through a political process in which only one set of competitors can vote. -- P. 104