About Rationally Speaking

Rationally Speaking is a blog maintained by Prof. Massimo Pigliucci, a philosopher at the City University of New York. The blog reflects the Enlightenment figure Marquis de Condorcet's idea of what a public intellectual (yes, we know, that's such a bad word) ought to be: someone who devotes himself to "the tracking down of prejudices in the hiding places where priests, the schools, the government, and all long-established institutions had gathered and protected them." You're welcome. Please notice that the contents of this blog can be reprinted under the standard Creative Commons license.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Even in aid to Katrina's victims race and cultural differences are obvious

As Michael Brick of the New York Times recently reported, the racial and class divide exposed so obviously by the aftermath of Katrina (but wasn't it way obvious before?) is evident even in the organization of the relief efforts.

Take the various musical events that have been organized to raise funds for the victims of the hurricane. We've got one by Country Music Television (for mostly white, blue collar audiences), one organized by Michael Jackson (!!), enlisting only black performers, and one put together by Gloria Estefan, mostly with Hispanic stars.

Can't we overcome the damn racial divide even when it comes to do fund raising through the arts, a medium which is supposed to bring all of us together? Well, we can, as the PBS-sponsored show at the Lincoln Center (organized by Wynton Marsalis) clearly shows. Then again, who in this country watches PBS?

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