Would it kill Dyson to acknowledge there is a serious problem within the black community and not everything is because of racism?
MICHAEL ERIC DYSON: There’s no question that the overweighting of white intention suggests that the exclusive matter of deciding a moral consequence or legal effect of a particular act depends upon what the white person intended and in this case, the white police officer. You know, my pastor told me when I was a child, a mosquito doesn’t intend to give you anything, it intends to extract blood, but it may give you malaria.
So there’s no one-to-one correlation between intentionality and consequentiality. What you intend to do may not be what ends up happening. White intentions are not only the problem; it’s the absolving of white culpability and responsible by referring to white intention. That’s part of the problem as Ms. [Amy] Davidson is suggesting there and I think we really have to wrestle with that…
ALEX WAGNER, MSNBC: So, Professor Dyson, how do we retrain America? I mean how — it just seems so insurmountable at times like this. I mean this is something that African-Americans have lived with since the founding of the country. So what is the beginning of the process of reversal?
DYSON: Well, you’ve got to have a bifocal approach here, don’t you? You have to look at the big picture and the cosmic kind of change you have to have which is why you talk about conversations on race, on gender, on sexual orientation. You speak about the nation’s democracy and its democratic traditions and energies.