Who are the Luckiest Jews, Blacks and Latinos?

By Dennis Prager Published on March 13, 2018

At The City College of New York in the late 1930s, my father, an Orthodox Jew, wrote his senior class thesis on anti-Semitism in America. He delineated common realities of the era, such as Jews’ admission to law firms, country clubs and colleges being denied or restricted, and various other manifestations of popular and institutional anti-Semitism.

Yet he taught his two sons — my older brother and me — to believe that we, as Americans, were the luckiest Jews in Jewish history.

With the obvious exception of Jews living in Israel, he was right. I can state this with some authority, having written a book on anti-Semitism and taught Jewish history at Brooklyn College.

Despite the existence of anti-Semites and anti-Semitism in America, American Jews are indeed among the luckiest Jews in Jewish history. Even with the re-establishment of a Jewish state in the Land of Israel, many more Israeli Jews have moved to America than American Jews have moved to Israel. This is not a reflection on Israel, which is a country with a high quality of life that is an unparalleled blessing in Jewish life; rather, it is a reflection on America and how good it is for Jews.

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Likewise, despite the existence of racists and racism in America, black Americans are among the luckiest blacks in the world. A distinguished black journalist, Keith Richburg of the Washington Post, fully acknowledged the horror and cruelties of slavery. Nevertheless, he thanked God his ancestors made it possible for him to be born and live in America, not Africa. After covering Africa for the Washington Post, Richburg put it this way in his newspaper: “Let me drop the charade and put it as simply as I can: There but for the grace of God go I.

Somewhere, sometime, maybe 400 years ago, an ancestor of mine whose name I’ll never know was shackled in leg irons, kept in a dark pit … and then put with thousands of other Africans into the crowded, filthy cargo hold of a ship for the long and treacherous journey across the Atlantic. Many of them died along the way, of disease, of hunger. But my ancestor survived … He was ripped away from his country and his family, forced into slavery somewhere in the Caribbean. Then one of his descendants somehow made it up to South Carolina, and one of those descendants, my father, made it to Detroit during the Second World War, and there I was born, 36 years ago. And if that original ancestor hadn’t been forced to make that horrific voyage, I would not have been standing there that day on the Rusumo Falls bridge, a journalist — a mere spectator — watching the bodies glide past me like river logs. … And so I thank God my ancestor made that voyage. … I empathize with Africa’s pain. I recoil in horror at the mindless waste of human life, and human potential. I salute the gallantry and dignity and sheer perseverance of the Africans. But most of all, I feel secretly glad that my ancestor made it out — because, now, I am not one of them. (italics added)

That is why millions of Africans prefer to live in America than anywhere else. That is why more than 2 million Africans immigrated to the United States in the recent past (compared with the 388,000 who came as slaves). Unlike the many Americans — black and white — who believe the leftist libel about America oppressing blacks and all other nonwhites, the millions of Africans who want to come to America know how lucky they would be to be a black in America, as do the millions who already live here. They know they are, or would be, among the luckiest blacks in the world.

And what about Latin Americans? Like American Jews and American blacks, they are among the luckiest Latinos in the world. How could they or anyone else deny this given the fact that tens of millions of Latin Americans left their families, friends, culture, language and very homes to live in America? And given the fact that tens of millions more ache to do the same? What kind of lie must a person embrace to flee to a peaceful, prosperous country whose people treat him generously and beautifully and not think he is lucky to live there?

And, finally, there are the many white Americans — people born and raised in America, many of whose ancestors also fled war, poverty and oppression in Europe — who not only deny how lucky they are to live America but also vilify the founders of America who made their blessed life possible. Their attitude transcends mere lying; it enters the realm of pathology.


Dennis Prager’s latest book, The Ten Commandments: Still the Best Moral Code, was published by Regnery. He is a nationally syndicated radio show host and creator of PragerUniversity.com.


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  • Concerned Christian

    I love the nerve of conservatives!

    The effect of slavery in Africa

    Slavery’s long effects on Africa

    The Long-Term Effects of Africa’s Slave Trades – Harvard University

    Effect of the Slave Trade on West Africa

    The slave trade’s effect on African societies

  • Stinger

    I read Keith Richburg’s excellent book on his travels in Africa. He is definitely one black person who knows his race is a thousand times better off than in their ancestral home. Even in the 1800s, when statesmen like Lincoln advocated for settlement of freed slaves in Africa, it became very obvious that few wanted to live there, and those who lived there found it abominable.

    • Concerned Christian

      In terms of Lincoln and Africans, I wonder how many of those blacks would have left if they had known that it would take another 100 years to be free? If they had known that a group called the KKK would terrorize them while the good Christian folk in America stood around and did nothing!

      Also, saying that blacks would be better off is like saying that Jews are better off that Hitler killed 6 million of them.

      After all, they did get their homeland back!

  • Concerned Christian

    So the premise of this article and for people who believe things like this, is:

    –black people who were ripped from the only home they knew.
    –who were forced to go on a long voyage where they saw millions of their brethren die.
    –who were then forced into bondage
    –who were forced to see their women raped, their children taken from them, and their brethren murdered
    –who saw their own destiny destroyed

    Means absolutely nothing!

    You are really saying that the lives of blacks was so bad in Africa that slavery in America was a better alternative. That truly is the height of arrogance.

    To act as if any benefit today, at the expense of the suffering of yesterday, is justifiable, is simply beyond comprehension.

    Keep in mind that unlike those running from Europe for religious persecution, anti-antisemitism, or famine, blacks were not looking to come to America. Europe was so bad that millions fled to come to the New World. But that wasn’t good enough. Europeans also had to destroy Native American, Asian, Middle East and African cultures as well.

    Africans, Asians, and Native Americans were minding their own business. But thank God for the people that were smart enough to exploit a good thing when they saw it.

    As we see conflicts in Asia, the Middle east, and Africa, the good news is that for those whose lives are being destroyed, two to four hounded years from now, life will be better.

    Thank you for your sacrifice!

Jesus, ‘Thou Art Fairer Than the Children of Men’
Charles Spurgeon
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