PLEDGE NOW
Charles Murray On White America

America’s coming apart around money and morals, says Charles Murray. He’s sparked a great debate about why. We’ll hear it.

Coming Apart: The State of White America, 1960-2010 (Random House)

Coming Apart: The State of White America, 1960-2010 (Random House)

Libertarian lightning rod Charles Murray knows how to whip up a big American debate.  His last time out was with “The Bell Curve” and an argument that IQ was destiny and poor Americans were going down.  Stephen Jay Gould called it “anachronistic social Darwinism.”

This time, Murray says America has broken into two worlds, elites and underclass.  The underclass has lost the “founding virtues” of faith, family, work.  Elites are to blame.  Critics say let’s just get some jobs for people.  Some opportunity.

This hour, On Point: the debate over America coming apart.

-Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Charles Murray, a senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, he’s the author of Coming Apart: The State of White America, 1960-2010. You can find an excerpt here.

Joan Walsh, editor-at-large at Salon.com. You can find her review of Coming Apart here.

From Tom’s Reading List

The Wall Street Journal “The ideal of an ‘American way of life’ is fading as the working class falls further away from institutions like marriage and religion and the upper class becomes more isolated. Charles Murray on what’s cleaving America, and why.”

The New York Times “When Charles Murray and Richard J. Herrnstein’s book “The Bell Curve” appeared in 1994, it was denounced by social scientists, liberal pundits and a little-known Chicago civil-rights lawyer named Barack Obama, who in a commentary on NPR accused the authors of calculating that “white America is ready for a return to good old-fashioned racism as long as it’s artfully packaged.”

The New Republic “As Murray sees it, the working class has been hurt less by economic shifts that have made it hard for its members—particularly the male ones—to earn a good living than it has by a lamentable decline in industriousness and social values brought on by the upheavals of the 1960s. “

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
ONPOINT
TODAY
Sep 4, 2015
A paramilitary police officer carries the lifeless body of a migrant child after a number of migrants died and a smaller number were reported missing after boats carrying them to the Greek island of Kos capsized, near the Turkish resort of Bodrum early Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2015. (DHA/AP)

Migrant crisis in Europe. The Iran deal, cleared. A Kentucky clerk and gay marriage. Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

Sep 4, 2015
Serena Williams reacts after winning a point against Kiki Bertens, of the Netherlands, during the second round of the U.S. Open tennis tournament, Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2015. (Charles Krupa/AP)

Serena Williams. The undisputed queen of tennis, and what she’s meant in sports and beyond.

RECENT
SHOWS
Sep 4, 2015
Serena Williams reacts after winning a point against Kiki Bertens, of the Netherlands, during the second round of the U.S. Open tennis tournament, Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2015. (Charles Krupa/AP)

Serena Williams. The undisputed queen of tennis, and what she’s meant in sports and beyond.

 
Sep 4, 2015
A paramilitary police officer carries the lifeless body of a migrant child after a number of migrants died and a smaller number were reported missing after boats carrying them to the Greek island of Kos capsized, near the Turkish resort of Bodrum early Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2015. (DHA/AP)

Migrant crisis in Europe. The Iran deal, cleared. A Kentucky clerk and gay marriage. Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
Martin O’Malley On ‘Rigged’ Democratic Debates
Wednesday, Sep 2, 2015

Former Baltimore mayor and Democratic Maryland governor Martin O’Malley has single digits in the polls in Iowa but is out there swinging. He joined host Tom Ashbrook on Wednesday.

More »
3 Comments
 
Our Week In The Web: August 28, 2015
Friday, Aug 28, 2015

You say #hashtag, we say, #forwhat? That, plus Usain Bolt and the ominous lurking Segway cameraman. Friday!

More »
Comment
 
Our Week In The Web: August 21, 2015
Friday, Aug 21, 2015

Do you even click? (And other reflections on link sharing and web commenting).

More »
6 Comments