On a friend's recommendation, I've been reading this book called "Generations: The History of America's Future, 1584 to 2069" by William Strauss and Neil Howe. This book predicted Bill Cosby's rant!

These guys have constructed a theory of America based on a limited set of generational types which repeat in cycles. Their theory is that this repeating cycle of generations and how one type of generation interacts with others has certain common themes, allowing them to predict the future, at least in broad thematic brushes.

The book was written in 1991 and claims there will be a "Crisis of 2020" facing the nation along the same order of magnitude as Pearl Harbor (War on Terror? Bird Flu? Bird flu on terror???). It's just very interesting to read, and while they don't focus on black Americans, this quote form page 399 hit me. In listening to Sharpton's speech at Rosa Parks's funeral and Cosby's rant, I can say that these fellas predicted it.

Here's the quote:
In inner cities, Boomer civic and religious leaders will reestablish moral principles and police the world of youth activities with far greater attention to ends than means. Sharing the Boom cult of community, the midlife black elite will assert moral leadership in troubled neighborhoods that (in there view) need them. Inner-city religious leaders will become sharply intolerant of youth misbehavior. The black Boom elite will back away from procedural mechanisms like affirmative action--and will instead force younger people to build "character" and accept more responsilibity for their own condition. When black Boomers call attemton to white racism, their purpose will not be to galvanize the white establishment to act, but rather to galvanize the black community to act on its own.

Click on the book image if you want to check it out.