Children of Privilege

By Matt Rooney | The Save Jersey Blog

Cory Booker did his best to contribute to this past week’s artificially-generated Trayvon Martin/Zimmerman verdict hysteria, Save Jerseyans. Very helpful! He even took the time to visit CNN (because it’s not like there’s anything going on in Newark) so that he could slobber all lover President Obama’s post-verdict presser:


Hmmm… to which experiences are you referring, Cory? Your childhood makes mine — and those of most Save Jersey readers — resemble something out of Oliver Twist…

For those who don’t know much about Newark’s mayor part-time tweeter before he took on Sharpe James, Booker grew up in the upper middle class bedroom community of Harrington Park where the median household income is $115,875. His father, Cary Alfred Booker, was one of IBM’s first black executives. His privileged upbringing (combined with some hard work in the library, of course) led to an undergraduate degree from Stanford, a Rhodes Scholarship through Oxford and a juris doctorate from Yale.

Unlike the Mayor and his party, I would never begrudge anyone else’s success or good fortune provided it’s not the product of criminality. That’s the conservative difference. But let’s be honest: America’s been pretty damn good to Cory Booker, Save Jerseyans, as it’s been to President Obama whose background wasn’t half as pleasant as Mayor Booker’s early years. Unfortunately for everyone within earshot of this font of demagoguery, good fortune doesn’t necessarily lend itself to fostering gratitude.

The charismatic young man from Harrington Park who’s never run a business (and whose closest brush with poverty was living on food stamps and videotapping it for a week) can somehow go on television with a straight face and clear conscience to speak of his country as if it hasn’t advanced sociologically beyond the 1950s.

He’s right in one respect: for the millions of black youths who languish in a failed education monopoly defended by Democrats and their union allies, Newark included, our cities are in WORSE shape and far more segregated than they were 60+ years ago. The question CNN’s anchor should’ve asked during the interview posted above is what Mayor Booker is doing to address the last great vestige of government-enforced inequality other than talk about it… when there isn’t an ongoing Democrat primary…

Put another way: why don’t Cory Booker and Barack Obama believe other minority children should deserve the privileges which they enjoyed?

Matt Rooney
About Matt Rooney 8495 Articles
MATT ROONEY is's founder and editor-in-chief, a practicing New Jersey attorney, and the host of 'The Matt Rooney Show' on 1210 WPHT every Sunday evening from 7-10PM EST.


  1. @Justin There´s always going to be discrimination, intolerance and other forms of ignorance in our world because that´s human nature. Humans are flawed creatures. All that matters from a public policy perspective is whether we live in a country where individuals have the opportunity to overcome it. Obama and Booker are living proof that those obstacles are no longer insurmountable in America. Far from it. To the extent legal/government-enshrined obstacles still exist, Democrat politicians do their best to reinforce them (i.e. the education system).

  2. Matt, correct…they will ALWAYS be present, as part of the human condition. The sooner it is realized that tons of money, a gazillion programs and leaders who demand the bar practically touch the grounds are NOT working too well and that hard work, sacrifice and dedication can get you places, the lot of many will improve, But it can´t happen yesterday, which seems to be the prevailing thought.

  3. Doesn´t mean that any discrimination either Obama or Booker faced growing up becomes invalid by default, Matt. Just because they´ve become successful and became better people in spite of it all doesn´t mean it didn´t hurt.

    Furthermore, you´d probably be better off not commenting on a form of discrimination and prejudice that you know nothing about and you´ll never have to face or cope with on a personal level in your lifetime.

  4. @Justin Trying to disqualify an opinion solely by attacking the person who holds it rather than engage on substance? Never a good tactic. When my great grandfather came here from Italy, he got beat up every day by the Irish kids. Before that, my Irish ancestors faced "Irish need not apply" signs in Philly shop windows. And so what? They found a way to succeed WITHOUT government safety nets, mass protests and the Rev. Jesse Jackson. Again, our challenge (from a public policy perspective) is to avoid demagoguery and analyze why today´s American minority groups aren´t, generally speaking, moving up the social mobility ladder in greater numbers like those before them. The education system is the biggest obvious culprit. But liberals never want to discuss that… demagoguery is much easier!

  5. Commenting on a discrimination you know nothing about and will never face disqualifies you immediately, period, whether you want to accept that or not. Just because you had relatives who were strong and determined enough to overcome bigotry in their lifetime (as did mine) doesn´t mean that organizing groups to combat bigotry or supporting government initiatives to combat it is wrong.

    Everyone, Italian, Irish, German and Russian and Jewish alike dealt with discrimination when they came here. That said, how many of them were united in their hatred of blacks and oppressed them far worse than they themselves were ever oppressed back then?


  7. Unless you know what Cory Booker or his family went through, do not assume he has not faced discrimination. That is ridiculous to say that, as if in NJ there is none. I am a Republican but I will vote for him over the do nothings that are running against him.

  8. @Liz Again… what does it matter? And more importantly, identify for me what he´s actually done for Newark? I have this conversation daily and no one can give me an answer.

  9. everyone has faced discrimination in this Country. Italians, the Jews, Polish People and so on. Blacks need to stop the bullshit and demand decent educations and jobs from the LIBERAL IDIOTS WHO ARE RUNNING THIS COUNTRY. booker will only drive New Jersey deeper in the hole if he runs as governor.

  10. Newark was been broken for at the very least, five decades. Booker did what he could in the face of the old James machine still having a foothold on the city council. Furthermore, name one significant change Lonegan made in Bogota. Namely, in back of all his talk on cutting taxes, a single tax he ever cut in three terms as Mayor. Answer: NONE. The only reputation Steve Steven Lonegan had amassed in New Jersey (among those who actually know who he is) is one of being a nasty, abrasive, mean spirited sonofabitch.

    Funny thing is, Matt knows this. Four years ago when he ran against Gov. Christie, Matt gave me carte Blanche on the Save Jersey blog to rip into Lonegan like there was no tomorrow. Matt knows how horrible a human being Steve Lonegan is and four years later is happy to support him? Matt, I know you´re a reasonable guy. Do you honestly think for one minute that Lonegan is any less of a douchebag than he was four years ago? Is he going to get your support by default just because he has an (R) next to his name?

    I hope for one, that the Gov. sees fit to not get involved and if he does, endorses Booker since they´re friends and multiple democrats are endorsing the Gov. and one good turn deserves another.

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