It's important to recognize the fact that Black families often end up stuck with a low income even when they do all the things conservatives would like, because it helps undercut the widespread delusion that, despite decades of entrenched institutional racism in this country, the only thing the Black community lacks for is effort.

It should also make writers like Lowry a bit more hesitant to bring up the success sequence as the key to all of Black America's woes. Because, in the end, it doesn't really guarantee success.