Born in 1937, Norris Shelton has lived his life in undeserved discrimination. As an independent entrepreneur, time and again, he has suffered the debilitating effects of prejudice and favoritism in the business world. Fortunately, he learned to survive, and he has many lessons to share. Recognizing and directly addressing the utter unfairness in personal interaction that permeates America and the negative effect bigotry has on all of those sharing his dark-skinned, but truly American-born heritage, Shelton set out to unravel the mystery of why his people have so long tolerated being treated with less dignity and respect when compared to other ethnic groups— “in our own country.”
Sheldon’s life experiences include his “wrong side of the tracks” and pre-civil rights childhood, which he chronicles in his book, Alley Rat. He shares his personal struggles with America’s systemic injustice, the downside of becoming rich without having a firm anchor in your own sense of self, and the incredible relationships he built across racial lines in his books Crabs in a Barrel and Black Name, White Game.
Finally, Shelton’s experiences coalesce into a clear understanding of , America’s contribution to the woes of what he calls Descendants of American Slaves, and its liabilities if we fail to correct the situation. Shelton shares his first-hand observations and his prescription for change in his books, Gatekeepers, America’s Little Black Book, and American Slaves, Inc. Renaissance Plan: The Next Steps Forward.