Airing Black America's "Dirty Laundry"?
Judge Marvin Arrington has had it.
(CBS) Jesse Jackson set off a furor recently on a very sensitive issue, when he accused Barack Obama of "talking down to black people." African Americans have been debating for years on how tough to be on young black men. But as CBS News correspondent Mark Strassmann reports, the debate is over for one judge in Atlanta. He's decided to be tough enough to change lives.
He says he's tired of seeing the same people in his Atlanta courtroom, over and over.
"People are shooting, robbing people, dropping out of school," Arrington laments.
Judge Arrington is offended -- and embarrassed.
"Ninety percent of you are African Americans," he says to a courtroom packed with young black men.
It's a racial scolding. It's blunt, public and controversial.
"I wonder sometimes what in the world Dr. King and all them died for," he says.
In black America, a private family conversation about what's wrong, has gone public, and turned bitter. Take for example civil rights leader Jesse Jackson's reaction to Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama's Father's Day speech, in which the candidate chided young black men for being absentee fathers.
"What in the world is going on? Why cannot we stop and get it right?" Arrington said in an interview with Strassmann.
In an unguarded moment this week, Jackson was clearly furious at Obama.
"Too many fathers are also missing, too many fathers are M.I.A.. Too many fathers are AWOL," Obama said last month.
"I'd like to cut his n--ts off," Jackson fumed.
Not Arrington. He thinks the tough-love is long overdue. As a kid, Arrington was a bit of a thug, the sort of kid he often sees in court. Family and teachers set him straight.
"I was just hanging out being one of the boys," Arrington told Strassmann "And one day the light clicked on. I didn't want to be one of the boys."