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True. The jobless numbers are stark: nationwide, 9.1; whites, 8 percent; blacks, 16.7 percent.

But it’s also true that Americans will not be positioned to resurrect themselves jobs-wise if we let racial or social unrest tear asunder the red, white and blue.

It’s important that Mr. West, the lone Republican, continue to sit at the Black Caucus table.

It’s also important that every time racial and ethnic slurs are spouted by American leaders that they are immediately condemned.

Sure, the jobless rate has dug its heels into black America, but that’s always been the case.

But solutions, not racial-bating rhetoric, are what’s needed.

And frankly, my fellow Americans, neither the Republicans nor the Democrats has revealed a plan to flip the jobless script.

That is why red-blooded Americans need to stiffen their backbones, open their eyes and readjust their antenna.

Race-baiting rhetoric turns the red, white and blue black and blue, and race-based policies exacerbate labor pains.

So pay attention midweek to both President Obama’s jobs plan and the Republicans’ response.

If their partisan fingers get a workout on their respective bully pulpits, don’t be surprised because their comfort zone lies in rewriting sermons about job training (for Democrats) and cutting the deficit (for Republicans).

What Americans want is common ground.

Indeed, acknowledging common ground would represent the breakthrough needed to put Americans back to work.

Heads up: D.C. Council Chairman Kwame R. Brown will hold a roundtable on middle schools Wednesday morning. Parents and other stakeholders should speak out, as the chairman is on record as saying this broken bridge will be fixed.

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