Debt hurt minority homeownership. (Getty Images)

Michelle Singletary, in her Washington Post/Bloomberg News column, argues that homeowners saddled with heavy debt helped drive the foreclosure glut in the black community. 

"Life for me ain't been no crystal stair."

That's the defining line in Langston Hughes's poem "Mother to Son."

It's about a mother advising her son to keep climbing, even when the steps have tacks, splinters and broken boards. Hughes's mother tells her son to not turn back. You may fall, she says, but keep "a-climbin' on."

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That's what I want to tell those families, who are disproportionately people of color, who put too much of their faith and money in the American dream of owning a home.

A new report from the Pew Research Center found that the housing bubble that burst and the recession that followed took a far greater toll on the wealth of minorities than whites.

Read Michelle Singletary’s complete column at the Washington Post/Bloomberg News.