As Black people in America, we have an obligation not only to those who have sacrificed before us, but to those who come after us to both honor what was given up and to provide more to those who are next.
As we evolve and progress in this country we come to a very interesting point in our history as the past few years have offered evidence both to the affirmative and negative of whether racism still exists. As Barack Obama stands with a legitimate chance to become President of the United States, we commemorate the 3 year anniversary of katrina, and the federal government’s lack of response.
As citizens who have been treated as second class for so long, and often seeing a different America than the one broadcast around the world, we take different stances on how we view this nation. Some see America as a nation rife with hypocrisy, where you can pay taxes and work as hard as you can and still get harassed by police, live in violence plagued neighborhoods, and earn less for the same jobs while having less opportunity than our White counterparts.
Others see the glass as half full. They recognize the gains that Blacks have made in the 43 or so years since the Voting Rights Act of 1965 (the true end of slavery and admission to majority citizenship). They acknowledge the gains of People like Dick Parsons and Kenneth Chenault, Colin Powell and Condoleeza Rice, not as token examples of appeasement, but as monumental, legitimate blows to a white washed establishment.
What short circuits both of these views, and to an extent even any common ground is the search for racism in everything. Like the boy who cried wolf, the repeated cries numb people to reacting when it actually does exist.
As it pertains to Saturday’s editorial, I disagree with its basic premise. I don’t believe that the Republican party is anymore racist than the rest of society and the Democratic Party in particular. Depending on your perspective, which is more humane: being fed daily at someone else’s discretion, or being taught to cook with brutal efficiency, learn or lose? There are people who would line up on either side depending on their temperment. What if they decide they don’t want to feed you anymore and decide to feed someone else? Conversely what if you aren’t fast enough to learn to cook the way it’s beind taught? Both valid retorts to the above stances.
This November you will have a choice in the most pivotal election in your lives. This isn’t a vote or die commercial. I’m not on anyone’s payroll. But it is important that you look at the issues as they pertain to your families and your children and you vote for the candidate whose platform more closely services your concerns. John McCain is a war hero. So is Jose who just spent two tours of duty in Iraq while his children grow up with an absentee father and his wife is home alone. That doesn’t qualify you necessarily to be president. Learn to see through that.
Conversely, just because you deliver a speech better than 99% of the people who ever walked the face of the Earth, that doesn’t necessarily qualify you either. You can move men to ill as easily as for good, so the charisma and leadership presence by itself doesn’t make you the right choice either.
This isn’t about a finding Black Messiah. It’s about your home. This weekend news came out that the federal government is taking control of Fannie Mae and Freedie Mac. Those aren’t farmers, they are who control most of the mortgage paper out there. So not only are you paying for the earlier bailout, you can tack on probably another $25-$50 Billion once we find out how much bad paper they are actually holding. So far, neither of the candidates has said anything about how they are going to deal with this.
The U.S. is no longer able to be an isolated economy so you as workers and especially your children will be competing in a global marketpalce with people who work longer hours without health insurance or unions bolstering their pay rates. We got robots and unfortunately illegals are being exploited, so the opportunity for you to make money doing menial jobs is decreasing by the second. Who is going to better prepare your children to make anough to feed their families?
There is a school voucher debate going on with both candidates taking positions on the issue but they aren’t really talking about it in the press. Hopefully during the debates they will shed some light on their stances and you as a citizen will be able to make an informed observation. Will they open up opportunity for porrer families to participate in private schools, or will it behave like college where the private institution hike the tuition as the government subsidies rise? If you have school-age children then that’s an important issue as your children have to be armed properly in order to compete in a global marketplace.
In conclusion, do yourselves and America a great service. Tune out the Barack Muslim talk. Tune out the Palin five kids talk. Tune out the McCain old man talk. If you buy into that, then the mythical “they” have you right where “they” want you. And “They” only care about green. Not the save the environment kind of green either. Really look at the issues at hand and vote. Protect your interests. Protect your families. Protect America. Vote on the issues. No matter who that person you select is.