“Mr. President, Read my Lips: Our vote is not for Sale!” -Al Sharpton, 2004 Democratic National Convention
Damn Straight! We KNOW your vote is not for sale, Al. It was bought a long time ago for a mule… or 40 acres…. Or whatever point you were trying to make in your sermon before your fellow Democrats at the 2004 Convention. Al, I wasn’t impressed with the non-convention- John Kerry’s salute, phony patriotics, y’all hiding your GW hatred. However, I have to give it to you. Your blather left me with something to remember.
In 2000, after the first black president was leaving office and his vice president was running for the Big House, blacks in this country gave 91% of their vote to the Democrat Party. In 2004, after all of the work of the Bush administration- the high profile, exceptional black cabinet members, the highest percentage of black home ownership ever, the significant legislation on “No Child Left Behind”, etc. – the Republicans took a bite out of that 91% and were able to increase their percentage of black votes from 9 percent to a whopping 11 percent (there is a rumor going around that all of these black voters were seen on CSPAN on the floor of the Republican Convention in New York).
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How do you explain these numbers? The Republicans increased their percentage of Latino voters to 44% from 35% in 2000. Republicans and Bush made improvements in women, Asian, union households and even gained 23% of the gay/bisexual vote in a year where the Gay Marriage Issue was on 11 state ballots. Bush even got 25% of the Jewish vote. So why do blacks continue to only vote for the donkey candidate???
I have to give it to the black community for their loyalty. It doesn’t matter what name is on the ballot, or what issues are being discussed, or what facts are presented (although I did like the “deer in the headlights” look on many of the Urban League members after Bush gave one of his most powerful speeches to the League earlier this year), the blacks are going to vote “democrat”. It’s explained that the Jewish Community still thinks that FDR is running things and that is why they vote democrat (that is an issue to itself). But, what is the excuse of the black community?
True, the Democrat Party’s socialist ways introduced welfare policy to our society. Through the welfare program, black child poverty levels actually increased from 40.4% in 1971 to 41.5% in 1995. It wasn’t until the Republicans pushed for Welfare Reform in the 1990’s that black child poverty levels actually decreased to 30.2% in 2001. This was the lowest level in national history despite the strains of a recession.
Let’s look at one other little societal issue. Today the number of black males in prison is at or close to one million individuals. In 2000, nearly one in ten black men was incarcerated. This is outrageous! I will say it again. This is outrageous! This is not the type of headline that you see flash across the nightly news, and then forget about the next week. This is horrendous! Why is this just ignored or forgotten? Why do I not see this discussed in the weekly black news pages but instead see some baseless hate mongering against conservatives? Why are we not all mobilized, black and white, all of us, to FOCUS on this Shame in our society?
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I work in the private sector. I have seen leaders ignore issues. I have seen leaders hold an office but not lead. I have seen leaders who do not know what is going on or what the real issues are. I have seen leaders not produce. I have seen leaders afraid to lead… These leaders were replaced! As I noted earlier, the black community is very loyal. But, I do hope that soon there will be an honest and open discussion on “results” and on “leadership”. I believe that it is past the time to find new leadership and direction in the black community. I pray that the black community looks honestly at the policies of both political parties. I pray for it’s own good that the black community looks at the value in conservative proposals. I pray that the black community sees the strength in playing for the vote and not just giving in so easy. I pray that the black community does find the answers to heal and not just survive but to thrive! Because, I do care. And, I am a conservative.