ALLEN WEST: Conservative black issues at forefront of political platforms
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla., November 2, 2013 — There are some encouraging signs that black Americans are beginning to understand that liberal Democratic leaders and the policies they support are doing far more harm than good to their communities. And conservative black issues are becoming a part of many black — and white — political platforms.
There is a conservative black candidate for Lieutenant Governor of Virginia — E.W. Jackson. Jackson is a former Marine, a Harvard educated attorney, and an ordained minister whose conservative values should be warmly embraced by those who will most benefit from them.
Just last week, NBA Star, future Hall of Famer, and Newark native Shaquille O’Neal officially endorsed New Jersey Governor Chris Christie. In July, the Black Ministers Association of New Jersey also blessed Christie with their endorsement.
So what are the key issues for black voters? Education for one.
Christie’s support of choice in education for all children, including black children, has made him a poll leader in the New Jersey governor’s race. That is especially interesting since President Barack Obama cancelled the D.C. school voucher program in February 2009, immediately after his inauguration.
The black community has forgotten it was Republican President Dwight Eisenhower who federalized the National Guard to protect black students like the Little Rock Nine. Democrats like George Wallace and Lester Maddox stood outside the doors blocking access to better education.
Today, it’s liberal progressives who stand inside the school doors blocking access to the choice of a better education for black children.
Indeed, the Democrats’ steady assault on the black community has been going on for decades. Never mind that it was the Democrats who gave America slavery, secession, segregation, Jim Crow laws, poll taxes, and literacy tests. Or that the Democratic Party gave birth to the Ku Klux Klan, whose early missions were to intimidate black voters. One cannot argue these policies were anything but racist and damaging.
When the initial Civil Rights Bill came before the full Senate in 1964, it was a group of 18 Southern Democrats who argued most fervently against its passage, including Al Gore Sr. and ex-Klansman Robert Byrd. It was Republican Senator Everett Dirksen who was instrumental in building support for the legislation.
The Civil Rights Act passed, finally ending the reprehensible practices of segregation, but the liberal progressive policies passed during these last nearly five decades have perhaps done more damage to black Americans’ prospects than the overtly racist policies of the past. Unemployment in the black community remains above 15 percent overall, and almost 40 percent for black teens. Food Stamp enrollment, an indicator of financial failure, is up, and nearly three-quarters of all black children do not live with their biological fathers.
Welfare policies first championed by President Lyndon Johnson, supposedly to aid single mothers, have instead worked perversely to incentivize more young women to have children out of wedlock.
High minimum wages advocated by labor unions — from whom Democrats receive tremendous financial support — mean employers are less apt to hire unskilled black youths, or any youths for that matter.
For the left, “spending on education” means job protection and preserving benefits for teachers. It doesn’t mean actually improving education for students in public schools, where black students can build a foundation for economic advancement.
Even urban planning policies have a deleterious effect on the economic progress of black Americans. In cities like San Francisco, severe building restrictions drive real estate prices through the roof, making neighborhoods unaffordable to many black families.
Inner cities like Detroit are beginning to resemble combat zones. We were supposed to be living in a post-racial America since we elected the first “African-American” president. That’s hardly the case.
Black Americans seek opportunity; liberals instead promote dependency by way of expanding the society of those in poverty and on government subsistence via food stamps.
America rewards diligence and determination, but liberalism redistributes the fruits of labor and effort to those who have had their hopes and dreams stolen by the lie of low expectations.
Even PBS host Tavis Smiley was forced to admit to Sean Hannity on Fox News, “The data is going to indicate sadly that when the Obama administration is over, black people will have lost ground in every single leading economic indicator category.”
But the tide is turning. High profile black endorsements for Christie, along with Elbert Guillory’s impassioned explanation as to why he left the Democratic Party, demonstrate a political awakening in the black community. It is beginning with small but significant ripples which are spreading across the country.
The only way for black Americans — for all Americans — to enjoy the full fruits of economic freedom is by once again embracing the spirit of individualism and self-determination laid out in our Constitution. That spirit is exemplified by true black leaders, such as Frederick Douglass and Booker T. Washington. It is only by abandoning the damaging liberal progressive policies and throwing off the shackles of the victim mentality that black Americans can finally be “free at last.”