The Republican Party Needs You...
Last week, President Bush was trying to appeal to Black Voters while attending the Indiana Black Expo. The Expo is an annual event that promotes black businesses, healthcare, jobs, education and other opportunities for the Black Community. In Bush’s speech he stressed that small businesses and black homeownership is at an all-time high under his watch. He also talked about his efforts to improve education, Social Security and increase aid to Africa. The timing of this speech couldn’t have been more ironic- considering he just left the G8 Summit, where he tried to convince other Nations to decrease their aid to Africa to make it appear that America’s aid was increased. He also conveniently left out the fact that black homeowner foreclosure is at an all-time high under his watch.
At the same time Bush was delivering his speech, Ken Mehlmen (RNC Chair) was addressing members of the NAACP at their annual convention. He even went as far as to express regret for “Republican attitudes towards Blacks in the past. Saying that, “Some Republicans gave up on winning the African-American vote, looking the other way or trying to benefit politically from racial polarization.” That’s the first sign of truth that I’ve heard from someone in the Republican Party in a long time. It makes me wonder what they’re up to. The Republicans can’t expect that just mere acknowledge of such mistreatment will cause Black voters to come running back to the Republican Party. There is much work yet to be done.
Since the 2000 campaign, Bush has only reached out to carefully chosen minority audiences. In fairness, all of his audiences- black or white- are carefully chosen. Since taking office, Bush has declined several invitations to speak at NAACP sponsored events. Some think it’s because of an ad that was run during the 2000 campaign that portrayed Bush as being unsympathetic towards the dragging death of James Byrd. In the past couple of years, the IRS is investigating whether or not these ads violated the NAACP’s non-profit status. Many think the investigation is revenge.
Whatever the motive is for the recent push to motivate Blacks to vote Republican, it’s cause for Blacks to be on alert. We must hold ALL political parties accountable for our vote. Obviously the Black vote has power. We must recognize that power and use it to our advantage. It’s time to start getting some stuff done for our community.