Black Republicans Advancing the Cause
by Patrick Hall (October 11, 2010)
Several weeks ago, I visited one of my older siblings who owns’ a Floral Shop in the inner city of Rochester, New York. Although I had been back to Rochester several times since leaving there in 1969: that Rochester where I grew-up (the Rochester of Black and White working-class neighborhoods) has changed considerably.
Although pockets of poverty and unkempt areas had always existed within the city, Rochester was not the collection of boarded-up houses and businesses, trashed full streets and the all too familiar crime-ridden neighborhoods that it is today.
The irony in all of this social dislocation and urban blight, is that most of this has taken place not in pre-civil rights Rochester; but in the 1970’s after Democrats had taken full control of most Eastern cities.
This decline continued to accelerate even after $ 7 Trillion dollars were spent on so-called Great Society and anti-poverty programs engineered by various democratic constituencies since the late 1960’s.
As someone who has lived in 10 states over the last 40 years, these social dislocation and urban pathology conditions is an all too familiar association within the Black community everywhere. Yet these communities are largely governed by Democrats who the majority of African Americans still vote into office despite the lack of any real progress in the areas of education, housing, employment, and business development.
Unfortunately most Blacks still aren’t holding the Democratic Party, or the current crop of problem profiteers otherwise known as the Congressional Black Caucus, remotely responsible for this lack of progress. Meanwhile, Republican legislators, conservatism, racism, and “the evil rich,” continue to rise as the primary reasons for why there has been so little progress despite trillions of dollars spent.
But this year, with fourteen Black conservative/Republican candidates (see below) on the ballot in several congressional districts, we may see the return of black Americans to the party of their roots: the first African Americans to serve in U.S. Congress, the party that founded the NAACP, the party that sent troops to little Rock in the 1950’s, the party that voted at a higher percentage than its democratic opponents for the 1964 Civil Rights Bill and the Voting Rights Bill of 1965. Despite the revisionary history of the Democratic Party, Republicans and more correctly conservatism, offers Black Americans (if not, all Americans) the way out of its dependency culture fostered by nearly 50 years of democratic policies.
- Charlotte Bergman TN-9 opponent Steve Cohen (D) ElectBergmann.com
- Robert Broadus MD-4 opponent Donna Edwards (D) JusticeandLiberty.us
- Stephen Broden TX-30 opponent Eddie Bernice Johnson (D) BrodenforCongress.com
- Michael Faulkner NY-15 opponent Charles Rangel (D) FaulknerforCongress.com
- Ryan Frazier CO-7 opponent Ed Perlmutter (D) FrazierforColorado.com
- Isaac Hayes IL-2 opponent Jesse Jackson, Jr. (D) IsaacHayesforCongress.com
- Charles Lollar MD-5 opponent Steny Hoyer (D) LollarforCongress.com
- Bill Marcy MS-2 opponent Bennie Thompson (D) BillMarcyforCongress.com
- Star Parker CA- 37 opponent Laura Richardson (D) StarParker2010.com
- Bill Randall NC-13 opponent Brad Miller (D) RandallforCongress.com
- Marvin Scott IN -7 opponent Andre Carson (D) ScottforCongress.com
- Tim Scott SC-3 opponent Ben Frasier, Jr. (D) VoteTimScott.com
- Chuck Smith VA-3 opponent Robert Scott (D) ChuckSmith2010.com
- Allen West FL-22 opponent Ron Klein (D) AllenWestforCongress.com
Over the past weeks, I’ve had the opportunity to communicate with a few of these Congressional candidates whose greatest desire is to affect a political, social and spiritual “metanoia” (change resulting from penitence) within the African American community.
To paraphrase the words of one of these candidates, “we must teach all Americans the fundamental lesson that our Constitution was written to promote the general welfare, not provide welfare”.
More than anything else, these individuals still see America as a place of opportunity for all people if we are willing to work for it; and not fall back upon the excuse of racism, racism, and racism—as the cause of what has truncated the social and economic progress of Black communities across this nation.
This new ascension of Black Conservatives is under girded by our belief that we must begin to roll back the state-dependency culture, which Obama and others seek to inflict on the rest of America.
As stated by Star Parker, a candidate running in the California 37th District in a recent column, “we must fight the Obama and the Democratic agenda which seeks to foist the same failed policies on all Americans that have devastated the majority of Black communities throughout the United States”.
As this columnist reviewed websites of these 14 Conservative candidates, one central theme stood out. All of them were firm believers that this is a nation of opportunities for everyone. The opportunity is there, if we are willing to work for it. If we are willing to persevere as Black people, as Americans, to see that the true freedom this country provides is the freedom to succeed and to fail.
We are a nation of opportunity, not entitlement; and the “nanny-state” vision for America that Obama and the Democrats are hell bent on creating, is not what this country has ever been about.
The entire philosophical framework operative within the modern Democratic Party is far too reminiscent of the culture of dependency that characterized East Germany after 50 years of living under communist socialism.
My wife, who hails from what was once West Germany, saw first-hand what happens to a people when a big “nanny-state” government runs everything for a generation. People lose any real incentive to work hard and are much quicker to blame someone, or society, when they are failing as a people.
For far too many East Germans who grew-up dependent on the state for education, food, and “make-work” employment such as a government job in the socialist bureaucracy, and who lived in an entitlement state when the Berlin Wall came down in 1989 and the two Germanys were once again reunited; it was much more difficult for these East Germans to prosper and compete in this new world of freedom.
Similarly, Black folks have also looked far too often to the federal government, or social programs, for their “cultural” salvation; and have found, after forty years, that their neighborhoods and the majority of their family structure devastated by the simple reality that our salvation is not in more government control (which is the core belief of “Obamanism” and the Democrats).
Our progress as a people, as a nation, has its best chance for success when we are free from too much government inference and can pursue our dreams, not as Black Americans, but as Americans.
I urge you to get out and support these unique men and women by voting on November 2nd, and say yes to the freedom and liberty that is America.
Patrick Hall is the Director of the Haskell Memorial Library at the University of Pittsburgh. He is a graduate of St. Peter Canisius and the University of Washington where he earned three Masters Degrees in Religious Studies Education, Anthropology and Library Science. Mr. Hall has published in several national magazines such as Commonweal, America, Headway, Conservative Review, and the National Catholic Reporter. He also has published in peer reviewed journals such as the Journal of Academic Librarianship, Library Trends, Internet Reference Services Quarterly and American Libraries. Mr. Hall serves on the editorial and advisory board of Urban Library Journal a CUNY Publication and is a peer reviewer for the Journal of Black Studies.