NPR News & Notes: Obama's Success Impacting Notions of Race?
This conversations proves interesting regarding how DESPITE THE FACTS ON THE STREETS in areas that are ALREADY controlled by Democrats, "Democrats who are Black" are able to be made to look past the current plateau upon which they stand and to LOOK UP toward the next plateau, avoiding the broken glass that they might cut their feet upon. The fact that the bottles where broken by community members within is of no consequence.
Joseph Lowery and Afi Scruggs joined in to answer a series of questions posed by Tony Cox.
Lowery was asked about his reaction to the Tuesday clinch of the Democratic nomination by Barack Obama: "It as a warm and spiritual feeling" he said. For me - I again will remember that on the same day that Black folks where calling in with their joy about Obama they were also criticizing the 100% Democratic government of Clayton county which is on the PLATEAU that they are standing on RIGHT NOW. Their need for motivation to go higher is only because of the failure to manage that where they stand today.
Lowery went on to say that this is the dawn of the "Year of Jubilee has come true in the body politic". Once again - if your interest is the election of a Black president as your barometer rather than to make measure of the important elements of the "misery index" within the Black community - indeed this might be the case.
Afi Scruggs went on to state that the label that is most appropriate is "miraculous". Once again we see the circular reference where no Black person should dare question the policies and abilities to transform their personal lives by the "first Black president" because in doing so they may torpedo the FIRST BLACK PRESIDENT from ever being seated in office. This is where the prioritization of VALUE and the clarity of purpose comes in to place. I want a FIXED BLACK COMMUNITY as my overriding purpose. The machine that Obama is riding on ALREADY has control over every single Black majority district yet has failed to make improvements WITHIN. I cannot allow my desire to see the "first Black president" trump my desires that are more relevant and close to home.
Rev Lowery then equated the Obama nomination to the 1957 speech by Martin Luther King Jr in which he demanded "Give us the ballot". Lowery makes repeated references to JUSTICE and LIBERTY. It is clear that when we look WITHIN THE BLACK COMMUNITY of today where if not "people who look like us" running the show then most certainly - politically favorable people are doing so - the list of "Justice and Liberty" must be appended by the notion of EFFECTIVE RESULTS DELIVERED.
This entire episode is the instantiation of what I pointed out previously regarding the 1968 election of Carl Stokes to the mayorship of Cleveland. All of the Civil Rights infrastructure who years prior were fighting for absolute justice for Black people, put on their Democratic party hats and lobbied to get this Black man elected mayor. Needless to say that 40 years later Cleveland, noted as one of the poorest cities in the nation has NOT lived up to the promise. I am not blaming the "first Black mayor" but we can conclude that the progress of Black people is not tied to nor ASSURED by having electoral victories by POPULAR candidates.
Next the question was asked - "Was Black America wrong about how Whites see Black people?" Ms Scruggs answered "NO". She then made the case that Obama did not take Ohio and that no Black person has ever served a state wide office in Ohio. I guess that we are to believe that any state that Clinton won is a RACIST state. This would include California, New York and Pennsylvania. Now get this - the state of Texas which Obama came close to winning due to the boost granted from the caucus voters after the election should now been seen as "less racist" than NY and CA - solidly blue states.
I take it that Ms. Scruggs does not see former Ohio Secretary of State Ken Blackwell as a Black man. He held state office in Ohio. Indeed Black is a political orientation in some people's minds so I am not surprised.
Tony Cox asked how the election of Barack Obama would impact the day to day lives of Americans Black and White. Ms. Scruggs said that it would be REVOLUTIONARY. Please see my previous blog entry regarding ARBITRARINESS. This statement should be filed under this folder.
Scruggs mentioned that "White identify is based on SUPREMACY." When someone is your equal your notions of supremacy must be put aside. Anyone reading my views will note that there is a corollary concept that must be said as well - YOU AS A BLACK MUST PUT ASIDE ANY LINGERING NOTIONS OF INFERIORITY as a pretext of ACHIEVING A STATE OF FULL EQUALITY. Thus - sitting next to a White kid in school so that YOU will obtain education by osmosis must be retired. INSTEAD we must make note of the differences in the management culture within these two schools and expel those practices in your school that pave the way toward inferior results.
At the 8:25 mark once again Lowery references - "Standard measures of Justice and Progress". I believe that I AM introducing STANDARD MEASURES OF PROGRESS to make note that DESPITE the growth in political power of the ideology and party that Lowery favors........the plateau that we are standing on as a people has NOT been managed and the promised results have not been produced.
Note that Lowery has a consumer consciousness - Justice, Equality. He sees this as streaming from the government and society upon Black people. Until there is EQUAL flow - his job is not done. I beg and plead that he look at the fact that in his home town of ATLANTA - there are at least 3 counties and the primary cities within them that are lead by Democrats. The "justice" is dispensed by BLACK elected officials in many cases but, absent race - most of them DEMOCRATS. Lowery continues the racism chase seemingly unaware that now he has doubled back on himself. The old enemies who sat in chairs of power ARE NOW GONE. In their place warming the chairs are DEMOCRATS who he favors. Still he CHASES.........
Finally in the closing comments at the 10:00 mark - Lowery makes the case that Obama can't have a congress that shows antipathy toward his plans. Let's evaluate this. He is making the case that "Obama's plans" are inherently correct and should not be scrutinized by a congress that has doubts about their veracity. I need not remind many of you that over the past 7 years the EROSION OF CONGRESS as a CHECK UPON THE EXECUTIVE was the proof that many left-wing authors used to make the case that America is now a fascist state. It appears that they were really saying "WHEN A PRESIDENT THAT WE DON'T LIKE IS IN POWER.....his power MUST BE CHECKED. If we like you - we should turn the keys to the kingdom over to you". Anyone who seeks to keep a check on the power of the guy we like is an OBSTRUCTIONIST.
11:25 Lowery says "Another plateau has been scaled". Again I ask that we take inspection of the plateau upon which we stand right now and attempt to get these and the lower ones into shape. Lowery keys upon the ethereal notions of "Justice, Hope and Promise" but says nothing about the logistical plans to keep our streets safe, our school high quality and employment of people because they have skills.
Upon listening to this and making note that the Washington DC police department now has a roadblock in which they inspect everyone entering a certain Black community - it is clear to me that it is not WHAT government does to impose upon us as a people but WHO is in the government doing so and if we like them.