(Note: Maybe they are talking about "entertain" in a formal setting because President Lincoln met with Frederick Douglass in the White House years prior.)
Article in the Washington Bee, October 19, 1901:
The Lie Nailed that he is Opposed to the Negro. The First President to Entertain A Negro. Booker T. Washington Dined.
The many false reports that have been circulated that President Roosevelt was opposed to the negro has been eliminated by the many kind acts that he has done prior to his election, and while he was Vice President and since he has been President. While governor of New York a distinguished colored singer was denied in Albany, New York in one of the hotels. The circumstance having reached Mr. Roosevelt he went in person and invited the citizen to his residence where he gave him lodging. When he assumed the office of vice President his first act was to appoint a colored man an executive messenger against the protest of certain officials. Since he assumed the office of President he entertained Prof. Booker T. Washington in the Executive Mansion on last Wednesday evening.
The first President of the United States to entertain a colored man. These many acts of recognition of the negros how [sic] that President Roosevelt is a man.
[inset: a sketch of Booker T. Washington with the caption, "Prof. Booker T. Washington; Dined by President Roosevelt – No color line in the White House – An Object Lesson for the South."]
Interesting how times and conditions have changed so much yet "The Negro" is still indexing his own self worth in reference to how much attention he can get from the President and the "Embedded Black Confidence Men" who sell Black people on how much the President has done for Blacks.
(I would normally insert a statement about how Korean Merchants In Da Hood don't seem to care about what the President has done for them - but I'll spare you)
The truth is that it is best to evaluate this issue from a psychological (needs) perspective and not a political perspective. Despite the absolute fact that times and constraints have changed - the key elements that the article in the "Washington Bee" newspaper from more than 100 years ago are still present in the conscious need for external affirmation among many Black people.
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