Friday, September 17, 2010

Want Diveristy? Stop doing stupid $H!T

I had a long post written on this issue…and erased the whole thing! We have discussed it ad nauseum time…, and time…, and time…, and time…, and time..., and time ..., and time again.

At this point, I don’t know if there is really much to say.

So I'll keep it simple.

We've all seen the GOP website with all the Black faces, and recently, the push by the Tea Party to increase diversity among its ranks.  We've heard from everything from Blacks won't let other Blacks be conservative to Blacks are too "sensitive."  In reality, if the conservative right wing was REALLY interested in the African American community, they would STOP saying and doing FLAT OUT racist or just plan STUPID shit.

At a recent National Federation of Republican Women event in South Carolina, State Senator Glenn McConnell (who loves dressing up as a Confederate Soldier) dressed for the event, THIS time complete with two Negro Slaves (I'll get to them in a moment). 

I'm sure Senator McConnell finds this humorous, and feels that showing Confederate Southern Pride is acceptable.  But THIS is a PERFECT example of doing something that would turn away THE MAJORITY of African American support.  MOST African Americans CLEARLY do not see the Confederacy as something to be proud of - Personally I think it is celebrating treason...but that is my personal opinion.  Things like this and Virginia's "Confederate History Month," isn't a celebration of "Southern Pride" to most African Americans.  It is a slap in the face, a remind of the a hatred and a desire and want for Slavery that was so deep and heavy, it actually ripped our country about and lead it into a war with itself!  So while Senator McConnell goes around saying:
“It was a friendly photograph,” McConnell said Wednesday. “What the ladies had put together was a smorgasbord of Southern culture. It was reflected in the dress, the historical accuracy of the performances and even down to the food. It was a wonderful, entertaining and educational night for those visitors. It showed the approach we have in this state of a shared history.”
Understand that this MAY not come off as 'innocent' as it is in your head.  It is positions - and dismissals - like this that make it near impossible for the Right to build African American support.

I'm sure Senator McConnell will tell you he isn't a racist, and maybe he isn't.  But feeling that this is okay, makes it hard for MOST African American's to believe.
If you want African American support, we need to believe that OUR issues matter to you.  While we are not all tied at the hip as it relates to political and social issues, and neither party has REALLY committed itself to the African American issues, I don't see the Democrats, or those on the left, taking up issues that are directly at odds with the African American community.  "Joining" the Tea Party shouldn't simply be a matter of conforming or acquiescing to THEIR issues.  Personally, I would LOVE to find a common ground that would work for ALL people, but their path doesn't line up with that thinking.  Their path is in SPITE of the African American perspective.

So, to repeat, if you are serious about being inclusive and wanting more African Americans to join your ranks, STOP DOING SHIT LIKE THIS... It doesn't come off as very inclusive as you would like it to be.

Hell, at the very least…DON’T TAKE PICTURES OF IT!!!

As for the two in the picture... I think said it best:
However, the fact that there are not one, but two, African Americans in attendance dressed up as slaves and willing to be photographed smiling is just mind-blowing. Perhaps they didn’t get the memo that being dressed up as slaves and taking pictures with a Confederate soldier isn’t cool.
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