Friday, September 28, 2007

The B-Listers Debate

I saw exactly three minutes of the Tavis Smiley debate last night. The first question put to the debaters was something like "No one in the black community can name something good a republican president since Lincoln has done for us. If you become president what will be your legacy to the black community"

Huckabee had a great answer. He said (paraphrasing) "It is too bad they don't remember Eisenhower, who put the National Guard in Arkansas over the objections of a democratic governor...." (Yes, it conveniently forgets that the racist democrats of the 50's now go by another name: Republican. Still, a very cohesive answer that talked about civil rights.)

Ron Paul was next. His answer? Drugs. Change drug laws. Too many guys in jail 'cuz of drugs.

The next white guy republican candidate? Also drugs. And if I'm not mistaken, sickle-cell anemia.

{Click. changing channel}

Okay. Our draconian drug laws are horrendous. Our misapplication of justice regarding blacks, whites, hispanics is shameful. But is that really the first thing that comes to your mind when you are asked about the black community? Drugs?

Hint hint: It's not like the Jena 6 protests happened last year.

Jesuschristonapopsiclestick are these people out of touch.


Brisk said...

Yeah, fixing the war on drugs is the first thing that comes to mind when thinking of ways to stabilize the black community. I'm sorry that a few blacks got beaten, or whatever Jena 6 is about, but we are talking about hundreds of thousands of African Americans that go to jail who shouldn't. That destroys many, many families and costs the taxpayers a bundle.

dguzman said...

Geesus, yes, they're out of touch. Franco above is correct, but I would wager that drugs are not the top reason so many black people are in jail. I think it's stereotyping the black community to just assume it's all about drugs, and it's a much easier (not to mention more racist-friendly) answer than "rebuilding the infrastructure in our cities" and "providing truly equal access to education and opportunities for all people in this country" and the myriad other inequities they could've addressed.

I think your label says it all: "Republicans really don't care."

Jess Wundrun said...

Crikey! I'm sorry that a few blacks got beaten, or whatever Jena 6 is about is not what Jena is about. It does tie in with the drug problem, in that it was a gross and egregious case of justice being meted out completely differently for whites than for blacks. For the record, the basics of what happened in Jena is that white kids got beaten up and the black kids who did it got charged with second degree murder and faced possible jail sentences of up to 100 years. There's much much more but there's your starter.

Here's the problem: drugs are a problem in every strata of society. But to ask a candidate 'what will be your legacy to the black community' and to have the first thing to spring to their minds be a NEGATIVE STEREOTYPE about blacks is disgusting. I'm with dguzman.

Besides, black community doesn't mean 'ghetto'. It means the entire spectrum of people of African descent who live in America. See? You heard those words and your mind went right to 'inner city'.

Does 'white community' send you to Grosse Point in your mind or to Appalachia?

I was just wondering.

Fran said...

Popping in at random from Barcelona! Hola!

Good Lord... I think I am staying here.

Not only is Jena on the map, could someone could have at least eeked out one teeensy little "tragedy that Katrina wrought" or something like that.

I am just wondering WTF is wrong with our country? I wonder this every day.

BTW- I was listening to (annoying person/good interviewer) Brian Lehrer of WNYC (NP) interview Tavis Smiley the morning of the debate.

Tavis remarked that McCain has turned down every single african-american request that he has received. That is to debate, come speak etc. Tavis' was including the PBS debate because he was the one to contact McCain's people for that one.

That says a lot about McCain and the whole sorry lot of candidates.