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Same song yesterday, same song yesterday

Pastor Rasheed Baaith

Same song yesterday, same song yesterday

By Pastor Rasheed Z Baaith

    “How long, ye simple ones, will ye love simplicity?  And the scorners delight in their scorning, and fools hate knowledge?”  (Proverbs 1:22)

    I don’t know what I felt most as I watched the CPAC (Conservative Political Action Committee) conference over the weekend, pity or sadness.  It was like watching a movie about people who were living in a different time zone or at least were in residence in a place where they wanted time to stand still.

    No doubt the most influential power group in the Republican Party, CPAC, put on worldwide display the reasons why the Republican Party would always be the political choice of those who believe intolerance of most and grudging acceptance for some is the heart beat of America.

    It was a who’s who of politicians who advocate political exclusion and the demonization of any who oppose their viewpoints, no matter what the subject may be. These people have a developed a political culture that is myopic in its appeal and reactionary in its application. 

    While some talk about the Republican Party’s identification crisis, I don’t see it.  They are led by those who see no value in becoming more than their present reputation. If the stars of your show are folks like Wayne LaPierre, Marco Rubio, Sara Palin, Rand Paul, Paul Ryan, Milt Romney and Donald Trump, who are you trying to appeal to and what is the change they are supposed to bring?

    Not that there were not Black folks in attendance.  There were, including but not limited to Allen West, Dr. Ben Carson, T. W. Shannon, Tim Scott, Francesca Chambers, Sonnie Johnson, Chelsi Henry and members of the Fredrick Douglas Republicans. I know. I never heard of some of these folks either. And I’m willing to bet there were some meetings none of these people were invited to. 

    I’m all for having a different perspective on things but to want to participate in a forum where your people are thought so little of you are required to be self-hating to some extent just to be heard is something I don’t understand.

    It’s not the conservative thinking I find problematic; I’m fairly conservation myself.  Especially when it comes to marriage and family issues.  But to accept the demand to fault one’s ethni-city for any social wrongs they suffer is more than wrong thinking. It equates to helping to plan the genocide of your people.

    And it has become increasingly clear that when the Republicans and the Democrats too, for that matter, discuss outreach to minority groups, they are rarely thinking of Black Americans.  They are thinking about Latinos, gays, Asians and women.

    We have become an afterthought to both political parties and with good reason: the Democrats have taken our support for granted for years, even more now that President Obama is in office and we still support that party while the Republicans believe if their Latino base is expanded, they won’t need the Black vote.  Ever.

    Both parties understand that we don’t believe that politics is a transactional process. We’ve made it clear with our unwavering support of President Obama that symbolism means more to us than substance.

    The Republican Party in general and CPAC in particular are led by what some call the “conservative entertainment complex.” Led and directed by Rush Limbaugh and FOX News, it determines the content and tenor of political debate for conservatives.  CPAC is a walking talk show for those of the far right.

    And they like what they hear.


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