Barack Obama Needs to Raise Money to Nail Sorry Black Politicians
Uncle Luke, the man whose booty-shaking madness made the U.S. Supreme Court stand up for free speech, gets as nasty as he wants to be for Miami New Times. This week, Luke has some advice for the President.
While it was nice to see President Barack Obama finally address the nation about his blackness in the wake of George Zimmerman's acquittal in the killing of Trayvon Martin, the commander-in-chief needs to go much further. Saying "Trayvon Martin could have been me 35 years ago" is not enough.
Obama should crank up his political fundraising machine -- the one that raised close to a half-billion dollars to get him re-elected -- to set up a super PAC that confronts the inequality African-Americans continue to face in the 21st Century.
If Obama is serious about stopping white vigilantes from claiming self-defense when they kill unarmed black teenagers, the prez needs to call up his boy Jay-Z and ask for some of the profits from Magna Carta... Holy Grail to get rid of politicians responsible for Stand Your Ground laws. Put me in charge of the hit list.
I'll start with U.S. Rep Frederica Wilson, a South Florida African-American pol who voted for the controversial law in 2005. Wilson, who at the time was a state senator, now claims she would have voted differently because she never imagined someone would invoke Stand Your Ground to kill an unarmed 17-year-old black boy.
In the wake of Martin's death, she's been front and center at rallies, demanding Tallahassee repeal or make changes to the measure they voted for. Wilson has been demanding that the U.S. Department of Justice file civil rights charges against Zimmerman.
That won't wash her hands of Trayvon's blood. She didn't have the backbone to vote against the law because she was afraid of taking on the National Rifle Association and its lobbyists.
The African-American community can't count on politicians like Wilson. The people who represent us are owned by special interests. They get a phone call from the lobbyists who raise money from people and businesses that don't live in the African-American community telling them what to do. They are afraid the lobbyists will run someone against them If they don't do what the lobbyists tell them to do. And the lobbyists who do look like us are controlled by the white lobbyists.
That is why no one in Tallahassee respects African-American legislators.They don't accomplish anything because of their dependence on the people who raise money for their political campaigns. Without that cash, they have no money to buy the absentee ballots that will win them re-election.
That's what Norman Braman was trying to accomplish by going after the county commissioners last year. He wants to buy his own black politicians to do what he says. We need to demand that our black politicians don't take money from people who don't live in or don't have a stake in the black community. That is when we will see real change happen.
Until then, it will be business as usual.
Correction: This column originally reported that Sen. Chris Smith voted for Stand Your Ground. In fact, he voted against it as a member of the House of Representatives in 2005.
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