By Dennis J. Freeman
The midterm election turned out to be disastrous for the Democratic Party. The American public may have lost as well. With Republicans now controlling the House and gaining power in the Senate as a result of the nationwide election, politicians representing the Democratic base must do something to show they have some bone left in their spineless backs if they hope to keep President Barack Obama in the White House for another four years.
The beat down the Democrats received on Tuesday, in my opinion, was not a result of President Obama’s inability to connect with the poor and the middle-class, but more of the elitists in this country wanting to keep things the way they have been. It had to do more with the Democratic leadership turning their backs on President Obama-their party leader.
Changing of the Guard
The giant political shakeup we experienced also had something to do with the fact that African Americans’ turnout at the polls continue to be a symbol of apathetic behavior. And it had everything to do with a certain faction of this nation that refuses to accept America being run by a black man. So now we have bozos masquerading as reporters going around asking the President who is in charge of leading the country.
Now we’re at a point of questioning the leadership of this country. Really? Well, it really shouldn’t be a surprise. A black person will never receive the autonomy of assumed leadership in this country as that of his or her white counterpart. To use a sports analogy, black quarterbacks always have to look over their shoulders in fear of being pulled out of a game for a far-less competent white colleague, their leadership questioned if they become ineffective.
Just ask Washington Redskins quarterback Donovan McNabb. Moreover, pay attention and listen to TV announcers rave about white quarterbacks as to their quiet distain of the black quarterback as his leadership skills are constantly challenged in a public format. Since his ascension into the Oval Office, President Obama has had everything about his way of doing things as the nation’s commander-in-chief, scrutinized, dissected and picked over.
That’s expected to happen with any president. But in just two years, President Obama has been raked over the coals of continued racial bigotry (Is he American or Muslim?), drawn more scorn from overzealous lawmakers bent on removing all of his accomplishments (healthcare reform) and witnessed the political climate dramatically shift in the Republicans’ favor.
Was this election a referendum on President Obama’s policies? I would say no. The achievements that President Obama has made in two years, is endless and cannot be discounted. Nor can it be dismissed that he was left with the charge to straighten out a mess-that includes two wars, a tanked economy and high unemployment-left for him to clean up by former President George W. Bush.
Policies and Practicality
Republicans made America forget that is was on their watch that President Bush, in eight years, lied to the nation and led an unjustified war (Iraq) and did virtually nothing as thousands of people died as a result of the devastating floods left behind by Hurricane Katrina. If President Obama had been the nation’s leader under those circumstances, it’s a sure bet that he would have been impeached from office in a blink of an eye.
Republicans never held President Bush accountable for his actions as much as they put together efforts to remove President Obama from office. Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell has made it clear he wants nothing to do with this president, calling for an agenda to make President Obama a one-term wonder. This is not working for the American people. This is sabotage. This is clearly not about one political party working hand-in-hand with the other for the future of our children and their children.
The Republican Party, especially its radical Tea Party wing, does not stand for all Americans. They stand for elitism and a section of white America that want nothing to do with being inclusive when it comes to living the American dream. In that regards, my America is going to look a lot different than Sarah Palin’s America.
And it will continue to be so as long as there are distinctions of race, discrimination, civil rights, injustices of the law and the fight for equality and inclusiveness being disseminated as non-factors in achieving what every American wants. Sarah Palin doesn’t ever have to worry about being pulled over by law enforcement and think about being accidentally shot. A black man does.
Mitch McConnell can sleep well at night knowing that it is not his people that have to worry about the possibility of a repeal of the 14th Amendment, which granted African Americans or descendants of slaves the right to citizenship in this country. That is my worry. And soon-to-be Speaker of the House John Boehner can only sympathize with the plight of thousands of black farmers who have waited for years to have their discrimination case against the government settled.
For the most part the Democratic Party is just as clueless and removed the realities of poor and middle-class folks. And the only real difference between the Democratic Party and Republican Party is President Obama. The Democrats have no juice with common people. They get punked around by Republicans, and sit there and take it like Kuta Kinte took his beating. It’s time for us to stop playing Russian Roulette with our future.
It’s time for African Americans take responsibility for their inaction at the polls. And it’s time for the Democratic Party to man up or stand down.