The 2020 Presidential election attracted two Black candidates in Sen. Corey Booker of New Jersey and Sen. Kamala Harris of California, who sought to be the Democrat’s Presidential nominee against incumbent President Donald J. Trump. While Booker and Harris are known and respected in some circles, they were not the strongest candidates. In fact, it seemed they entered the race solely to test the waters with their popularity. Sen. Booker, who as Mayor of Newark, New Jersey changed the violent reputation of the community, showed little-to-no understanding of what was taking place and made no impact with his campaign. While Sen. Harris spent a great deal of her campaign trying to be relatable or conscious of Black life and culture and defending her work as a prosecutor. Harris unlike Booker has a poor relationship with the Black community as she ruined the lives of many Black men with her ruthless tactics and lack of compassion towards the wrongfully convicted.
In seeing this debacle, I recalled a YouTube clip by InfoWars host Alex Jones. In the clip, Jones provided second hand account of comments made by actor Harry Lennix to television personality Mancow Muller after an interview. Lennix explained how President Obama had studied him for years and knew he would be President. In other words, Obama was trained and groomed to be President of the United States. While the commentary was designed to discredit and shame Obama, I saw wisdom for the future of Black politics.
For long, people have speculated the President of the United States is handpicked and the people really have no say in the matter and that their votes are meaningless. I don’t agree with the latter but I am interested in the former. As a community, why do Black people not come together, mobilize and pick their leaders beforehand and groom them for the Presidency? For so often, the American voters are seeking whether or not the candidate is qualified and worthy of the job. It’s imperative with the knowledge we have about cancel culture that the Black community counter that effort and think ahead. The Black community should be looking at Black politicians and leaders from both sides of the aisle and picking their future president; moreover, investing in their future through politics.
President Barack Obama opened the door to the Black Presidency and served 2-terms scandal free. There were no accusations of extramarital affairs, misuse of power, or impeachment. For the most part, President Obama’s only obstacles were his fellow politicians and racist who hated seeing a Black man in power. It should have been obvious to Black America and its leaders that we must keep the momentum created by President Obama and study the blueprint that helped him reached the highest office in the land.
In sports, athletes like Lebron James and the late Kobe Bryant were touted as the next Michael Jordan after showing glimmers of potential. They were drafted out of High School and with their talent being properly managed they became the face of the NBA in their respective times. The NBA knew it needed an athlete like Michael Jordan in order to keep fans in the stands. If the ratings and interest dwindled the league would lose revenue and become a sport of the past; the NBA needed a star amongst stars. The same knowledge must be applied with Barack Obama – he’s the Michael Jordan that needs to be replaced in order for Black Americans to remain a thriving and ambitious people in America. As a people, we must seek the next politician with Presidential capabilities and guide his path to the Presidency.
The Black community is the most imitated community and the most influential when it comes to sports, music, and fashion. Now it’s time to transfer over that influence to politics where it really matters. We can dictate and shift culture with ease. Yet, we allow politicians to pander to us for support while receiving the bare minimum in return. We use our voice to make others strong instead of using our power to empower ourselves and dominate those who look to use us for direction and confidence.
This year’s election, the Black American voter has the choice between two white senior citizen men with a long history of sexual misconduct, offensive remarks and abuse of power. And yet Black people have no choice but to pick between these two men or stay out of the election completely. Moreover, if we stay out of the election process than we give off the impression of ignorance or lack of respect for our ancestors who fought for our right to vote.
President Trump was once supported and loved by the hip hop community; that relationship has gone sour with only Kanye West being his sole supporter. Biden, on the other hand, is the former Vice President to President Barack Obama, and the man who supported a crime bill that destroyed many Black lives. While Biden seems to be the candidate supported by the majority of Black people, President Trump openly works in favor of the Black community through supporting HBCUs, Prison Reform and Black employment. Yet, Trump with all his efforts towards to Black community is still rejected by Black mainstream media personalities, Black celebrities, athletes, and many prominent community leaders. The response to Trump is another indication of the Black communities desire to have another Black President
It’s very clear, the current political parties do not favor Black people and their needs completely, it’s been clear for a very long time. Yet, the overall feel of the community is to side with one party and attack the other. The system of action is counterproductive as it keeps the people with a one-sided mindset and blind to other ideas and options. Moreover, when old issues re-emerge, like police brutality we never have a clear method of resolving the issue because there’s never been a collective Black method of bringing a solution to that problem. However, the police department have their plans already in place and always seem to resolve such issues with ease.
To really get to the heart of these matters affecting the Black community and resolving them completely, there must be a Black politician with strong agendas for the Black community and an education to lead America away from the racism and the injustice of the past. White politicians are bounded to their history and can never fully eradicate the systemic racism of America without removing the history of their ancestors and destroying their closely held truths. Moreover, white America needs to be convinced and re-educated on race in America and that responsibility can only be taken on by the Black community and its leaders. Much like, Black people were thought white history, white folks must become accustomed to learning Black history.
The Black community has to see its political stars and groom them as Joseph Kennedy did with his children, their futures were designed for them at birth and when the time came, the doors opened. It’s no longer ideal to see Black star power solely in sports, music, and cinema, that way of thinking has left many dreams deferred and many opportunities missed. The Black community must open itself up to all sorts of opportunities and must see the value of securing space in politics and investing in its political future.