I just got into a shouting match with a good friend of mine that ended with him cussing me out and hanging up on me. What produced the argument? He said he’s not voting in this Presidential election because Barack Obama has not been supporting Black businesses and has never mentioned anything about the poor in the debates. I just couldn’t believe what I was hearing. Apparently there are some Black writers out there who are actually promoting these pernicious ideas.
Some African Americans are so jealous of Obama’s success, and so selfish and resentful of the man, that they can’t see the forest for the trees. Of course we all realize there are Black Republicans voting for McCain out of sincere belief in their party’s philosophy, and I can respect that, however misguided I think they are. But the idea that a Black man (or women) would refuse to vote at all, simply because some Black newspaper publishers feel the Obama campaign doesn’t throw them enough advertising dollars, or that he hasn’t specifically mentioned the poor as often as they would have liked, especially when the middle-class itself is loosing so much ground, is to me unforgivable. Hasn’t the “Black economy” myth been refuted decades ago? And when Obama talks about universal healthcare being a “right”, isn’t he standing up for the “poor”. To my friend I say, “come on brother, get with the program”.
This is the same rubbish Ralph Nader was pushing in 2000 which most commentators agree cost Gore the presidency. I just couldn’t believe that someone so close to me signed on to this nonsense, and as he put it, “I’m not voting for a Black man just to make a symbolic statement”. Man, this brother just doesn’t understand what this thing is all about, and it is painful to know that some Black people think this way.
I believe that Barack Obama will be the next President of the United States, and all the numbers seem to support that conclusion. Today I can tell my 11 year-old son, as I did this past weekend, that he too can seek the highest office in the land, an aspiration completely denied to me when I was his age. I’m sorry brother, with all due respect, you don’t get it.
Let all of us who do understand the stakes involved in this election mobilize our efforts to insure a massive turnout at the polls, Let’s give this tremendously talented man, Barack Obama, a landslide victory. We’ll just pray for the other lost souls.