Politics

It’s Reparations, Stupid

Is voting rights really the most important issue to Black Americans?

Amidst the artificial outrage surrounding “voting rights” that’s been created by DC politicians, Black Americans continue to push for financial compensation for the greatest crime in human history.

Residual animosity towards the Democratic party continues to grow steadily from the American populace due to what many see as a failed administration.

Complaints on social media and political blogs alike tend to reflect that Americans are taking issue with recent inflation and price jumps in gasoline, audiences tend to dislike Biden’s vaccine mandate push, and many seem to feel that there is a breakdown of border policy, but perhaps the most vexed of these groups is one that the Democrats used to considered a “base” or at least the most consistent voting bloc that they had; The Black community.

“I don’t think I’ll ever vote for them after they showed their [explicit] to us all year.” said Mary Sharpe a Chicago woman who’s advocated for Black Americans 20 years, and a member of the New Black Panther Party’s Chicago chapter.

Mary has campaigned for the Dems since Gore ran in 2000, often canvassing or fundraising for the party.

“What’s worse is that they think that we’re not serious,” she said referencing the Democratic party’s utter ignoring of Black citizens political demands, “So I’ll be looking at other voting options locally this midterm, and definitely in 2024.” she finished.

Mary’s anger at the Democrats ignoring of the Black community’s reparatory demands rings a familiar bell.

After a humiliating defeat in what should have been a lax Virginia race, political analyst from both sides of the isle agree that the Dems might have a 2022 shellacking coming at the ballot box.

Resentment concerning the Democratic party in the Black community is growing fast, with dozens of internal polls illustrating Black voter enthusiasm dropping to its lowest point in 22 years.

Michael Edwards is a DC political analyst who’s worked with both parties over the last decade, and he see’s a much more somber picture for the party’s future.

“I’ve tried–we’ve been trying to talk to young Black voters in specific after the flurry” said Edwards.

The “Flurry” being the major losses the Democrats suffered at the gubernatorial level this winter.

“They are not very receptive to say the least.” He finished.

“Is it just anger at the Democratic party’s handling of the last year? Or is the community venting personal anger at the party?” I ascertained.

“Both in my humble opinion. Yes people are talking about their wallets as usual, but the phrase ‘check now’ or ‘cut the check’ which i understand to be a reference or a argument for reparations, is routinely thrown at us.” Edwards responded.

“Its become clear that they feel that other groups are getting something for their votes while their being ignored, and in many cases they feel that he’s (Biden) insulting them.” Edwards reflected.

“So its purely about the economics. If that’s known and the polls are reflecting animosity, why won’t the Dems who hold a near super majority in all three chambers not push for FBA reparations?” I asked.

“Well its not that simple. You and I both know that any spending or stop gap measures have to be approved by budgetary committees prior to drafting the actual legislation. On top of that, it would have to be approved by a congress that doesn’t want to take blame for the fallout, they’re thinking about the next cycle, the next decade.” Edwards explained.

“They passed 3 stimulus bills within 1 calendar year, and allotted trillions with the latest infrastructure legislation. So the ‘purse strings’ or amendment process clearly aren’t their worries.” I responded.

“You mentioned a possible fallout with voters if the Democrats were to pass financial legislation for Foundational Black Americans. Is that fallout from other voter bases or with the Democrats themselves?” I asked.

“Definitely fallout with other voters, we have to remember that everybody participates not just the Black community.” he said.

“Of course, but the Black polity is the most solid voter bloc for the Dems. While the party has passed financial legislation for groups that we far outnumber, and ones that don’t even vote for them on a consistent basis at that, how does it sound to us now that they’re (Dems) worried about supporting us in the same manner?” I pointed out.

“Of course, i agree 100%. But at the end of the day we operate in a real context. The Democrats are fully dependent on white suburbanite voters similar to the Republicans, but they know that if they’re perceived as doing too much for you all–the Black community, that the other side will galvanize the non-Black votes, not just white voters. So its a rational fear.” Edwards insisted.

“Why would we care? Every other group receives financial security from the federal government, and if anything, we deserve that more than anyone due to Feds involvement in our depravation.” I asked.

“Like i said, i completely agree with you and a ton, a ton and believe it or not, a lot of sitting members and upcoming congressional candidates agree. But the party leadership has been clear; Cash payments are off the table.” he said.

“So if Black Americans want reparations and that means cash payments for FBA’s in specific to start, but the Dems refuse to ‘bend the knee’ so to speak, what’s the point of any Black American voting for them?” I asked.

“No party ever wants to see a bloc or any voters walk away from the table, but I’d be lying to you if i said that the Dems or the Republicans are receptive to the idea of reparations for Black Americans.” Edwards finished.

While older Black Americans have continued to sour on the Democrats but nevertheless continued to support them, data indicates that young Black voters have begun to abandon the party. Voting data from the 2016 national election, the 2018 midterm and the 2020 national election confirm this assertion, and if the trend for 2022 or 2024 continues, the Democrats may be pushed permanently out of contingency for the oval office.

‘The Future’ photo taken by Markiese Brownly

The Black community understands how important their votes are, but they also understand that they owe their lives to their ancestors who were robbed of their belongings and systematically targeted by local, state, and federal authorities for both legal & extra-legal persecution.

Black citizens commitment to their families who’ve been aggrieved is far greater than their commitment to Democratic party’s routine victories.

Maybe capitol hill will finally understand this fact and act in good faith.

Until then, the Democrats may be looking at their final act as a governing body.

Barrington Williams, B1Daily

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