OpinionMeister

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Dems and the Black Voter

Tony Snow has an interesting article about the Democrats' growing problem with black voters. Link.
In subtle and unstated ways, Howard Dean has aired a dirty little secret. Democrats have a growing problem with black voters, and it stems from three sources. First comes the simple fact that government "help" has proved an unmitigated disaster for low-income black Americans. Eighty years ago, black children in such places as New York, Philadelphia and Detroit were more likely to grow up in two-parent homes than whites. Now, 70 percent of the nation's black children are born out of wedlock, black men comprise 70 percent of the nation's prison population, black graduation rates lag far behind white rates — and all these numbers have worsened by several degrees of magnitude since Uncle Sam launched the war on poverty.

Second comes the fact that the war on poverty itself degenerated into a vast insult against black Americans. Poverty programs assumed that blacks lived naturally in a state of poverty, lawlessness, ignorance and cupidity — and that there was nothing blacks themselves could do about it. The culprits, after all, were "root causes" such as slavery.

In other words, black Americans couldn't conquer hardship without white help. It was a small step for left-wing officeholders to treat minority voters as dependents, who owed absolute fealty to their kind benefactors. This explains why conservative blacks receive such vituperation from the likes of Sen. Edward Kennedy. It is as if an ungrateful child had spurned a generous and loving parent, who could only watch in exasperation and declare: "After all I've done for you!"

Third, a values gulf has opened between the Democratic Party and black voters. The key Democratic interest groups focus on two causes — prolonging the sexual revolution and suppressing conventional religious expression. The party's untouchable cause, abortion, has more appeal to white suburban housewives than to more conservative blacks. Ditto for gay marriage, and the growing Democratic hysteria about religion, which dismisses orthodox religious views as "extreme."

Black voters have trickled away from the Democratic fold without flocking to the GOP. Polling indicates that a growing percentage of black voters identify themselves as "independents."

Republicans should have had an easy time appealing to black voters. The Democrats were the party of slavery and later the party of Jim Crow. It was Democrat senators who killed every anti-lynching and civil rights bill until 1964, and even then they tried unsuccessfully. Their senior member in the senate is a former kleagle of the Ku Klux Klan, who personally participated in the filibuster against the 1964 Civil Rights Act. The Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act passed over Southern Democrat opposition because the Republicans voted in large numbers for them.

The so-called "War on Poverty," which did little or nothing to end poverty, but helped to destroy the cohesion of black families and black neighborhoods, gave its hundreds of billions of dollars not to the poor, but to "poverty professionals." Included in that definition was anyone whom the MSM identified as a "black leader." These people were bought and paid for, and they have spent the decades since telling black voters that the Democrats are their friends and that the Republicans want to reinstitute slavery or at least Jim Crow.

As long as black voters had no alternative to the liberal media monopoly, they never heard the truth about who fought for their rights and who opposed those rights. Now, with the media monopoly broken, more and more black voters are learning that most of their ideas are shared by the Republicans, not the Democrats, and that the Democrats take them for granted.

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