Citing his frustration and disgust with the way the Democratic Party offered Black folks little more than equivocal speech and a co-dependence/over-reliance on the Federal Government, Guillory claimed he could no longer in good conscience continue fighting the good fight, from the blue side of the aisle.
In September, Guillory went as far as to accuse Democrats of using the African American voting bloc in a way comparable to a one-night stand; though I recognize Guillory’s self-serving political posturing for what it is, I have to admit there are parts of his reasoning that actually make sense to me.
Here’s why: Sen. Guillory’s characterization of the Democratic Party, in relation to its treatment of African Americans, is one I believe to be completely accurate. In fact, in one of my earliest pieces, Slaves to the Partisan Political Rhythm (please forgive the length), I said the Democrats’ relationship with, and treatment of African Americans was “pimp-ho” in nature, in that the Donkey Butts know they can get away with making us promises they have no intention of keeping.
Guillory himself waited until after he was elected to switch parties, keenly aware of the fact there was no way in Hell staunchly Democratic Black voters would knowingly vote a Republican into office – especially one that looks like us.
That Guillory’s own actions perfectly illustrate the very treachery he admonished the Democratic Party for displaying toward African Americans, yet in the same breath, he had the audacity to denigrate us for being unable to spot the party’s treacherous behavior is an irony FAR from lost on me.
But the GOP is just as treacherous as Guillory claims the Democrats are.
Which is why I vehemently disagree with Sen. Guillory’s assessment of the Republican Party, touting “The Party of Lincoln” as a legitimate, viable political alternative for Black folks. More than a few African Americans – myself included – have never really pictured the party or its members as being particularly inclusive of or welcoming to those of a darker hue.
And with good reason.
Yeah. That happened.
This is the party Elbert Guillory says is better for Black folks?
What about Rep. Sen. Paul Ryan’s assertion that “lazy, inner-city” (Black) men and their ignorance of “the value and culture of work” are the reasons the American economy’s still struggling, as if Bernie Maddoff and the Wolves of Wall St. had absolutely nothing to do with it?
With “friends” like these…
The bottom line: Our problems with the Republican Party run WAY deeper than our so-called arbitrary bias against it, or the way it claims we’ve “misconstrued” its image.
It’s the party’s attitude and philosophy towards African Americans, in general that make so many of us steer clear of anything remotely close to resembling the GOP.
African Americans have legitimate grievances with the Republican Party; asking us to go against our better judgment by aligning ourselves with a group of individuals, who, in the present-day narrative, don’t seem to like us all that much, is antithetical to our political survival, and nobody with even a lick of sense should fall for their okie-doke.
To use what the Republican Party was once upon a time as a recruiting tool and rallying cry for the Black vote – as Sen. Guillory has done – is both insulting and disingenuous. Who gives a damn what the socio-political philosophies of the parties were, (not so) way back when? One would only have to take a look at where we are, now, and take a look at the people who put us here, to see where the problem lies.
But, even that’s only part of problem: The rest of the problem is the wrong-headed belief one party’s better or worse than the other, when the only thing that truly separates Democrats from Republicans is the rhetoric.
Rhetoric is defined as “Language designed to have a persuasive or impressive effect on its audience, but often regarded as lacking in sincerity or meaningful content.”
We collectively keep putting people into office – people who are later responsible for creating the public policies that keep African Americans at a disadvantage – based ALMOST ENTIRELY on their ability to impress us with insincere, meaningless speech.
Yet we have the gall to ask why nothing for us has changed.