I am writing this column late Sunday night before the election takes place on April 7. Like the majority of you, I will be glad when it’s over. This election has done more to prove all of the “whys” in the dysfunctionality of the black community than anything I have ever seen on my 61 years on this Earth.
I think it is good to have two candidates battling over a seat. The office of any elected official doesn’t ever “belong” to them. They get to occupy that seat for a set period of time and then when an election comes up, they battle to keep it.
What I hated most about this election was hearing the subtle and then not-so-subtle discriminatory messages and words that flowed out of black folks’ mouths. Yet when assaults are aimed at a person as if he bears responsibility for his entire group — well, that is just plain ignorant. Just as President Barack Obama isn’t responsible for every black person’s criminal behavior, Jesus “Chuy” Garcia isn’t responsible for his people getting hired.
I have written for years about illegal immigration and its effects on the black community. The response is usually someone calling me “racist,” or else they defend those who came here illegally. When I had the discussion in person with a young lady who is an immigration proponent and she lamented how hard “they worked,” I countered with how hard black people have worked and continue to work. But since the majority of the black community has remained silent when we should have been highly upset, we now have a new group of people whose numbers surpass ours and it ain’t because of birth rates.
Since the 1990s, there has been a systematic and deliberate attempt to allow people to come into this country with the specific goal of displacing America’s once large black minority population. Now all emphasis is on the Latino community with black people being considered part of the American general populace.
The fear mongering by some who have proudly worn their “black, black, black” mantra was sickening. I watched as Westside community activists, who did nothing but lament Rahm Emanuel’s policies in the past, turn over for him because of promises made. I posted a message on Facebook where I wrote that I now understood how Harriet Tubman must have felt as she tried to free black folks who were enslaved. When we don’t take the time to learn the issues, but buy into a commercial without asking and seeking more information, that is the height of ignorance.
Come April 8, whoever is the mayor is still subject to being scrutinized. No more free rides and passes. On the flip side, it is also time to stay on the aldermen’s case as to what they should be doing. The seriousness of Chicago’s economic decline rests in their laps more than it does the mayor. For they are the ones who vote on the issues and allow what has happened to occur.
An educated voter is a very dangerous weapon, which is why politicians love to keep us ignorant. The great equalizer in what politicians do and say is the Internet because that’s where their activities — good or bad — live forever.