By Mikel Kwaku Oshi Holt
The “New Liberals”: Wolves in Sheeps’ Clothing!
We have long believed that liberals are the friends of African Americans.
Maybe we were wrong. Or maybe they changed their minds about the parameters of our relationship and didn’t tell us.
During the height of the Civil Rights Movement “liberal” and “progressive” took on a similar connotation, and to be either was to be accepted as a friend of African Americans, a social and political colleague and a soldier for truth, justice and the American way (as the theme for the 1950-60s Superman television series declared).
When we thought of integration the image of the chocolate loving white liberal benefactor came to mind.
When we demanded basic civil rights, we turned to liberal politicians to write the legislation and champion our causes in the halls of government.
And when we needed coal for the Freedom Train, we turned to our beloved liberal sponsors, who not only supplied the ore, but also stoked the furnace.
Liberals were the abolitionists who risked liberty and life to provide assistance on the Underground Railroad.
They introduced the Reconstruction policies, and when our ancestors were ultimately betrayed and the 40 acres and mule reparations were rescinded, it was the liberals who invited us “Up North” to the promised land of segregation and separation (at least we had jobs—and welfare).
But something happened around 1976: The Freedom Train made a stop over, but it wasn’t Black folks who disembarked, it was our liberal friends.
That’s the time period that makes the most sense to me, or at least as it applies to Wisconsin.
That was the year of the school desegregation lawsuit, when the Community Journal was born, and the liberals had to expose their new—or maybe old—sun burned behinds.
I initially couldn’t figure out why they kept telling us the court-ordered desegregation plan was an “integration plan.”
I should have figured it out when a few years prior they said nothing as the school board systematically closed dozens of “Black” schools, thereby “forcing” Black students to be bused under the so-called voluntary program. Or why they converted new schools to specialties or magnets and set aside most of the seats for white students.
The entire process was a sham, our newspaper revealed. The entire scheme was never truly about integration (the court remedy for segregation isn’t integration, but desegregation).
Instead, the complicated scam, perpetrated by our “liberal friends,” had the intent of keepings us (Black folks) out of their neighborhoods and to limit their children’s exposure to ours.
They then used our children to supplement their loss of suburban school revenues through a bounty program and if that wasn’t enough, tore down our Black business district for an expressway spur that was never built.
The nation’s bicentennial was an appropriate year to pull down their draws. The Community Journal has been headlining the inconsistencies and betrayals of liberals and the Democratic Party they used as cover ever since (although far too many Black folks have not—or will not—put the pieces together for themselves).
The suburbs were said to be open to Black migration, but to venture in into those neighborhoods was to invite harassment by their police departments. The silence of liberals to racial profiling spoke volumes.
Black police and firefighters would soon turn to their liberal friends for support on lawsuits to integrate their respective departments, only to be rejected.
Several years later they started making excuses for police brutality, including the killing of Ernie Lacy.
If the message wasn’t clear enough, we should have listened closer when the suburban liberals rejected federal low-income housing grants, and Polly Williams’ legislation to carve out a Black school district to be managed solely by people she said “really loved us”—other Black people.
In fact, every time we sought Black empowerment—whether to control the institutions in our community (they took over most, including OIC, CYD and soon SDC) or to choose the schools for our children—the liberals stood in our paths, telling us to trust “their” status quo.
Turn the station dial to “radio station 2000s.” A national civil rights report shows that Madison, Wisconsin, the “beacon of liberalism,” is also the 10th most racist city in America. Say what?…Madison?
The same city that, in the 1960s and ‘70s, peace demonstrators threatened to blow up stuff?
Where you can’t walk down a street without running into a college student listening to gangsta’ rap and quoting Mao Zedong?
But that’s not the general philosophy of UW students today. Now the children and grandchildren of those who lied about marching with King are sending emails calling us the “N” word and worse.
They warn virgin White girls not to date Black athletes; and to lock your doors or risk being car jacked by those “darkie thugs.”
Today, the University of Wisconsin sports KKK paraphernalia throughout the campus, noosed dolls in hallways, and racially motivated confrontations with Black students.
The situation have gotten so bad that the chancellor recently declared new policies to slow, if not stop, implementation of the new graduate course titled “White Supremacy 2016.”
Liberals around southeastern Wisconsin enjoy the benefits of running poverty programs, and it becomes obvious why politicians engineer policies to keep the poor, poor.
Organizations like ACORN confuse Black folks into thinking they are on our side as they rake in millions running programs to keep the “poor content with their situations.”
Programs that truly empower us are put on the back burner.
Is it any wonder that after ACORN’s true strategy was exposed, founders of that organization founded the Working Families Party? (Waste a minute thinking about that title, it speaks volumes if you’re conscious.)
The national party begot a Wisconsin affiliate, although the Wisconsin (spelled w.h.i.t.e.) Families Party is not really a political party at all. Instead it is a political action committee, and one of its creators, state Senator Chris Larson, is not a liberal (trust me, Bernie Sanders he is not).
Larson calls himself and his agenda, “progressive,” but in today’s “Holt Dictionary of Small Print and Political Dichotomies” that means a sheep in wolves clothing. Read the book of Matthew in your Bible, if you have one.
Several years before the formation of the White Working Families Party, Larson, as minority leader in the state Senate, removed from the Legislature’s powerful Legislative Joint Finance Committee its only African American and Milwaukee delegate, Lena Taylor.
Her crime? She didn’t subscribe to his brand of liberalism, which included, among other things, second-class citizenship for Black lawmakers, who must do his bidding.
Larson and the White Working Families Party’s platform is rooted in a neo-racist philosophy of patronization—“we know what’s good for you darkies.”
Bigots believe Black people are sinister and immoral by nature. Liberals believe we can’t do for ourselves; we are handicapped by poverty and culture.
Either way, you can call it racist.
The primary difference is the liberals need us—for votes and poverty jobs—while those at the end of the political spectrum have learned to live without us, save for our purchasing their products.
In case you were playing the music too loudly (that’s a result of the drugs they allowed to flood our community), Larson and his White Working Families Party have attempted, and to a degree have succeeded, in replacing independent and pragmatic politicians who put the Black agenda before that of the liberal scheme, with naïve pawns.
Unwittingly, (I hope) these brothers and sisters, who lack a sense of history and our culture, do the bidding, through votes and “inaction.”
That’s why the first “action” of the original group of Black politicians Larson assisted in getting elected was to amend the bylaws of the Black and Hispanic Caucus to allow White membership!
Fortunately, that redundant scheme was thwarted, resulting in the dismantlement of the Caucus (better not to have a Caucus than a “Black” caucus controlled by Whites. That’s like naming Bill Clinton the president of the Black Congressional Caucus. Now Hillary…well, for her Negroes, will find a way.
The other part of that equation is equally insidious.
Black state legislators were told—ordered—by Larson not to work with Republicans, who control the assembly and governor’s office, under any circumstances.
“Attack, attack…and attack again!,” they were mandated. But don’t shake hands, speak or smile at them, much less seek their help in passing legislation, even if it would benefit the Black community or the city of Milwaukee.
Which makes about as much sense as Bill Clinton trying to explain to Black protestors that his infamous crime bill—that put thousands of Blacks in prisons for non-violent drug addiction—was a family restoration bill.
Bravado is one thing. Pragmatism is another.
No one expects Black Dems to kiss the Republicans’ collective behinds, or in any manner, shape or form, support his or her regressive, right-wing agenda. But to sit on their butts, collect a paycheck and say they are doing their job by holding press conferences to complain, is truly preposterous.
Larson and the White Working Families Party conspired to get rid of Jason Fields because he reached across the aisle to get legislation passed that benefitted the Black community. Jason never sold his soul, but merely talked about programs of mutual concern.
Beth Coggs was next on the hit list for similar reasons. And now Larson is using another of his “protégés” to challenge Lena Taylor, because she puts her people before the party…Larson’s party.
How does he really view his minions? He reportedly called one “his nappy haired friend.” And he threatened another who looked him in the eye.
I could provide other examples of how liberals have moved further and further to the right; of our stupidity of years’ past believing a liberal couldn’t be a racist. Many are not, but there is a growing number who fit that profile, and others whose agenda is rooted in prejudices and “pimpology.”
Talk to a tainted liberal long enough, and his or her true colors emerge. Maybe it’s because they seriously feel we need a Tarzan to keep us savages in check. Maybe prejudices transcend political philosophy. Or, maybe this is all about the money and power.
I’ve long surmised that Republicans and Democrats are different wings on the same bird. The emergence of Donald Trump has pulled the wool off—or straight hair off—the sheep. Or should that be shepherd?
My grandson, who attends a suburban school, recently told me an offspring of a high profile White liberal family boldly said, “All Black teenagers are thugs or gang members. That’s why my parents are voting (voted) for Donald Trump.”
(When he asked her if he should be included in that prejudicial assumption, she said no, “he was different; one of the few good ones.”)
What’s happening in Madison is no anomaly. There are obviously as many racists on the left as there are on the right. Maybe its time we positioned ourselves in the middle, never turning our backs to the right, or left. Hotep.
(Editor’s Note: This column is the sole opinion of its author and does not necessarily reflect the views of the publisher or management of the Milwaukee Community Journal.)