I love Ward Connerly. Simple as that. Were he running for office on any party ticket, it would take some strong competition to tear my vote away. I’d even smile at a Ward Connerly/Bill “Fat Albert” Cosby ticket.
Connerly is a powerhouse dedicated to tearing down the mentality of inequality in America that masquerades as “equality” under affirmative action. After successfully passing California’s Prop 209, Connerly founded The American Civil Rights Institute together with President of National Review, Dusty Rhodes, back in 1996. The Institude was designed to educate the public on the harms of racial and gender preferences… calling for equality for *all*.
Connerly and Obama go head to head on affirmative action… with Connerly stating the policies impede the progress the US has achieved in the post Martin Luther King era. Indeed, Obama himself is an example of how far the US has come. This would be the same American that Obama says is “not what it once was”, and the America he does not want for his girls.
It does make you wonder… if Obama got this far in the America it “once was”, just what does he envision for his daughters? Opportunity certainly has not been outside his grasp.
Today’s NRO has Connerly’s article, “Senator Obama, You’re no King”, accusing him of not following the path of Martin Luther King’s “dream”.
At the time of Dr. King’s “dream” that his four little children would “one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character,” Sen. Barack Obama — a man whose mother was white and whose father was black — was just two years old.
Although he often said that he might not be with us when we got to the “Promised Land” of full freedom, Dr. King gave the country that he loved so much an assignment. Telling us that his dream was “deeply rooted in the American dream,” Dr. King urged America to “rise up and live out the true meaning of your creed: We hold these truths to be self-evident that all men are created equal.”
In the fullness of time, the American people have done precisely what Dr. King urged us to do: We have worked diligently to create a nation in which skin color is not a barrier to opportunity.
All Americans owe a debt to Martin Luther King Jr. It was his “dream” that altered America’s approach to race and profoundly changed our nation from one with different levels of citizenship for blacks and for whites to one in which equality is the law and “colorblindness” remains the national objective, despite the intrusion of “diversity” pursuits at all levels of our lives.
And, yet, despite our progress, there is one issue that stands in the way of our completely fulfilling King’s dream; and that is race-based affirmative-action preferences. On this issue, Sen. Obama has cast his lot with those who seek to ignore America’s racial progress and who, instead, prefer to sustain race and ethnic preferences that impede our progress.~~~
The question that screams out at us is why, in the face of all of America’s progress with regard to race, Sen. Obama does not fully embrace the complete fulfillment of King’s dream by supporting efforts to ensure that all Americans are “judged not by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.” Anyone who truly wants to pay homage to Dr. King should complete the journey that he charted.
Connerly had held out high hopes for Obama in the earlier stages of his campaign. But in June of this year, his desperate hopes that Sen. Barack Obama was not one of the same tired voices who peddle arguments about “institutional racism.” were dashed completely after reading an interview of Obama by USA Today’s DeWayne Wickham. In a WSJ opinion piece, Obama is No ‘Post-Racial’ Candidate, he laid out his problem with the man he had hoped would be a “transformative leader”.
Mr. Wickham, who had interviewed the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, wrote that “Obama believes America can keep its promise to women and blacks without dashing the hopes of working-class whites. He doesn’t think opportunity guarantees made to one group must come at the expense of another.” Then he went on to quote Obama campaign spokeswoman Candice Toliver, who said that “Senator Obama believes in a country in which opportunity is available to all Americans, regardless of race, gender or economic status. That’s why he opposes these [Ward Connerly] ballot initiatives, which would roll back opportunity for millions of Americans and cripple efforts to break down historic barriers to the progress of qualified women and minorities.”
Translation: Mr. Obama supports race preferences.
Obama has a more unique approach to affirmative action. He wants to widen that net to other races as well. While it sounds good on the surface, it is impossible to design what is, in essence, a preference treatment or quota without it denying opportunity to another. Or as Connerly says:
He [Obama] must also know that blacks and whites are not the only racial groups in America. Every year there are more than 48,000 applicants for one of the 4,500 seats at the University of California campus at Berkeley. Before the passage of the initiative in that state to outlaw race preferences, thousands of Asian students were denied admission so that a greater number of “underrepresented minorities” could be admitted.
Similar circumstances exist across the nation, because college admissions, public jobs and government contracts are the ultimate “zero-sum” game, and race and gender should not be the determining factors in picking winners and losers. It simply stretches credulity to argue that an “opportunity” given to one, on the basis of race, is not discrimination against another for the same reason.
As to Obama’s suggestion that he would be inclined to support race and class-based policy instead of just race-based affirmative action, Connerly still points out the difficulties of structuring such a preference system:
Obama: “I am a strong supporter of affirmative action when properly structured so that it is not just a quota, but it is acknowledging and taking into account some of the hardships and difficulties that communities of color may have experienced, continue to experience, and it also speaks to the value of diversity in all walks of American life. We are becoming a more diverse culture, and it’s something that has to be acknowledged.”
Connerly: I concur, but I might define “properly structured” differently than Obama does. What he fails to say is that it is not only “communities of color” that experience hardships and difficulties. Nor does he say how, as president, he can achieve his stated goal of uniting the American people while asking those not “of color” to look the other way when discriminated against.
If Obama is truly concerned about divisiveness, why didn’t he speak out when his foot soldiers at ACORN were taking pride in blocking our petition circulators from gathering signatures in Missouri? Their despicable tactics of harassment give new meaning to the term “divisive.”
Again, from his WSJ op-ed piece, he points out that the view of America as “institutionally racist” lies at the heart of Black Liberation Theology. Yet, Connerly notes, if that were true, how would Obama explain his, or even Hillary’s success? Thirty-six million Americans did not vote for them in the primaries because they are racist or sexist.
It’s difficult for many to grasp that affirmative action does more harm than good for post King civil rights. But Connerly continues his fight to educate not only the public, but the politicians themselves who love to triangulate the issue. From His Aug 1st NRO op-ed, “My Preferences”, he says:
Over the past ten years, no American president, Congress, legislature, or governor has acted to eliminate preferences — in other words, to enforce the 1964 Civil Rights Act, which commands the government to treat us all “without regard to race, color, national origin or sex.” In addition, the United States Supreme Court has handed down conflicting opinions about the matter.
In response, I have led the national effort to enforce the act through ballot initiatives in states that allow them. I find it interesting that the only people who consider such initiatives “divisive” are the ones who oppose them, such as Sen.Obama. Such people never seem to find preferences themselves “divisive.” Apparently, as long as those who are harmed by such policies — and those who believe preferences are fundamentally wrong — keep their mouths shut, sweet harmony will ring throughout the land.
Yes, I wish a man like Ward Connerly were running for office. But he’s very busy in the private sector… and probably accomplishing more than he could in the halls of Congress, or even in the Oval Office.
Vietnam era Navy wife, indy/conservative, and an official California escapee now residing as a red speck in the sea of Oregon blue.