Not a lot of meaningful change has occurred since George Floyd wound up dead at the knee of a Minneapolis Police Officer on May 25 and thousands of protesters flooded the streets of our nation’s major cities crying out for social justice and an end to systematic racism in the United States.
While there are less businesses standing in certain parts of Minneapolis and fewer statues of historic figures perched outside various public locales throughout the country, very little action has been taken to address real issues facing real people.
And if the start of the Joe Biden era is any indication, it’s going to be business as usual in Washington D.C. moving forward as leaders of several national civil rights groups, including the NAACP and the National Urban League, are already upset with the presumptive president-elect.
Officials from those groups and more requested a meeting with Biden three weeks ago to discuss race issues and his potential cabinet appointments but to date no meeting has taken place while plenty of typical D.C. lifers have already been announced for important positions with his administration.
“You’re talking about the kind of issues that are of major concern for Black people,” Melanie Campbell, president of the National Coalition on Black Civic Participation, said in an interview with USA Today this week. “We need to be… at his decision-making table. And the diversity needs to be reflected from the top, the Cabinet itself. Who is running the agencies? All of that matters.”
It does matter but it seems the swamp has no time for such discussions at the moment and maybe not any time soon.
Unfortunately, it’s not out of the ordinary for an incoming president of either party to lean on certain voting demos to get elected and then conveniently forget about those voters once they’ve reached the top of the mountain.
It also doesn’t surprise me that there has been very little movement on legislation introduced in early June to address some of the issues that were brought forward in the wake of the Floyd incident.
The Justice and Policing Act of 2020, which was touted by many a Democratic power player — including Sen. Amy Klobuchar — as an important step in the right direction, is still sitting somewhere in Washington D.C. collecting dust. That might be because while it addresses a number of policies and issues regarding policing practices and law enforcement accountability, it doesn’t really address the deeper issues facing the black community.
It is mostly just words — lots and lots of words — which usually don’t mean much when pushed from the lips of lifetime politicians.
Actions speak much louder.
It seems some issues only get attention when the noise generated by those seeking a change can benefit one party or the other and then it only gets enough attention to pique the interest of important voting blocks.
Just not too much attention — you don’t want to alienate the other blocks.
Politicians love to bounce around buzzwords and fake empathy like a rubber ball on a string just enough to move the needle.
Then they put the paddle down and move on.
Most of the time that tactic works for the general public, many of whom are too consumed with their own problems to really sink their teeth into an issue any deeper than the surface.
This time, however, a guy with the knowledge, experience, and influence necessary to cut through the bull jumped into the fray and accidentally exposed the hypocrisy of Washington D.C. along the way.
Controversial rapper and actor Ice Cube has been making the political rounds for a few months now pushing the Contract with Black America, a document described as a way to “start the hard conversations” about racial inequality in America.
Within the contract, several issues are raised, and potential solutions outlined in regard to lending reform, judicial reform, police reform, black responsibility and more.
Cube, who was a founding member of one of the most influential rap and hip-hop groups of all time, NWA, has been at the forefront of documenting the issues within the Black community through his music since the early 1990s.
When he started promoting The Contract with Black America this past summer, Cube said he wanted to meet with representatives from both sides of the political aisle because to him, the contract is not about politics as usual, it is about action.
He was given the runaround by the Democrats and representatives from the Biden campaign. They told him they’d take a look at it after the election.
Undaunted, and not one to play the game according to the rules, Cube went to President Donald Trump’s people, and what do you know, the president ended up putting some of the ideas mapped out in the contract into his own plan for black America, entitled, “The Platinum Plan.”
Of course, thanks to an obvious media bias, details of the Platinum Plan or even Cube’s involvement wasn’t widely reported. When Cube himself went public with the information, many of those who lean left turned on him for even communicating with Trump (including talking head Chris Cuomo), refusing to acknowledge the positive step of the president taking the time to listen to the rapper and actor and then including some of his ideas within the framework of the Platinum Plan.
Some people just don’t like when other people mess with the status quo and do things their own way.
Now with the election over, we will see how serious the swamp takes Cube or the racial issues that dominated the news cycles this past summer. My guess is you won’t hear much about any of it until 2022.