Are Loaded Questions and Clenched Fists the New Politics?
by Mychal Massie (bio)
"What kind of nigger are you?"
Like "have you stopped beating your wife?," it's a question with no right answer.
The question is even harder to answer when it's being yelled at you by one of two angry men who are over six feet tall and together weigh close to 500 pounds (and you weigh just 130).
Making it even more uncomfortable is that all of you are black!
Welcome to the world of Kenneth Gladney.
This past August 6, Gladney was handing out pens and buttons outside a St. Louis-area town hall meeting sponsored by Representative Russ Carnahan (D-MO). People there were concerned about Obama policies such as the cap-and-trade energy tax, runaway "stimulus" spending and a government takeover of health care. Despite the crowd's anxiety, Gladney - by all reports - was far from what one might consider "angry."
Leave the anger to Elston McCowan and Perry Molens. McCowan and Molens work for the Service Employees International Union. When town hall meetings became uncomfortable for Obama-friendly lawmakers, the SEIU essentially became the White House's muscle.
According to the recently-released police report from the Carnahan event, witnesses saw McCowan berating Gladney. That's when McCowan asked the previously-mentioned loaded question. McCowan then punched Gladney in the face. Molens grabbed Gladney by the collar and dragged him over the table, where they both proceeded to punch and kick Gladney.
McCowan and Molens were arrested for assault and interfering with an officer (formal charges were filed on November 25). Gladney went to the hospital with a sore shoulder.
A black man was beaten for expressing his political beliefs. Isn't that a hate crime?
Where are the Jacksons and the Sharptons calling the SEIU leadership on the carpet and demanding answers? Where are the Congressional Black Caucus demands for hearings and investigations? Why hasn't Obama said these union thugs "acted stupidly"?
Unfortunately, the SEIU seems immune from scrutiny. When the White House visitor logs were recently released, SEIU president Andy Stern was Obama's most frequent guest. SEIU chapters also work hand-in-glove with ACORN.
It also must be remembered that Kenneth Gladney is a black conservative. Hate crimes and civil rights protections don't always seem to apply to blacks who don't toe the liberal line.
As the chairman of the black conservative network Project 21, I'm no stranger to such abuse.
I've been called "Uncle Tom" more times than I care to - and can - remember. I've had my face photoshopped onto an Aunt Jemima box.
Like Ward Connerly, Walter Williams, Reverend Jesse Lee Peterson, Condoleezza Rice, Juan Williams (when he strays from the liberal plantation), General Colin Powell (until he began criticizing Republicans) and others, I have been called names such as "house negro" and considered a race traitor - as if being black makes us politically distinct from the rest of humanity.
Can't we all get along?
With the exception of Reverend Peterson - who actually was roughed up by associates of Jesse Jackson - most black conservatives have been spared from the indignity suffered upon Gladney.
But this may change.
On August 6, the Obama White House told liberal senators they had to be more aggressive with critics. According to the Politico newspaper, Obama deputy chief of staff Jim Messina said "punch back twice as hard."
Gladney reportedly didn't even raise a hand in anger that very night before he was pummeled by Obama loyalists.
Nixon had a fabled enemies list, and it's rumored Obama has something similar (remember [email protected]?). Conservative groups were routinely audited by the IRS during the Clinton Administration.
Now it seems violence is approved against Obama critics.
Obama's election was considered a civil rights milestone, yet his staff that now seeks to essentially turn a firehose on dissent.
Meet the new boss. Same as the old boss.
# # #
Mychal Massie is the chairman of the black leadership network Project 21. Comments may be sent to [email protected].
Published by The National Center for Public Policy Research. Reprints
permitted provided source is credited. New Visions Commentaries
reflect the views of their author, and not necessarily those of
Project 21 or the National Center for Public Policy Research.
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