McKee: What Romney Could Have Told the NAACP

Thursday, 12 Jul 2012 05:27 PM

By Clarence V. McKee

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Clarence V. McKee's Perspective: Give Mitt Romney credit for going into the NAACP Lions’ Den. He stood his ground, told the truth, weathered a chorus of boos and didn’t back down. It was a bold — and smart — move.

He told it like it is, saying that the 14.4 percent black unemployment rate was an example of how the “duration of unemployment, average income, and median family wealth are all worse for the black community.” He told the Obama worshiping crowd “. . . if I did not believe that my policies and . . . leadership would help families of color . . . more than the policies and leadership of President Obama, I would not be running for president.”

romney-at-naacp.jpg
Mitt Romney addresses the NACCP on Wednesday.
(Getty Images)
Plunging a dagger into the hearts of the NAACP’s bosom buddies in the teachers’ unions, he said “I will give the parents of every low-income and special needs student the chance to choose where their child goes to school.”

Good for him!

One would think that such sincerity would and will be appreciated. Don’t bet on it! One thing is for sure: since the non-partisan eras of NAACP leaders Roy Wilkins and my friend and former boss Benjamin L. Hooks, whom Romney quoted, the organization has become nothing more than a partisan appendage of the liberal Democratic Party establishment.

Its leaders, the Congressional Black Caucus, and others have come together as “overseers” of the liberal “plantation” which Congressman Allen West, R-Fla., has so aptly described.

On almost every issue, the NAACP leadership sides with its liberal friends against the interests of much of its own constituency. And what are those issues? As Chicago area writer Dennis Byrne wrote over a year ago regarding the situation in too many black communities: “. . . culture is described by the growth of a matriarchy, as displayed by the many grandmothers raising their daughters' children. By the absence of men in child rearing. By men who prey on young women who have never learned what to expect from decent, caring and responsible men. By the collapse of the family and the destruction of men's and women's traditional, balanced roles in making children strong enough to resist the challenges of today's broader culture of irresponsibility, casual sex, substance abuse and other plagues.”

So what side does the NAACP come down on: YES, to same-sex marriage; NO, to legislation banning race and sex-based abortions; NO, to vouchers and choice for poor parents whose children are trapped in the “schoolhouse to jailhouse pipeline” schools; and, YES, to race baiting for Democrats’ political gain at every opportunity.

Those were the shark-infested political waters Romney waded into. He did well, but, he was a bit too polite. He could have really “told it like it is” in Obama’s black America.

He could have talked about the dirty little, not so secrets that Obama, the Democrats, the Congressional Black Caucus, Eric Holder and the NAACP don’t want to talk about. A few will suffice:
  • The urban terrorism gang and drug-related violence is slaughtering so many innocent men, women, and children in our cities. In Obama’s Chicago, where his former chief of staff is mayor, more people have been killed this year than the number of U.S. troops killed thus far in Afghanistan over the same period. A day later, Vice President Joe Biden speaks to them about the environment — but not that environment.
  • According to the Children’s Defense Fund, black males born in 2001 are more than five times as likely as white males to be incarcerated some time in their lifetime. One in nine (11.7 percent) black males between ages 25 and 29 is in prison or jail.
  • Sixty-six percent of the women newly infected with HIV each year are black, according to a May study. The infection rate for black women in the major urban areas studied is comparable to the Congo; and, Obama’s Center for Disease Control states that nearly one in 30 black women will become infected with HIV in her lifetime.
Gov. Romney could also have reminded the NAACP audience of Obama’s 2007 promise that he would ensure fairness in the criminal justice system and rethink the wisdom of locking up first-time nonviolent drug offenders for decades. Of course, he has done nothing of the kind.

He also could have been as blunt as Florida Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll whom Romney invited to join him in Houston. The NAACP life member said in a statement, “President Obama’s policies are failing us (and) have made a bad situation worse for struggling African-American families.”

This is what Romney could have said. But he didn’t. But why should he if Obama didn’t show up?

The NAACP and the Black Caucus aren’t in an uproar over these issues. Biden didn’t discuss them in his remarks. Why should Romney? If blacks and the NAACP don’t ask Obama, as the Janet Jackson hit song asks, “What have you done for me lately,” why should he care?

Here’s what Romney did say: “I hope to represent all Americans, of every race, creed or sexual orientation, from the poorest to the richest and everyone in between . . . Every good cause on this earth relies in the end on a plan bigger than ours.”

Clarence V. McKee is president of McKee Communications, Inc., a government, political and media relations consulting firm in Florida. He held several positions in the Reagan administration as well as the Reagan presidential campaigns to include the Board of Directors of the Legal Services Corporation. He was also appointed chairman of the District of Columbia Reagan-Bush Campaign and he chaired the District of Columbia Delegation to the Republican National Convention in Dallas. Contact him at clarencemckee@gmail.com. Read more reports from Clarence V. McKee — Click Here Now.

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