Black Americans scarce at GOP convention

Herb Boyd | 8/27/2020, midnight
Opening night at the 2020 Republican National Convention featured several prominent African Americans, none more outspoken and rhetorically consistent a ...
President Donald Trump Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

Opening night at the 2020 Republican National Convention featured several prominent African Americans, none more outspoken and rhetorically consistent a Republican than Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina. “My grandfather’s 99th birthday would have been tomorrow,” he said, citing his family as a pivot. “Growing up, he had to cross the street if a white person was coming. He suffered the indignity of being forced out of school as a third grader to pick cotton, and never learned to read or write. Yet, he lived to see his grandson become the first African American to be elected to both the United States House and Senate.

“Our family went from cotton to congress in one lifetime,” Scott continued. “And that’s why I believe the next American century can be better than the last.

“There are millions of families like mine across this nation...full of potential seeking to live the American Dream. And I’m here tonight to tell you that supporting the Republican ticket gives you the best chance of making that dream a reality.”

Former NFL great Herschel Walker was equally effusive in his support of the GOP and Trump, who before the evening was over would be the party’s presidential nominee. Walker said, “Growing up in the Deep South, I’ve seen racism up close. I know what it is––and it isn’t Donald Trump. Just because someone loves and respects the flag, our national anthem and our country doesn’t mean they don’t care about social justice.

“I care about all of those things,” Walker added. “So does Donald Trump. He shows how much he cares about social justice in the Black community through his actions and his actions speaks louder than stickers or slogans on a jersey.”

When Vernon Jones, a Black state representative from Georgia, appeared on the agenda it was obviously meant to counter the Democrats move of inviting Republicans to speak at its convention. “Why is a lifelong Democrat speaking at the Republican National Convention? That’s a fair question,” Jones asserted. “And here’s your answer: the Democratic Party does not want Black people to leave the mental plantation they’ve had us on for decades.”

Jones said: “I have news for Joe Biden: We are free, we are free people with free minds, and I’m part of a large and growing segment of the Black community who are independent thinkers, and we believe that Donald Trump is the president that America needs to lead us forward.”

Kim Klacik, a Black woman and a Maryland congressional nominee, horned in with her GOP support, however brief. “Black people don’t have to vote Democrat,” she said in her pre-recorded speech from Baltimore. “I want Baltimore to be an example to Republicans around the country that we can compete in our inner cities if we reach out to the citizens and deliver real results.”

Only Dr. Ben Carson, HUD Secretary, remains among the notable Black Americans slated to speak at the RNC, which he will do at the closing on Thursday. Clearly, the dark forecast Trump has envisioned if Joe Biden and Kamala Harris are elected has nothing to do with skin color.