Social Network of African American Conservatives & Moderates
If you are a Black conservative, you have most likely been called some of the most vile, hateful, racist things imaginable. Even worse, your very existence has been notably scrubbed from the annals of the mainstream media. Those that cry out loudly and often for tolerance, mutual respect and civil discourse are the very people who call for our silence, demean us as racists and idiots, and even threaten us with physical violence.
My first tea party was an eye opening experience. I attended thinking I would meet many enraged, unhinged citizens and wondering if I would run into at least one other minority. What I found was a diverse group of peaceful and patriotic citizens who truly had no concern for race. Their only goal was to make their voices heard and express their dismay at the antics of a run-away congress that have been recklessly spending away our futures over the years. Even with all the passion and the clear distaste for our government’s policies, the atmosphere was more akin to a street fair or a festival than a protest. There was a main stage set up for speakers and campaigning politicians (Republican and Democrat alike). Many people, including some elderly, had set up lawn chairs and coolers. Sign-holders weaved leisurely in and out of the crowds, stopping to take pictures of some of the more creative signs and chat with each other. Vendors lined up along the outer ring offering refreshments, pocket Constitutions and various petitions. Young mothers pushed strollers and old folks pushed walkers, but nobody pushed each other. It was a serious cause and yet, kindness and good humor permeated every interaction. About 20% of attendees were visible minorities. As we came across each other, we stopped to talk and share our experiences. I asked one woman of Phillipino decent if she had managed to be filmed by any of the dozen or so news crews lurking around. She told me no, whenever she tried to move in close with her sign the cameras immediately left. That seemed to be a running theme for the day. News crews willfully refused to interview any of us minorities who asked if they would dare show our faces on their evening report of the “racist” Tea Party movement.
I met so many kind and interesting people that day. Americans. White Americans, Asian Americans and yes, Black Americans. All proud to be there, making themselves heard, together. When we parted ways at the end of the day, the lot we had descended on by the thousands just hours earlier showed absolutely no signs that anyone had ever been there. All trash was put away and organizers made sure to clear equipment quickly and cleanly. I heard the owner of the lot telling some stragglers that it was actually CLEANER than it was before the Tea Party ever got there! Now compare that image to protesters in Wisconsin. ‘Nuff said.
It was that day that I realized the mainstream media had been lying to me about the true nature of the Tea Party. These weren’t monsters. These were concerned citizens with legitimate complaints who felt their voices were being ignored through the voting process. Which of course begged the question “Why would the media lie about this and make up such awful things about people who are clearly peaceful, law-abiding citizens?” That answer requires much more time than I have left at this point, but it is worth considering that the attack on the Tea Party movement has not let up at all. Despite a dire lack of evidence to support their claims, and even a hefty finder’s fee offered up by Andrew Breitbart for recorded evidence, the mainstream media has not backed away from their tired narratives in any form. In fact, they’ve doubled down on their bigotry and ignorance. Well, I, for one, am done letting the pseudo-journalists at MSNBC, CNN and the Huffington Post tell my story. I am done hoping for objectivity in their reporting. They cannot be counted on. Tax day is fast approaching, and that means Tea Parties. This Tea Party season I am calling on all Black conservatives to make a concerted effort to attend their local tea parties. Carpool, caravan, show up with friends and family. Show up in numbers that cannot be ignored. Show up in support and defense of our tea party brothers and sisters who have been unfairly labeled as racists and bigots. Show up with your cell phone cameras, camcorders and ipods. Become citizen journalists ala James O’Keefe, Lila Rose and Andrew Breitbart. Record the truth, and then send that truth out in waves over the Internet. Post it on social media. Email it to your friends, family and news outlets. Talk about what you saw. Let the voice of the Black Conservative be heard, loudly, proudly. No longer will we wait to be treated with the kindness and respect that we know we are obligated to show others. This is OUR people. This is OUR story. Go tell it. I’m right behind you.