Monday, February 6, 2017

Third Party and Alternative Candidates: Where You At?

So I'm just going to get right to it here.  Anyone seen or heard from Jill Stein lately?  No?  How about Gary Johnson?  Nothing?  Where are all those people who are tired of voting for the lesser of two evils?  Surely they are making a ton of noise right now.  No?  Right.  Didn't think so. 

This is why no one takes third party candidates and alternative candidates seriously.  This is why no one pays attention to them.  This is why people don't take individuals who support these candidates seriously either.  The time is ripe for third party and alternative options like Johnson, Stein, and others (and their respective parties) to make some noise.  The Democrats have proven themselves to be feckless, spineless, and clueless.  Republicans have shown themselves at best to be soulless opportunists and at worst dim witted bigots.  The field is wide open for alternative and third party candidates to step up and make some noise.  But much like the two major parties, the alternatives are proven themselves to be equally as inept and opportunistic.

Now would be the perfect time for them to make a stand.  Never has there been a more unpopular POTUS than the carnival barker who now occupies the chair.  There is a genuine and deep mistrust for both of the two major parties.  The people want and I would argue NEED alternatives.  These third party candidates should be making noise now.  They should be establishing and energizing their base now.  They should be organizing and promoting themselves and their agendas now.  They should be pushing individuals who can motivate and inspire now.  They should be making their case to the people now. 

Instead they are absent.  Silent.  With the notable exception of a few grassroots movers, shakers, and power brokers these parties aren't doing shit.  They are invisible.  They have no voice.  They have no real presence.  The general public has no idea what these parties are doing, plan to do, and what their positions are on the critical issues that are affecting the nation.  Most people have already forgotten about them.  That's not the public's fault either.  That's THEIR fault.  That's Stein's fault.  That's the Green Party's fault.  That's Johnson's fault.  They're not on the frontlines.  They're on the sidelines.

What's worse is a couple of years from now they'll pop up with their hands out looking for support.  They'll say the same tired things we hear them say every election.  They'll talk about how terrible the two main parties are.  They'll talk about voting for the lesser of two evils.  They wont say anything of substance. Then they'll lose, take the money they hustled up, and disappear until the next election cycle, much to the chagrin of those who supported their efforts and genuinely wanted change. 

If these third party and alternative candidates want to be taken seriously they need to get off the sidelines and get in the game.  Put the work in.  Don't just show up looking to raise money when the next election rolls around.  Show the people you're serious NOW.  Show them you are ready to lead NOW.  Show them you are a viable alternative NOW.  Show them a serious candidate they can get behind NOW. 

Or don't...and be quiet.  People are tired of the same of nonsense, and that includes alternative parties like the Green Party.  People aren't stupid.  They know if you're in it to win it...and you're not.  So why waste time with you?  Go hard now...or go the hell home.  Third parties where you at?

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Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Black Christians Stop Telling Us To "Love Our Enemies"

Before I start I want to state that this post is not meant to offend or hurt my Christian sisters and brothers in any way.  That said, I have to speak the truth as I see it.  This issue is very important and we have to unpack and discuss this if we ever hope to move forward.  The water is going to get deep and it's going to be hot.  But family, this is a discussion that is long overdue.

There is no nice way to say this.  So I'm going to just say it outright.  Right now many Black Christians are aiding in the oppression of Black people.  For too long now, Black preachers and Black Christians have been pacifying and placating Black people in times of crisis and moral outrage.  We're been told to love, hug, forgive, and embrace those who seek to do us great harm.  We've been told to pray for those who are actively working to undermine our progress as a people.  We're being told to reach out to those who hate us not for what we've done, but for simply being who we are.  This idea of extending love to those who hate us is not only foolish but it is dangerous and it is one of the primary reasons why we are still struggling in the 21st century.  Not only that, but when you consider that many of the pastors and religious leaders who encourage us to do this are actually in league with our enemies it ceases being foolishness and becomes treacherous and insidious.

We've all heard the scriptures.  We've all heard the empty platitudes.  If you are Black at some point in your life you've heard some Black Christian tell you to love your enemy.  You've been told to turn the other cheek.  You've been gas lighted into believing that if you fight back then YOU are wrong.  That hatred has won.  You've been gas lighted into believing that if you defend yourself you are no different than your enemy.  You've been told that you must love your enemy.  That only love can drive out hate.  These empty platitudes do not serve you.  They lock you in state of victimization.  It addles and softens your mind.  It robs you of your will to resist.  You become sheep, unable and even unwilling to defend yourself against the wolves that intend to make a meal of you.

You will not change your enemies heart by loving them.  If that were the case, racism would be a relic of the past.  Black Christians who encourage you to love those who hate and despise you do you no favors.  The onus is not on us to change the hearts of the wicked.  We will not hug, love, or pray our way out of oppression.  History teaches us this.  Such attitudes place the responsibility for change on the oppressed.  Suddenly it becomes our job to change the minds of racist and bigoted people.  It absolves those people any responsibility for their behavior.  It's foolish.  Not only that but as I said above, but when you put thought to it, it's also treacherous and insidious.

Consider this.  How many times have you heard a Black minister or Christian state that they love ISIS? How many times have you ever heard a Black minister tell a white American that they must love terrorists?  That they should pray for Al Qaeda?  That they should embrace America's enemies?  That white Americans should forgive Micah Xavier Johnson?  You don't hear that.  Ever.  You don't see Black preachers telling the families of Boston Marathon bombings or 9/11 victims to let go of their hate. You don't hear them telling them that violence solves nothing and only love can defeat hatred.  But they will tell you to hug Dylann Roof.  They will tell you to pray for white supremacists.  They will tell you to love the KKK.  They will tell you to forgive white nationalists.  They will have you running with open arms to those who wish you dead.  It is treacherous. 

Black Christians it's time to stop this.  We are facing some perilous times.  There are people in positions of great power working against us.  Now is not the time for absolution.  Now is not the time for hugs.  We need  our will and our wits about us.  We need our strength and passion.  What we do not need is you softening the hearts and minds of people with empty platitudes.  What we don't need is you using scripture to rob sisters and brothers of their will to resist and extinguishing their fire.  When all wrongs have been made right and things are as they should be, then we can talk about hugs and forgiveness.  But now is not the time.  You are hurting us.  You are weakening us.  You are making us vulnerable to those who seek to kill us.  Stop telling us to love our enemies.  At best it reveals that you are short sighted and na├»ve.  At worst, it reveals you as an agent of our oppressors.

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