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Sunday, September 24, 2006

African-Americans a monolithic voting bloc?
Don't bet on it....

I was just over at Daily Kos and commenting on baltimoremom's post MD Sen Why would black Democrats support Steele. My comment to her post was a basic concern about the way the Democratic Party treats it's African-American base and how easily it would be to take them for granted. One has to hope the Democratic Party does not assume they are a monolithic voting bloc by nature. They are, after all, intelligent human beings that make decisions on their very own. Imagine that. There is a racist under tone to thinking otherwise and believing they are like sheep and vote in lock step on que like somekind of robots within the Democratic Party. (Though there is a tendency to think of the GOP base like that!) We as Democrats had damn well better remember that.

Another reason is the growth of the African American middle class. Economic factors vary and have verying affects on voter outlook. I am not implying that prosperity automatically makes one drift toward the GOP. (A perfect example is myself, as I get older and better situated economically, the more entrenced I become as a Democrat underlining my liberal beliefs). What I AM saying is once you are in an economic position that gives you some discretionary spending, it allows one to factor in tangental reasons that have nothing to do with politics (i.e. religion, geography, domestic situation and e.t.c) to affect party affiliation or individual decisions on a candidate without taking in consideration party labels.

I'm always angry when the GOP makes claims (i.e. Affirmative Action policies) the Democratic Party wants to treat African-Americans as a special interest group and give them special priviliges other Americans do not enjoy. As Democrats we need to get a grip and start addressing issues that affect us all as human beings and pay special attention to issues that are of concern to African Americans (i.e. voter registration and polling access without being challenged) and let them know the Democratic Party is the party of EVERYONE without taking SOME for granted. All one can ask for is a level playing field and equal access to the American Dream. Or what's left of it before the GOP finishes with it.