Lost in the white fantasy world of right-wing extremism, Ken Blackwell and Vernon Robinson are the this year’s dynamic duo of wingnuttery. These black stormtroopers for the religious right defy all logic and reason and teeter dangerously on the edge of insanity.Obsessed with homosexuality and same-sex marriage, they have left no stone unturned in their ruthless and bigoted culture war against gay people, the most pressing issue on their narrow little their minds.
There is a so-called war on terror, high unemployment, crumbling schools, deteriorating housing and health care opportunities to be worried about for black families and all these two can be worried about is gay folk, as if they can escaped somehow.
There is a genocide in the Darfur region of Sudan that has claimed the lives of nearly 450,000 Sudanese, most of whom are Christians since 2003. The Bush Administration and its number one black foreign minstrel, Condoleezza Rice hasn’t done anything concrete to stop the killing. Isn’t that slightly more important than the “menace” of same-sex marriage?
Two million Africans died from HIV last year. They were killed by the indifference of the Industrialized World that has promised much and done little to stem the tide of disease and death. HIV is on pace to wipe out entire generations of people in sub Saharan Africa if it is not stopped. How many black lives and black families need to be destroyed in Africa and America before we realize that we need to be concerned with something other than the hateful scapegoating of gay people. Socially ostracizing gay people and preaching hate against gays and lesbians will not ever solve the problems in the black community.
The virus of theocratic fascism has infiltrated the black church and is driving a wedge between black people of faith and the black political leadership empowered by the black church during the civil rights era. Before there was a Jesse Jackson there was Rev. Adam Clayton Powell, Jr. He was Black America’s most famous preacher-politician. Elected as one of only two black members of congress in the forties, Adam Clayton Powell became Black America’s charismatic prince melding the philosophical influences of the black church into his politics for the social, political, and economic uplift of black people. He attacked Jim Crow segregation inside and outside the halls of congress with legislation and boycotts. Into this tradition of leadership came Martin Luther King, Andrew Young, John Lewis, Jesse Jackson, Bill Gray and others. They risked their lives marching to create the reality of today. This is the tradition Ken Blackwell, Vernon Robinson and their jack-booted fellow travelers ignore and desecrate at the peril of the black community.
Ken Blackwell and Vernon Robinson are enabled by a tight and growing network of black religious conservatives caught up in the ideological cul de sac of homophobia and republican politics. Some of the leading lights of black reaction are: Bishop Harry Jackson, of the High Impact Coalition, Dr. Martin Luther King’s niece, Alveda King, Dr. King’s daughter, Rev. Bernice King and her pastor, Bishop Eddie Long. Jackson, Long and Alveda King have all endorsed or participated in GOP campaigns or causes.
Ken Blackwell, Ohio’s Secretary of State is attempting to make the jump into the Governor’s mansion on the back of a thundering wave of right wing hysteria and reaction. He has sought and won the support of the most vociferous proponents of scorched earth conservatism and white supremacy. His previous service enabling Bush to steal the last Presidential election in Ohio is supposed to recommend him to the far-right but those loyal right-wing rubes are leaving him in droves this year.
The huge GOP scandals in Ohio this year have virtually destroyed Republican chances statewide if a fair vote without the interference of fixed Diebold machines is allowed to be held. As many have pointed out, Bush and his GOP don’t like black people and tickets led by them usually lose as they become entangled in suffocating webs of of wingnuttery. This year is no different, but the prominence of these black conservatives serves as a direct challenge to the democratic party to put forward more black and brown candidates for statewide offices that people of color usually shy away from.
Vernon Robinson, a former Winston-Salem, NC alderman, is just an unfathomable lunatic that is in dire need of psychiatric help. Born into the middle class, the son of a Tuskegee Airman, he has absolutely no excuse for his far right extremism and white supremacist worship. Yes, that is a picture of Vernon with Jesse-I-hate-blacks-and-gays-Helms.
A fascist firebrand, he specializes in shock politics and infammatory rhetoric that fixates on sex. His political ads make Kerry Healey’s look subtle in comparison. A frequent candidate for state and national office, he often loses but has raised millions from conservative knuckle draggers.
My favorite ad of the season is this one from the Robinson campaign which says it all