Law School Discussion

Specific Groups => Black Law Students => Topic started by: obamacon on January 23, 2007, 02:56:42 PM

Title: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: obamacon on January 23, 2007, 02:56:42 PM
Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
By: Josephine Hearn
January 23, 2007 12:32 PM EST

As a white liberal running in a majority African American district, Tennessee Democrat Stephen I. Cohen made a novel pledge on the campaign trail last year: If elected, he would seek to become the first white member of the Congressional Black Caucus.

Now that he's a freshman in Congress, Cohen has changed his plans. He said he has dropped his bid after several current and former caucus members made it clear to him that whites need not apply.

"I think they're real happy I'm not going to join," said Cohen, who succeeded Rep. Harold Ford, D-Tenn., in the Memphis district. "It's their caucus and they do things their way. You don't force your way in. You need to be invited."

Cohen said he became convinced that joining the caucus would be "a social faux pas" after seeing news reports that former Rep. William Lacy Clay Sr., D-Mo., a co-founder of the caucus, had circulated a memo telling members it was "critical" that the group remain "exclusively African-American."

Other members, including the new chairwoman, Rep. Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick, D-Mich., and Clay's son, Rep. William Lacy Clay, D-Mo., agreed.

"Mr. Cohen asked for admission, and he got his answer. ... It's time to move on," the younger Clay said. "It's an unwritten rule. It's understood. It's clear."

The bylaws of the caucus do not make race a prerequisite for membership, a House aide said, but no non-black member has ever joined.

Rep. Pete Stark, D-Calif., who is white, tried in 1975 when he was a sophomore representative and the group was only six years old.

"Half my Democratic constituents were African American. I felt we had interests in common as far as helping people in poverty," Stark said. "They had a vote, and I lost. They said the issue was that I was white, and they felt it was important that the group be limited to African Americans."

Cohen remains hopeful, though, that he can forge relationships with black members in other ways.

"When I saw the reticence, I didn't want anyone to misunderstand my motives. Politically, it was the right thing to do," he said. "There are other ways to gain fellowship with people I respect."

Cohen won his seat in the 60 percent black district as the only white candidate in a crowded primary field. If he faces a primary challenge next year from a black candidate, as expected, some Black Caucus members may work to defeat him.

A similar situation arose in 2004 after redistricting added more black voters to the Houston district of former Rep. Chris Bell, D-Texas.

Although House tradition discourages members of the same party from working against each other, about a dozen black lawmakers contributed to Bell's opponent, Rep. Al Green, D-Texas, the eventual victor. Even Bell's Houston neighbor, Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee, D-Texas, campaigned against him.

One black member who criticized his colleagues for sandbagging Bell was Cohen's predecessor, Harold Ford.

"You have an incumbent, and you don't support an incumbent? It was inappropriate," Ford told Congressional Quarterly in 2004.

Cohen has won high marks for hiring African Americans. A majority of his staff is African American, he said, including his chief of staff.

http://dyn.politico.com/printstory.cfm?uuid=4AF8124E-3048-5C12-006558D2C4DED716
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: A. on January 23, 2007, 03:13:49 PM
Hmm.  I don't see why he shouldn't join, if his goals are aligned with those of the CBC.  Unless they consider it to be some sort of social club (which they could still maintain independent of advancing political interests), then I don't see the problem.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: eeyore on January 23, 2007, 03:15:13 PM
Ha, its cool, you black people cant join our WHITE caucus!

Its funny, just imagine what would happen if there even WERE a white caucus.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: A. on January 23, 2007, 03:17:15 PM
It's called Congress.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: eeyore on January 23, 2007, 03:19:22 PM
It's called Congress.

You are funny.  There are black people in congress.

Im being serious, imagine the heat that an all-white caucus would receive from the ACLU and NAACP.

Hypocrisy is hilarious
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Statistic on January 23, 2007, 03:21:43 PM
Not a fan.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: A. on January 23, 2007, 03:29:09 PM
Hmm.  I don't see why he shouldn't join, if his goals are aligned with those of the CBC.  Unless they consider it to be some sort of social club (which they could still maintain independent of advancing political interests), then I don't see the problem.

it's a tough issue. if two black congress-persons disagree about black issues, there's nevertheless some element of trust. but what if it's instead two members of the CBC and one's black and the other's white? still the same level of trust? enough to caucus together?

there's also the question of how many non-black members could be admitted into the CBC. the demand to join would be high enough that it may become minority-black. that would in turn raise the spectre of co-option.

The latter question could be resolved by restricting membership to those who represent majority black districts.  As for the first question, perhaps you have a point.  But if the white person is looking out for his constituents' interests, then his views should still be respected.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Burning Sands, Esq. on January 23, 2007, 03:32:50 PM
It's called Congress.

You are funny.  There are black people in congress.

Im being serious, imagine the heat that an all-white caucus would receive from the ACLU and NAACP.

Hypocrisy is hilarious


No seriously, it is called Congress.  Namely, the Senate.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: obamacon on January 23, 2007, 03:44:06 PM
What would your reaction be if I reversed your post?

it's a tough issue. if two white congress-persons disagree about white issues, there's nevertheless some element of trust. but what if it's instead two members of the CWC and one's white and the other's black? still the same level of trust? enough to caucus together?

there's also the question of how many non-white members could be admitted into the CWC. the demand to join would be high enough that it may become minority-white. that would in turn raise the spectre of co-option.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: One Step Ahead on January 23, 2007, 03:46:40 PM
I still think you would find that a majority of representatives from majority black districts are white...

Mo and Opoto hit me up
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Statistic on January 23, 2007, 03:58:14 PM
I still think you would find that a majority of representatives from majority black districts are white...

Mo and Opoto hit me up

How you gonna say hit me up and not be online?
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 23, 2007, 03:59:46 PM
It's called Congress.

You are funny.  There are black people in congress.

Im being serious, imagine the heat that an all-white caucus would receive from the ACLU and NAACP.

Hypocrisy is hilarious



he has a point...
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: ((A))P on January 23, 2007, 04:03:30 PM
It's called Congress.

this is on point...
why is it that white folks are still threatened by folks of color, especially Black folk getting together on their own. back in the day they used to have laws against Blacks congregating in groups (of course they feared insurrection). To this day they try to infiltrate, some even crying about reverse discrimination (which of course does not exist).the most pertinent question in this story is for the whites who are bothered by it, i ask them to interrogate their motives and reactions. honestly, why does this bother you?
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Statistic on January 23, 2007, 04:08:41 PM
Yeah, I don't like this on behalf of the CBC. Seems like the organization wants to feel comfortable saying the things they say in the meetings and perhaps a white person would disturbed that climate. I can understand that, but it should be about the people they represent and if these cats are really about helping black folk, surely getting this nilla in the room so they can get him on board with the program would help. But maybe they can talk to him in other forums.

Still doesn't sit well with me though.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 23, 2007, 04:12:17 PM
It's called Congress.

this is on point...
why is it that white folks are still threatened by folks of color, especially Black folk getting together on their own. back in the day they used to have laws against Blacks congregating in groups (of course they feared insurrection). To this day they try to infiltrate, some even crying about reverse discrimination (which of course does not exist).the most pertinent question in this story is for the whites who are bothered by it, i ask them to interrogate their motives and reactions. honestly, why does this bother you?


your kind of all over the place here...why do you assume he's threatened i didn't read anything in the article to suggest that his motive was to "infilitrate" this threatening black organization...in fact he seemed to get it...and didn't seem to be too offended...but thats him some one else may decide to make it an issue so....while i understand and agree with the necessity and sentiment behind all black organizations, particularly of a social sort...i don't really see how you can justify excluding a member of Congress/Senate from participating in a government sanctioned organization based soley on race...i think that allowing  those who represent predominately black districts to join is an excellent idea
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 23, 2007, 04:22:02 PM
What would your reaction be if I reversed your post?

it's a tough issue. if two white congress-persons disagree about white issues, there's nevertheless some element of trust. but what if it's instead two members of the CWC and one's white and the other's black? still the same level of trust? enough to caucus together?

there's also the question of how many non-white members could be admitted into the CWC. the demand to join would be high enough that it may become minority-white. that would in turn raise the spectre of co-option.

That it would be a completely different situation, and not parallel? Whites are the majority, and hold the majority of political power. That's why they don't need their own caucus. Doesn't seem that complicated. I never understand how that's supposed to be a compelling argument. "But what if whites kept out other races!" They effectively do. They just don't need special rules to do so.



he's got a point too
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Young Esq. on January 23, 2007, 04:24:15 PM
I must put on the record my disgust with the Black Caucus over this issue.  I can understand testing a Majority aspirant for sincerity, but once that is established they need to let him/her into the fold.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: blk_reign on January 23, 2007, 04:30:47 PM
"Mr. Cohen asked for admission, and he got his answer. ... It's time to move on," the younger Clay said. "It's an unwritten rule. It's understood. It's clear."

now that's just trifling.. how's that for a CBC soundbite for 07? SMH :(.. negroes get some "power" and they try to turn it into an all white country club ::)....

I can understand having an organization like CBC geared towards Blacks.. it's needed.. just as there's a need for BLSA and BSA organizations in college...however to blatantly say.. no.. u're white.. u can't be a part of our circle is just trifling and racist on so many levels...

comparing this to Congress and Senate is inappropriate since we actually vote on these members during elections.. regardless of how pitiful the voting system may be...
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 23, 2007, 04:32:08 PM
I must put on the record my disgust with the Black Caucus over this issue.  I can understand testing a Majority aspirant for sincerity, but once that is established they need to let him/her into the fold.


i agree...might be a bit of a highjack but do you all think that maybe the older generation say those who came of age during the civil rights era are getting a little obsolete...not that the struggle is obsolete but the methods and mindset...sometimes i read things like this and some of the stuff some of them are saying about Obama and other issues...im just like maan times have changed all that "blacks this and whites that" i mean we know racism exists and all that...but do yall think that maybe its time to let some of that stuff go...im not saying forget it...but a lot of them, there are some exceptions, just don't seem to be in tune with the educated/professional future black leaders mindset anymore...a lot of them do seem to be "poverty pimps"...maybe its just me feel free to disagree
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Young Esq. on January 23, 2007, 04:35:58 PM
I must put on the record my disgust with the Black Caucus over this issue.  I can understand testing a Majority aspirant for sincerity, but once that is established they need to let him/her into the fold.


i agree...might be a bit of a highjack but do you all think that maybe the older generation say those who came of age during the civil rights era are getting a little obsolete...not that the struggle is obsolete but the methods and mindset...sometimes i read things like this and some of the stuff some of them are saying about Obama and other issues...im just like maan times have changed all that "blacks this and whites that" i mean we know racism exists and all that...but do yall think that maybe its time to let some of that stuff go...im not saying forget it...but a lot of them, there are some exceptions, just don't seem to be in tune with the educated/professional future black leaders mindset anymore...a lot of them do seem to be "poverty pimps"...maybe its just me feel free to disagree

I agree.  Our generation has different racial issues than our predecessors.  Therefore, we view racial issue differently.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 23, 2007, 04:48:04 PM
I doubt that this is a generational thing.

How, in practice, could the CBC prevent itself from being flooded by southern republicans? 'Test their sincerity'? how?

this is a caucus, not a committee.




i understand its a caucus but we're talking about congressmen and senators here...i mean come on now...where is this whole takeover thing coming from...from what i've heard he's the only guy that asked...he seemed like his intentions were genuine...im with blackreign on this there answer lets you know that its not about anybodies best interest its about we want to be petty because we can...just sounds 'ignant to me
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: shaz on January 23, 2007, 04:58:26 PM
I must put on the record my disgust with the Black Caucus over this issue.  I can understand testing a Majority aspirant for sincerity, but once that is established they need to let him/her into the fold.


i agree...might be a bit of a highjack but do you all think that maybe the older generation say those who came of age during the civil rights era are getting a little obsolete...not that the struggle is obsolete but the methods and mindset...sometimes i read things like this and some of the stuff some of them are saying about Obama and other issues...im just like maan times have changed all that "blacks this and whites that" i mean we know racism exists and all that...but do yall think that maybe its time to let some of that stuff go...im not saying forget it...but a lot of them, there are some exceptions, just don't seem to be in tune with the educated/professional future black leaders mindset anymore...a lot of them do seem to be "poverty pimps"...maybe its just me feel free to disagree

I agree.  Our generation has different racial issues than our predecessors.  Therefore, we view racial issue differently.

big mistake. don't ever lose that 'healthy' skepticism.  ;)
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 23, 2007, 05:00:57 PM
yeah, sure there's a cringe factor, but there's still a difficult issue underneath it.

you let one guy in and it's hard to see how you could prevent anyone else from joining, including every 'conservative' republican congressperson from the south.

why wold they want to join? because it would innoculate them against competition from opponents who actually do care about black issues, including from competition offered by black candidates -- "I'm a member of the CBC; I care and I'm on it". How's the opponent supposed to answer to that?

Letting even a sincere white person into the CBC would be good PR, but bad politics.


well that would be why he would have to represent a majority black district...if he don't do right he's out (ask cynthis mckinney)...plus seems like a lot to go through too...i mean they don't have to innoculate themselves from anything if the last 8 years have shown us anything its that if they want to pull some ish they ain't gotta sneak into the black caucus to do it...
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: blk_reign on January 23, 2007, 05:14:20 PM
here's where your argument is faulty... if these "conservative republican congresspersons" (his words not mine lol) wanted to join they simply would have tried... and they have not...CBC was founded in 1969.. if folks wanted to "takeover".. they would have done so by now

people are always marching and talking about how our voices are not heard..yet assuming that this one white congressman actually was concerned about issues that are affecting the black community... we (or rather the CBC) in their moment of taking a stand and not looking beyond the color line.. turned their back on someone that very well could have been an asset...

CBC hasn't done much in all these yrs.. perhaps it's time to change the methods in which they choose to tackle on issues that directly affect us...

yeah, sure there's a cringe factor, but there's still a difficult issue underneath it.

you let one guy in and it's hard to see how you could prevent anyone else from joining, including every 'conservative' republican congressperson from the south.

why wold they want to join? because it would innoculate them against competition from opponents who actually do care about black issues, including from competition offered by black candidates -- "I'm a member of the CBC; I care and I'm on it". How's the opponent supposed to answer to that?

Letting even a sincere white person into the CBC would be good PR, but bad politics.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: blk_reign on January 23, 2007, 05:54:49 PM
while they were meeting and thought of it as a bad play..they should have found a better way to vocalize their decision to prohibit him from becoming a member... seriously..we all know that if a white organization stated something of that magnitude.. it simply would receive some backlash.. there'd be some sort of news segment or something... and that's a problem...

CBC is smelling themselves a bit too hard on this one.. and it's something that one cannot justify
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: ImVinny! on January 23, 2007, 06:19:57 PM
"Mr. Cohen asked for admission, and he got his answer. ... It's time to move on," the younger Clay said. "It's an unwritten rule. It's understood. It's clear."

now that's just trifling.. how's that for a CBC soundbite for 07? SMH :(.. negroes get some "power" and they try to turn it into an all white country club ::)....

I can understand having an organization like CBC geared towards Blacks.. it's needed.. just as there's a need for BLSA and BSA organizations in college...however to blatantly say.. no.. u're white.. u can't be a part of our circle is just trifling and racist on so many levels...

comparing this to Congress and Senate is inappropriate since we actually vote on these members during elections.. regardless of how pitiful the voting system may be...

We usually don't agree on things, but I am agreeing with you on this. I think that it is racist for them to deny him admission to the caucus. The job of a congressman is to represent the people that elected him. If the person elected had been black would s/he be admitted to the caucus if s/he wanted? I think so, and this would show that they are reducing it to an issue of the color of the man's skin, and I think we can all agree that that should NOT be allowed.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: ImVinny! on January 23, 2007, 06:20:27 PM
I must put on the record my disgust with the Black Caucus over this issue.  I can understand testing a Majority aspirant for sincerity, but once that is established they need to let him/her into the fold.


i agree...might be a bit of a highjack but do you all think that maybe the older generation say those who came of age during the civil rights era are getting a little obsolete...not that the struggle is obsolete but the methods and mindset...sometimes i read things like this and some of the stuff some of them are saying about Obama and other issues...im just like maan times have changed all that "blacks this and whites that" i mean we know racism exists and all that...but do yall think that maybe its time to let some of that stuff go...im not saying forget it...but a lot of them, there are some exceptions, just don't seem to be in tune with the educated/professional future black leaders mindset anymore...a lot of them do seem to be "poverty pimps"...maybe its just me feel free to disagree

What's a "poverty pimp"?
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: ImVinny! on January 23, 2007, 06:22:24 PM
yeah, sure there's a cringe factor, but there's still a difficult issue underneath it.

you let one guy in and it's hard to see how you could prevent anyone else from joining, including every 'conservative' republican congressperson from the south.

why wold they want to join? because it would innoculate them against competition from opponents who actually do care about black issues, including from competition offered by black candidates -- "I'm a member of the CBC; I care and I'm on it". How's the opponent supposed to answer to that?

Letting even a sincere white person into the CBC would be good PR, but bad politics.

Isn't this the same type of argument used when people started talkign about hiring blacks? I have always thought it was a stupid reason to keep people out of things.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 23, 2007, 06:41:18 PM
I must put on the record my disgust with the Black Caucus over this issue.  I can understand testing a Majority aspirant for sincerity, but once that is established they need to let him/her into the fold.


i agree...might be a bit of a highjack but do you all think that maybe the older generation say those who came of age during the civil rights era are getting a little obsolete...not that the struggle is obsolete but the methods and mindset...sometimes i read things like this and some of the stuff some of them are saying about Obama and other issues...im just like maan times have changed all that "blacks this and whites that" i mean we know racism exists and all that...but do yall think that maybe its time to let some of that stuff go...im not saying forget it...but a lot of them, there are some exceptions, just don't seem to be in tune with the educated/professional future black leaders mindset anymore...a lot of them do seem to be "poverty pimps"...maybe its just me feel free to disagree

What's a "poverty pimp"?


lets see if i can explain intelligently its kind of a catch all...its a term given to black leaders who tend to jump on issues that are not really important in the scheme of things but that sound good and get people excited...they also tend to, as we have discussed before, excuse blacks for whatever irresponsible bull ish they do with the old standard black people can't do this or don't have that because the white man is keeping us down and for no other reason...they attack other blacks who stress personal responsibilty, accountability, and education as  blaming the victim i.e. bill cosby...its called poverty pimp because it seems to be an effective tool in poor black communities...they get on tv and say things like "black people are..." presuming to speak for all black people because we of course all think and look alike...whenever there is a big racial incident they call all the major news outlets so they can get on all the news channels and give the "black point of view"...im sorry this in not my best work im a little tired...if anybody else wants to expound please do...maybe an example is worth a thousand words...AL SHARPTON and JESSE JACKSON
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: ImVinny! on January 23, 2007, 06:44:49 PM
Thanks jarhead
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: iman on January 23, 2007, 08:57:46 PM
i don't know if i necessarily disagree with the CBC. But, I do think that after reading articles about what happens in Congress and in the Senate there is alot of show and not that much substantive stuff going on. on one hand, you would think having more people would be good. but on the other, it seems like stuff like that almost doesn't make a difference. given the fact that most of them are old heads, they know alot more about the politics inside Congress than we do. maybe they had a reason for doing what they did. i don't know for sure but I don't think that all of them fall into the category of poverty pimps for that reason. i mean was JC Watts a member of the CBC? I don't think he was...there has to be some type of ideological litmus test that is used right?
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Burning Sands, Esq. on January 24, 2007, 11:10:21 AM
I must put on the record my disgust with the Black Caucus over this issue.  I can understand testing a Majority aspirant for sincerity, but once that is established they need to let him/her into the fold.


i agree...might be a bit of a highjack but do you all think that maybe the older generation say those who came of age during the civil rights era are getting a little obsolete...not that the struggle is obsolete but the methods and mindset...sometimes i read things like this and some of the stuff some of them are saying about Obama and other issues...im just like maan times have changed all that "blacks this and whites that" i mean we know racism exists and all that...but do yall think that maybe its time to let some of that stuff go...im not saying forget it...but a lot of them, there are some exceptions, just don't seem to be in tune with the educated/professional future black leaders mindset anymore...a lot of them do seem to be "poverty pimps"...maybe its just me feel free to disagree

What's a "poverty pimp"?


lets see if i can explain intelligently its kind of a catch all...its a term given to black leaders who tend to jump on issues that are not really important in the scheme of things but that sound good and get people excited...they also tend to, as we have discussed before, excuse blacks for whatever irresponsible bull ish they do with the old standard black people can't do this or don't have that because the white man is keeping us down and for no other reason...they attack other blacks who stress personal responsibilty, accountability, and education as  blaming the victim i.e. bill cosby...its called poverty pimp because it seems to be an effective tool in poor black communities...they get on tv and say things like "black people are..." presuming to speak for all black people because we of course all think and look alike...whenever there is a big racial incident they call all the major news outlets so they can get on all the news channels and give the "black point of view"...im sorry this in not my best work im a little tired...if anybody else wants to expound please do...maybe an example is worth a thousand words...AL SHARPTON and JESSE JACKSON


I really LOL'd at this.  [shaking head]
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: iman on January 24, 2007, 02:42:34 PM
i always thought of poverty pimps as those who do a job that is supposedly based on social welfare, but they do it just to get a check. meaning a social worker who wants to keep people in the system b/c it keeps their job going. and in that sense, Al might be considered a poverty pimp b/c he wants controversies to continue b/c if there weren't any controversies, then he wouldn't make any money. people wouldn't support the national action network (his organization) if there wasn't some type of ruckus being raised constantly. but i just want to reiterate to imvinny and others that some of us don't agree with bill cosby b/c we don't think his speeches are based in fact, nor are they built for the purposes of uplift or encouragement. as a matter of fact, I actually think of Cosby as a poverty pimp. If he didn't have these "poor black children dragging backpacks with no books" to lament over and tear down, how much would he be making in terms of speaking engagements in 2007? just a thought...
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 24, 2007, 03:52:52 PM
i always thought of poverty pimps as those who do a job that is supposedly based on social welfare, but they do it just to get a check. meaning a social worker who wants to keep people in the system b/c it keeps their job going. and in that sense, Al might be considered a poverty pimp b/c he wants controversies to continue b/c if there weren't any controversies, then he wouldn't make any money. people wouldn't support the national action network (his organization) if there wasn't some type of ruckus being raised constantly. but i just want to reiterate to imvinny and others that some of us don't agree with bill cosby b/c we don't think his speeches are based in fact, nor are they built for the purposes of uplift or encouragement. as a matter of fact, I actually think of Cosby as a poverty pimp. If he didn't have these "poor black children dragging backpacks with no books" to lament over and tear down, how much would he be making in terms of speaking engagements in 2007? just a thought...


do you think that bill cosby who drops 30 and 40 million a pop on HBCUs is really sweating how much he makes in speaking engagements...and his comments are towards the adults who dont give a damn...more so than the children
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 24, 2007, 04:45:43 PM
ok might be a little late but now that i am well rested...a "poverty pimp" (i didn't coin this term its been around for a while not sure who originated it but it was originally directed towards jesse)  is all of the things i previously described...but i think a better answer is...basically many black people (i would say educated professionals but its not exclusive to that group) are tired of hearing the same old it's whitey excuse...those who seem to be most willing to hold on to that are often poor blacks...though not exclusively as we have seen on this board...these same, usually poor but not exclusively, blacks look to the likes of jesse and big perm al as "black leaders" because they tell them it's not their fault it's whitey's fault thereby making it easy for them to do nothing to better themselves....why bother whitey is just going to keep me down....therefore some people feel that these so called "black leaders" pander to poor blacks and jump on issues that more educated (whether formal or otherwise) blacks easily recognize as b.s....thus poverty pimps
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: ImVinny! on January 24, 2007, 05:16:18 PM
Do you think that they will inevidably allow him to join? I mean, shouldn't they be concerned about the fact that a majority of his district is black and he actually cares about representing THEM?
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 24, 2007, 05:18:44 PM
Do you think that they will inevidably allow him to join? I mean, shouldn't they be concerned about the fact that a majority of his district is black and he actually cares about representing THEM?

i dont know how it will play out...the reason they gave at least according to the article was irresponsible imo...i guess since the guy let it go that will be the end of it...
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Miss P on January 24, 2007, 05:57:22 PM
I'm kind of surprised by how people in this thread have dogged the work of the CBC.  Taking into account the fact that most of its members have long been in the political minority in Congress (and, of course, institutional racism), I think the CBC has organized reasonably well and done some good.  In any case, its political effectiveness surely can't be judged on the basis of number of legislative successes.  I mean, seriously, there's one black senator and something like 40 black representatives.  It's hard to get things beyond holding hearings and writing reports if these are your numbers.  And these numbers may be the highest we've ever seen in the house (correct me if I'm wrong). 

Also, I don't think we should underestimate the supportive function of the CBC.  It's there not just to make legislative inroads but to support and educate junior members, etc.  Considering all of its members who have leadership positions on key committees, it may be doing a very good job of this.

here's where your argument is faulty... if these "conservative republican congresspersons" (his words not mine lol) wanted to join they simply would have tried... and they have not...CBC was founded in 1969.. if folks wanted to "takeover".. they would have done so by now

I don't think so.  Meiji's argument was that once a white member was admitted, other white representatives might believe they were also entitled to admission, that the floodgates would be opened.  Soon, a huge number of white Democrats in the northern and western states would try to join to shore up their credibility with black and other minority voters, and then whites anywhere with any signficant black voting bloc would do the same when they saw the political payoffs.  It's a potential problem.

As a (pretty much) white person who spent many years working in a majority black organization that focuses on African American civil rights issues, I do believe there is a place for white people of anti-racist political conscience in some black groups.  That role may be circumscribed (e.g., service not leadership) in some contexts.  And in others it may not exist at all.  The CBC has determined that it's not ready to let whites in.  I really don't see a problem with this, and I'm surprised so many of you (eh, not Vinny) do.  How is this different from Girl Scouts not admitting boys or the hens excluding the wolves from the henhouse?

When whites make up a congressional minority and can point to a centuries-old history of racial oppression at the hands of blacks, they can have form a CWC and exclude all the blacks they want. 

Finally, the majority-black district compromise seems a fair one, but I'm perfectly okay with the CBC saying that it won't admit non-black members too.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: iman on January 24, 2007, 07:58:40 PM
lol! well, clearly you have a different definition than most. the term as i understood it related to the words--someone who uses poor people for profit--someone who pimps them. When I worked at a foundation, we talked about how we didn't want to become "poverty pimps," that we wanted to do our jobs so well that they were no longer needed. Jesse is called a poverty pimp b/c many believe that he depends on the misery of poor people for a living. Not because he believes that racism exists and creates real problems for black people. Although i guess those two could be related in the way that you described. but clearly i have the mentality of a poor black who looks up to the likes of big perm al. so what would i know? thanks for clearing that up for me though.  :)

these same, usually poor but not exclusively, blacks look to the likes of jesse and big perm al as "black leaders" because they tell them it's not their fault it's whitey's fault thereby making it easy for them to do nothing to better themselves....why bother whitey is just going to keep me down....therefore some people feel that these so called "black leaders" pander to poor blacks and jump on issues that more educated (whether formal or otherwise) blacks easily recognize as b.s....thus poverty pimps
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: ! B L U E WAR R I O R..! on January 24, 2007, 08:23:54 PM
It's called Congress.

You are funny.  There are black people in congress.

Im being serious, imagine the heat that an all-white caucus would receive from the ACLU and NAACP.

Hypocrisy is hilarious


No seriously, it is called Congress.  Namely, the Senate.



what about carol mosely-braun...aye liked her.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Burning Sands, Esq. on January 24, 2007, 08:54:15 PM
It's called Congress.

You are funny.  There are black people in congress.

Im being serious, imagine the heat that an all-white caucus would receive from the ACLU and NAACP.

Hypocrisy is hilarious


No seriously, it is called Congress.  Namely, the Senate.



what about carol mosely-braun...aye liked her.

I like her too. And she is a Delta! :)
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Miss P on January 25, 2007, 08:34:09 AM
an additional thought. if they dismissed his application in a haughty way, it may have something to do with the fact that he made it public, perhaps in an effort to embarrass them into admitting him.

Yeah, but seriously, how presumptuous is it for some white guy running for office to have said he was going to be the first white member of the CBC without ever even cozying up to John Conyers or taking Eleanor Holmes Norton out to lunch?
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: ! B L U E WAR R I O R..! on January 25, 2007, 02:47:01 PM
It's called Congress.

You are funny.  There are black people in congress.

Im being serious, imagine the heat that an all-white caucus would receive from the ACLU and NAACP.

Hypocrisy is hilarious


No seriously, it is called Congress.  Namely, the Senate.



what about carol mosely-braun...aye liked her.

I like her too. And she is a Delta! :)

a class act...and is above the color of skin nonsense...
did not know that she was a delta...

wait until no one notices who has a tan or not...the senate will be full of folks who, more importantly focus on the fact that they live by da beach.
al sharpton will be a fossil of a forgotten time... ;)
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 25, 2007, 03:17:33 PM
lol! well, clearly you have a different definition than most. the term as i understood it related to the words--someone who uses poor people for profit--someone who pimps them. When I worked at a foundation, we talked about how we didn't want to become "poverty pimps," that we wanted to do our jobs so well that they were no longer needed. Jesse is called a poverty pimp b/c many believe that he depends on the misery of poor people for a living. Not because he believes that racism exists and creates real problems for black people. Although i guess those two could be related in the way that you described. but clearly i have the mentality of a poor black who looks up to the likes of big perm al. so what would i know? thanks for clearing that up for me though.  :)

these same, usually poor but not exclusively, blacks look to the likes of jesse and big perm al as "black leaders" because they tell them it's not their fault it's whitey's fault thereby making it easy for them to do nothing to better themselves....why bother whitey is just going to keep me down....therefore some people feel that these so called "black leaders" pander to poor blacks and jump on issues that more educated (whether formal or otherwise) blacks easily recognize as b.s....thus poverty pimps


Jesse is called a poverty pimp b/c many believe that he depends on the misery of poor people for a living. someone who uses poor people for profit...


i dont see how this is any different than what i described except that...at Vinny's request i went into more detail....you may describe poverty pimp as you like but the term was first used to my knowledge as an insult to jesse jackson when he was running for president in 1984 i don't know if that is before your time or not....and no problem i clear people up all the time.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 25, 2007, 03:21:34 PM
It's called Congress.

You are funny.  There are black people in congress.

Im being serious, imagine the heat that an all-white caucus would receive from the ACLU and NAACP.

Hypocrisy is hilarious


No seriously, it is called Congress.  Namely, the Senate.



what about carol mosely-braun...aye liked her.

I like her too. And she is a Delta! :)

a class act...and is above the color of skin nonsense...
did not know that she was a delta...

wait until no one notices who has a tan or not...the senate will be full of folks who live by da beach.
al sharpton will be a fossil of a forgotten time... ;)



can't wait for that day
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 25, 2007, 03:27:17 PM
Poverty pimp is a derogatory label used to convey the accusation that an individual or group is benefiting unduly by acting as an intermediary on behalf of the poor. Those who use this appellation suggest that "poverty pimps" profit from their attempts to alleviate the misfortune of others, and therefore do not really wish the poverty to be eliminated permanently as it is not in their own interest for this to happen, and that if profit was eliminated as a factor, great steps in the alleviation of poverty would begin to truly occur.

The most frequent targets of this accusation are groups receiving government funding.

Another meaning for the term, sometimes used, is an individual or group that solicits private charity for the poor.


it is older than jesse apparently but he and his perm wearing homies are still the primary thought that comes to my mind when i hear the phrase...and always giving credit where credit is due at least al stopped wearing the gold chains...especially on the outside of his velvet sweat suit...'cause that's what i want in a leader
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: ! B L U E WAR R I O R..! on January 25, 2007, 03:36:11 PM
It's called Congress.

You are funny.  There are black people in congress.

Im being serious, imagine the heat that an all-white caucus would receive from the ACLU and NAACP.

Hypocrisy is hilarious


No seriously, it is called Congress.  Namely, the Senate.



what about carol mosely-braun...aye liked her.

I like her too. And she is a Delta! :)

a class act...and is above the color of skin nonsense...
did not know that she was a delta...

wait until no one notices who has a tan or not...the senate will be full of folks who live by da beach.
al sharpton will be a fossil of a forgotten time... ;)



can't wait for that day

sooner than ya think... ;)
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Rudy Huckleberry on January 25, 2007, 05:16:20 PM
What should one do if one wants to help black and/or poor people? Is working at a law firm any better than what the CBC, or for that matter, Jesse/Al, is trying to do? I'm thinking about motes and beams at the moment...jsia
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Miss P on January 25, 2007, 05:18:19 PM
What should one do if one wants to help black and/or poor people? Is working at a law firm any better than what the CBC, or for that matter, Jesse/Al, is trying to do? I'm thinking about motes and beams at the moment...jsia

I think that's exactly right.  Sometimes our priorities really get unsorted when we critique people who are trying, generally, to do the right thing.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 25, 2007, 05:55:52 PM
the road to hell is paved with good intentions...and i will continue to critique those put themselves out there for critiquin'
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Rudy Huckleberry on January 25, 2007, 06:02:22 PM
the road to hell is paved with good intentions...and i will continue to critique those put themselves out there for critiquin'

So the answer is to do nothing in a public forum? The way to avoid your critique is to mind your own business and just thing of yourself?
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 25, 2007, 06:15:33 PM
here is the main problem i have with the jesse jacksons and al sharpton's of the world these men grew up when most black people were poor...when white people could literally kill you for lookin' at them the wrong way or failing to step off of the sidewalk when they approached or just for being black and in the wrong place at the wrong time etc...yet they made it...they made it through hard work, discipline, intelligence and of course by taking advantage of the many opportunities that became available thanks  to the civil rights movement...yet whenever they open their mouths all i hear is how racism is holding blacks back...the system won't let us achieve...black children can't learn unless teachers teach them in ghetto slang....black people can not prosper unless everything is handed to them just so...at the right temperature and perfectly packaged....and how we might as well still be in slavery (which i think is so disrespectful to the memory of slaves) its like someone with a head cold telling someone who is dying of cancer "we're the same because we're both sick"...they excuse n wordish behavior and shoot down anyone who tries to point out the progress thats been made...this is the message they send out to the least and most vulnerable among us...this is what they send out to a people who survived slavery and have adapted to and overcome everything they've thrown at us...that's ok with ya'll that's????
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: iman on January 25, 2007, 06:21:30 PM
this definition tracks mine almost word for word so i don't really think i need to be cleared up. in case you didn't realize the last time, the problem i have with your definition is that you say the phrase somehow relates to people thinking that white folks have something to do with why black people are in the situation they are in. or that a person who doesn't believe that personal responsibility will solve most (if not all) of the problems facing black people qualifies as a poverty pimp. i.e. the quote below. however, that doesn't relate to the phrase imo. i just wanted to clarify for vinny who has some problems understanding things of this nature. and make it clear that there is a different (perhaps more widely used) definition.

"these same, usually poor but not exclusively, blacks look to the likes of jesse and big perm al as "black leaders" because they tell them it's not their fault it's whitey's fault thereby making it easy for them to do nothing to better themselves....why bother whitey is just going to keep me down....therefore some people feel that these so called "black leaders" pander to poor blacks and jump on issues that more educated (whether formal or otherwise) blacks easily recognize as b.s....thus poverty pimps"

Poverty pimp is a derogatory label used to convey the accusation that an individual or group is benefiting unduly by acting as an intermediary on behalf of the poor. Those who use this appellation suggest that "poverty pimps" profit from their attempts to alleviate the misfortune of others, and therefore do not really wish the poverty to be eliminated permanently as it is not in their own interest for this to happen, and that if profit was eliminated as a factor, great steps in the alleviation of poverty would begin to truly occur.

The most frequent targets of this accusation are groups receiving government funding.

Another meaning for the term, sometimes used, is an individual or group that solicits private charity for the poor.


it is older than jesse apparently but he and his perm wearing homies are still the primary thought that comes to my mind when i hear the phrase...and always giving credit where credit is due at least al stopped wearing the gold chains...especially on the outside of his velvet sweat suit...'cause that's what i want in a leader
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Miss P on January 25, 2007, 06:28:42 PM
here is the main problem i have with the jesse jacksons and al sharpton's of the world these men grew up when most black people were poor...when white people could literally kill you for lookin' at them the wrong way or failing to step off of the sidewalk when they approached or just for being black and in the wrong place at the wrong time etc...yet they made it...they made it through hard work, discipline, intelligence and of course by taking advantage of the many opportunities that became available thanks  to the civil rights movement...yet whenever they open their mouths all i hear is how racism is holding blacks back...the system won't let us achieve...black children can't learn unless teachers teach them in ghetto slang....black people can not prosper unless everything is handed to them just so...at the right temperature and perfectly packaged....and how we might as well still be in slavery (which i think is so disrespectful to the memory of slaves) its like someone with a head cold telling someone who is dying of cancer "we're the same because we're both sick"...they excuse n wordish behavior and shoot down anyone who tries to point out the progress thats been made...this is the message they send out to the least and most vulnerable among us...this is what they send out to a people who survived slavery and have adapted to and overcome everything they've thrown at us...that's ok with ya'll that's????

I hear you, jarhead, but most black people are still poor. 
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 25, 2007, 06:45:41 PM
here is the main problem i have with the jesse jacksons and al sharpton's of the world these men grew up when most black people were poor...when white people could literally kill you for lookin' at them the wrong way or failing to step off of the sidewalk when they approached or just for being black and in the wrong place at the wrong time etc...yet they made it...they made it through hard work, discipline, intelligence and of course by taking advantage of the many opportunities that became available thanks  to the civil rights movement...yet whenever they open their mouths all i hear is how racism is holding blacks back...the system won't let us achieve...black children can't learn unless teachers teach them in ghetto slang....black people can not prosper unless everything is handed to them just so...at the right temperature and perfectly packaged....and how we might as well still be in slavery (which i think is so disrespectful to the memory of slaves) its like someone with a head cold telling someone who is dying of cancer "we're the same because we're both sick"...they excuse n wordish behavior and shoot down anyone who tries to point out the progress thats been made...this is the message they send out to the least and most vulnerable among us...this is what they send out to a people who survived slavery and have adapted to and overcome everything they've thrown at us...that's ok with ya'll that's????

I hear you, jarhead, but most black people are still poor. 


i knew i should not have put most...how about 99%
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 25, 2007, 06:47:12 PM
this definition tracks mine almost word for word so i don't really think i need to be cleared up. in case you didn't realize the last time, the problem i have with your definition is that you say the phrase somehow relates to people thinking that white folks have something to do with why black people are in the situation they are in. or that a person who doesn't believe that personal responsibility will solve most (if not all) of the problems facing black people qualifies as a poverty pimp. i.e. the quote below. however, that doesn't relate to the phrase imo. i just wanted to clarify for vinny who has some problems understanding things of this nature. and make it clear that there is a different (perhaps more widely used) definition.

"these same, usually poor but not exclusively, blacks look to the likes of jesse and big perm al as "black leaders" because they tell them it's not their fault it's whitey's fault thereby making it easy for them to do nothing to better themselves....why bother whitey is just going to keep me down....therefore some people feel that these so called "black leaders" pander to poor blacks and jump on issues that more educated (whether formal or otherwise) blacks easily recognize as b.s....thus poverty pimps"

Poverty pimp is a derogatory label used to convey the accusation that an individual or group is benefiting unduly by acting as an intermediary on behalf of the poor. Those who use this appellation suggest that "poverty pimps" profit from their attempts to alleviate the misfortune of others, and therefore do not really wish the poverty to be eliminated permanently as it is not in their own interest for this to happen, and that if profit was eliminated as a factor, great steps in the alleviation of poverty would begin to truly occur.

The most frequent targets of this accusation are groups receiving government funding.

Another meaning for the term, sometimes used, is an individual or group that solicits private charity for the poor.


it is older than jesse apparently but he and his perm wearing homies are still the primary thought that comes to my mind when i hear the phrase...and always giving credit where credit is due at least al stopped wearing the gold chains...especially on the outside of his velvet sweat suit...'cause that's what i want in a leader





i think you see what you want to see and im done here
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: iman on January 25, 2007, 06:59:33 PM
you know what i have a problem with? And I know its going to sound bitchy, but here goes. i feel like most black people don't spend alot of time researching issues about black people. they just feel like b/c they're black, they know about whats going on. When my friends and I get into these debates, they almost always parrot the same types of things you're talking about. when i say, well, you know that the ebonics issue in Oakland isn't about teaching slang to students, it was about educating teachers about the existence of the phenomenon so they could adequately "translate" what was being said into the correct conjugation. and actually Jesse Jackson was against it until he went to visit the school district and changed his mind. I think Black people are conservative by nature. The whole frat/sorority movement was built on these very same notions of personal responsibility like 100 years ago. People would say, if we pursued "finer womanhood" then white men wouldn't rape us so much. Or maybe if our kids could be in phi beta kappa, then they wouldn't get lynched. but at the end of the day, those same things still happened b/c personal responsibility wasn't the only thing that made a difference at the end of the day--you were still black. I don't think anyone is saying that you should stop pushing black people to rise to the top. but what if you forget the other part of the equation? racism and classism are still big factors in terms of who receives the full benefits of their actions. And I think thats what Al and Jesse see as their role.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Rudy Huckleberry on January 25, 2007, 09:41:14 PM
you know what i have a problem with? And I know its going to sound bitchy, but here goes. i feel like most black people don't spend alot of time researching issues about black people. they just feel like b/c they're black, they know about whats going on. When my friends and I get into these debates, they almost always parrot the same types of things you're talking about. when i say, well, you know that the ebonics issue in Oakland isn't about teaching slang to students, it was about educating teachers about the existence of the phenomenon so they could adequately "translate" what was being said into the correct conjugation. and actually Jesse Jackson was against it until he went to visit the school district and changed his mind. I think Black people are conservative by nature. The whole frat/sorority movement was built on these very same notions of personal responsibility like 100 years ago. People would say, if we pursued "finer womanhood" then white men wouldn't rape us so much. Or maybe if our kids could be in phi beta kappa, then they wouldn't get lynched. but at the end of the day, those same things still happened b/c personal responsibility wasn't the only thing that made a difference at the end of the day--you were still black. I don't think anyone is saying that you should stop pushing black people to rise to the top. but what if you forget the other part of the equation? racism and classism are still big factors in terms of who receives the full benefits of their actions. And I think thats what Al and Jesse see as their role.

AMEN and AMEN. Not bitchy at all :)
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Miss P on January 25, 2007, 09:45:04 PM
you know what i have a problem with? And I know its going to sound bitchy, but here goes. i feel like most black people don't spend alot of time researching issues about black people. they just feel like b/c they're black, they know about whats going on. When my friends and I get into these debates, they almost always parrot the same types of things you're talking about. when i say, well, you know that the ebonics issue in Oakland isn't about teaching slang to students, it was about educating teachers about the existence of the phenomenon so they could adequately "translate" what was being said into the correct conjugation. and actually Jesse Jackson was against it until he went to visit the school district and changed his mind. I think Black people are conservative by nature. The whole frat/sorority movement was built on these very same notions of personal responsibility like 100 years ago. People would say, if we pursued "finer womanhood" then white men wouldn't rape us so much. Or maybe if our kids could be in phi beta kappa, then they wouldn't get lynched. but at the end of the day, those same things still happened b/c personal responsibility wasn't the only thing that made a difference at the end of the day--you were still black. I don't think anyone is saying that you should stop pushing black people to rise to the top. but what if you forget the other part of the equation? racism and classism are still big factors in terms of who receives the full benefits of their actions. And I think thats what Al and Jesse see as their role.

AMEN and AMEN. Not bitchy at all :)

It may not be my place to agree (not being a member of the LSD Black Caucus and all), but I do, wholeheartedly.  And I'm so glad you're back.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Rudy Huckleberry on January 25, 2007, 09:53:04 PM
you know what i have a problem with? And I know its going to sound bitchy, but here goes. i feel like most black people don't spend alot of time researching issues about black people. they just feel like b/c they're black, they know about whats going on. When my friends and I get into these debates, they almost always parrot the same types of things you're talking about. when i say, well, you know that the ebonics issue in Oakland isn't about teaching slang to students, it was about educating teachers about the existence of the phenomenon so they could adequately "translate" what was being said into the correct conjugation. and actually Jesse Jackson was against it until he went to visit the school district and changed his mind. I think Black people are conservative by nature. The whole frat/sorority movement was built on these very same notions of personal responsibility like 100 years ago. People would say, if we pursued "finer womanhood" then white men wouldn't rape us so much. Or maybe if our kids could be in phi beta kappa, then they wouldn't get lynched. but at the end of the day, those same things still happened b/c personal responsibility wasn't the only thing that made a difference at the end of the day--you were still black. I don't think anyone is saying that you should stop pushing black people to rise to the top. but what if you forget the other part of the equation? racism and classism are still big factors in terms of who receives the full benefits of their actions. And I think thats what Al and Jesse see as their role.

AMEN and AMEN. Not bitchy at all :)

It may not be my place to agree (not being a member of the LSD Black Caucus and all), but I do, wholeheartedly.  And I'm so glad you're back.

lol - LSD black caucus. SMH. I'm glad to be back, though watching Dreamgirls was pretty great too! :D
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Miss P on January 25, 2007, 09:54:51 PM
you know what i have a problem with? And I know its going to sound bitchy, but here goes. i feel like most black people don't spend alot of time researching issues about black people. they just feel like b/c they're black, they know about whats going on. When my friends and I get into these debates, they almost always parrot the same types of things you're talking about. when i say, well, you know that the ebonics issue in Oakland isn't about teaching slang to students, it was about educating teachers about the existence of the phenomenon so they could adequately "translate" what was being said into the correct conjugation. and actually Jesse Jackson was against it until he went to visit the school district and changed his mind. I think Black people are conservative by nature. The whole frat/sorority movement was built on these very same notions of personal responsibility like 100 years ago. People would say, if we pursued "finer womanhood" then white men wouldn't rape us so much. Or maybe if our kids could be in phi beta kappa, then they wouldn't get lynched. but at the end of the day, those same things still happened b/c personal responsibility wasn't the only thing that made a difference at the end of the day--you were still black. I don't think anyone is saying that you should stop pushing black people to rise to the top. but what if you forget the other part of the equation? racism and classism are still big factors in terms of who receives the full benefits of their actions. And I think thats what Al and Jesse see as their role.

AMEN and AMEN. Not bitchy at all :)

It may not be my place to agree (not being a member of the LSD Black Caucus and all), but I do, wholeheartedly.  And I'm so glad you're back.

lol - LSD black caucus. SMH. I'm glad to be back, though watching Dreamgirls was pretty great too! :D

That was actually for faith, but it's nice to see you too, Mo, as always.  Congrats on finishing your exams!
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Rudy Huckleberry on January 25, 2007, 09:55:35 PM
you know what i have a problem with? And I know its going to sound bitchy, but here goes. i feel like most black people don't spend alot of time researching issues about black people. they just feel like b/c they're black, they know about whats going on. When my friends and I get into these debates, they almost always parrot the same types of things you're talking about. when i say, well, you know that the ebonics issue in Oakland isn't about teaching slang to students, it was about educating teachers about the existence of the phenomenon so they could adequately "translate" what was being said into the correct conjugation. and actually Jesse Jackson was against it until he went to visit the school district and changed his mind. I think Black people are conservative by nature. The whole frat/sorority movement was built on these very same notions of personal responsibility like 100 years ago. People would say, if we pursued "finer womanhood" then white men wouldn't rape us so much. Or maybe if our kids could be in phi beta kappa, then they wouldn't get lynched. but at the end of the day, those same things still happened b/c personal responsibility wasn't the only thing that made a difference at the end of the day--you were still black. I don't think anyone is saying that you should stop pushing black people to rise to the top. but what if you forget the other part of the equation? racism and classism are still big factors in terms of who receives the full benefits of their actions. And I think thats what Al and Jesse see as their role.

AMEN and AMEN. Not bitchy at all :)

It may not be my place to agree (not being a member of the LSD Black Caucus and all), but I do, wholeheartedly.  And I'm so glad you're back.

lol - LSD black caucus. SMH. I'm glad to be back, though watching Dreamgirls was pretty great too! :D

That was actually for faith, but it's nice to see you too, Mo, as always.  Congrats on finishing your exams!

lol. awww...sad. I didn't realize that was Faith. But she was right on!
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: One Step Ahead on January 25, 2007, 10:01:44 PM
I agree iman--although I think you are coloring the ebonics debate a bit.  From what I've read it was largely an attempt to get a crack at ESL grants. 
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: iman on January 26, 2007, 01:48:38 PM
lol! now that part i did know. but i'm saying the point of it wasn't to start english class conjugating the verb to be--i aint't, you ain't, we ain't, they ain't, he ain't, she ain't, you all ain't. :D
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 26, 2007, 02:41:57 PM
you know what i have a problem with? And I know its going to sound bitchy, but here goes. i feel like most black people don't spend alot of time researching issues about black people. they just feel like b/c they're black, they know about whats going on. When my friends and I get into these debates, they almost always parrot the same types of things you're talking about. when i say, well, you know that the ebonics issue in Oakland isn't about teaching slang to students, it was about educating teachers about the existence of the phenomenon so they could adequately "translate" what was being said into the correct conjugation. and actually Jesse Jackson was against it until he went to visit the school district and changed his mind. I think Black people are conservative by nature. The whole frat/sorority movement was built on these very same notions of personal responsibility like 100 years ago. People would say, if we pursued "finer womanhood" then white men wouldn't rape us so much. Or maybe if our kids could be in phi beta kappa, then they wouldn't get lynched. but at the end of the day, those same things still happened b/c personal responsibility wasn't the only thing that made a difference at the end of the day--you were still black. I don't think anyone is saying that you should stop pushing black people to rise to the top. but what if you forget the other part of the equation? racism and classism are still big factors in terms of who receives the full benefits of their actions. And I think thats what Al and Jesse see as their role.


as far as "researching" goes i've lived a little bit and experienced a lot...and listened to the old folks and have been all over the world and i am basing my opinion on what i've seen and experienced...not on what i read in a book and not on what i've sat around "debating" with my friends...so moving on where have you ever seen anyone on this board who doesn't agree with the jackson and sharpton viewpoint ever deny that all the things you mentioned are an issue...where?! this is why i can't stand this argument because it always misses the point....no one is denying that conditions exist what i and others who've so far choosen to remain silent are saying is...ok we know that....they've been that way for quite a while now...so now what...lets move on...you keep picking at a sore it does not heal period...this bleeding heart oooo you poor baby crap is killing us...if you're not part of the problem your part of the solution i usually keep my business to myself but i will share one thing....i volunteer at a boys and girls club helping kids with their HW talking to them about what i do tech careers etc...at least i try to..but what i end up doing is spending most of the day listening to young men tell me they dont care about school because nobody is going to give them a job...good jobs are for white people etc....and so yes i stress and will always stress personal responsibilty and perserverance and all the things i've mentioned in several other posts that you may have missed...you know why....because we used to have it and when we did...we were doing a lot better than we are now with all these studies and policies and theories and appeals to emotion...so no disrespect to your or your opinion but when you ask the old folks whats wrong with black people the first thing out of their mouth is very rarely racism...now why is that?
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 26, 2007, 02:58:15 PM
neither 'lack of personal respnsibility' nor 'racism' have a claim to being the whole story.  that, in my view, should always be the starting point in these discussions. otherwise we talk past each other.




i agree with that...that was kind of my whole point about seeing what you want to see... its not just racism thats all me bill cosby (yes i put myself in the same cat. with the cos) etc. are sayin' stop using that excuse 4 everything...i get so frustrated with that its b.s...my grandmother (90 years old) always tells  me you ain't carrying no white man on your back
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 26, 2007, 03:19:28 PM
gotcha.

but you can surely see that because at least some part of it is racism, that al and jesse and others like them have a very important role to play?

shouldn't your frustration be more directed at the people who shoot down personal responsibility talk wherever they find it (usually, for some odd reason, professors at Temple U*), rather than at al & jesse?



listen al & jesse are prominent guys who everybody knows who i personally cant stand...because of all the things i mentioned...so i use them as examples thats all...primary examples...plus like i said they put themselves out theres as the black voice...i wish i could remember the name of a book that came out about 2 summers ago but it was about the 6 months or so leading up to Dr. King's death...and in it there is a part where they talk about an argument King had with Jesse and I think Coleman young because they were against Dr. King supporting the trash worker strike because it wasn't glamorous enough...anyway long story short it talks about how Dr. King was yelling at them that all they were about was the shine they didn't care about the people and only wanted to be out in front...when i read that it soldidified for me the way i'd been feeling about jesse and his types...i mean Dr. King saw it back in '68...if anybody knows the book i mean could you please tell me the title...it came out the summer Mrs. King died i believe.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Burning Sands, Esq. on January 26, 2007, 03:46:11 PM
Iman and Jarhead - you guys are both on point in your propositions.

There is definitely something to be said for both pushing for a move forward by us and for us and also for not turning a blind eye to those who would place us back into a new millenium type of bondage if given the chance, so I can feel what both of you are saying. 
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: blk_reign on January 26, 2007, 03:57:12 PM
 :D :D :D ok this was classic

lol! now that part i did know. but i'm saying the point of it wasn't to start english class conjugating the verb to be--i aint't, you ain't, we ain't, they ain't, he ain't, she ain't, you all ain't. :D
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 26, 2007, 04:03:56 PM
jarhead -- it's called "At Canaan's Edge". 


yes!!! thanks
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: pikey on January 26, 2007, 04:08:43 PM
I think both sides of the coin can eventually be discouraging.  Stressing racism, the white man, etc while ignoring is initially discouraging because it sends the message that you can't do anything to overcome, so why bother.  Stressing personal responsibility while ignoring racism and other external effects is eventually discouraging because when you keep butting against external factors and aren't seeing results, you begin to think that you're the problem and that you're just not smart/motivated/rich/whatever enough to succeed.

I think that you have to let kids know that the deck is stacked against them from the onset, so they'll have to be even better (work harder, etc) to succeed.  My mom always told me that I would have to work twice as hard as a white person to succeed, but also showed me through words and actions that I could succeed.  It's not good enough to just pretend that everything is rosy and that the American dream is just there for the taking.  You have to fight, persevere and claw your way through a whole mess to even think about that American dream.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 26, 2007, 04:33:58 PM
absolute last post on this topic...i have never advocated ignoring anything...you will not find me pretending as if these other factors dont matter in any of my posts...thats not what i said and thats not what Mr. Cosby said...by the way i wonder how many people who attack him have actually listened to an entire speech instead of a sound bite taken out of context...yet that is always the knee jerk response to this point of view...the so called "blaming the victim" what about racism...there's racism...but did you know about racism.....sick of it
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 26, 2007, 05:10:54 PM
wasn't addressed tp your post...thanks for remembering that title
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Miss P on January 26, 2007, 06:30:31 PM
absolute last post on this topic...i have never advocated ignoring anything...you will not find me pretending as if these other factors dont matter in any of my posts...thats not what i said and thats not what Mr. Cosby said...by the way i wonder how many people who attack him have actually listened to an entire speech instead of a sound bite taken out of context...yet that is always the knee jerk response to this point of view...the so called "blaming the victim" what about racism...there's racism...but did you know about racism.....sick of it

I sat through the entirety of the first of such speeches at Constitution Hall on March 17, 2004, and I don't think that I have taken sound bites out of context.  It was a terrible, mean-spirited, dirty, crotchety-old-man speech.  There was no love for young black people, and there was no acknowledgment of the difficulties black families face.  It was really not the speech his supporters make it out to be.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: obamacon on January 26, 2007, 06:44:21 PM
It was a terrible, mean-spirited, dirty, crotchety-old-man speech.

Really? It was that bad without retaining its terrible, mean-spirited, dirty, crotchety-old-manishness in print or on tape?
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: obamacon on January 26, 2007, 06:47:17 PM
i was just stating my own perspective on the wider issue of what black politics could/should look like in the future..

I'm hoping it resembles Japanese-American politics myself.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Miss P on January 26, 2007, 06:53:19 PM
It was a terrible, mean-spirited, dirty, crotchety-old-man speech.

Really? It was that bad without retaining its terrible, mean-spirited, dirty, crotchety-old-manishness in print or on tape?

AFAIK, Howard did not release the video and transcript of the event because of the controversy.  Correct me if I am wrong.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: obamacon on January 26, 2007, 08:49:30 PM
AFAIK, Howard did not release the video and transcript of the event because of the controversy.  Correct me if I am wrong.

Is this it?

http://www.americanrhetoric.com/speeches/billcosbypoundcakespeech.htm
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Miss P on January 26, 2007, 09:33:19 PM
AFAIK, Howard did not release the video and transcript of the event because of the controversy.  Correct me if I am wrong.

Is this it?

http://www.americanrhetoric.com/speeches/billcosbypoundcakespeech.htm

That's the version his public relations executives have distributed, with added bits he didn't say, such as this following the comment about naming your child Mohammad, "(When we give these kinds names to our children, we give them the strength and inspiration in the meaning of those names. Whatís the point of giving them strong names if there is not parenting and values backing it up).[sic]"

I stand by my assessment that this speech was dirty and mean-spirited.  The "laughs" so noted in this transcript were coming from about a quarter of the people in the audience -- I have heard estimates as high as a third -- but the majority of the people there were truly shocked by the nastiness pouring from the mouth an erstwhile icon. I know most of you disagree with me about this, but if you had been in Constitution Hall that day, you would know that a bunch of upperclass black Christians also found it offensive; my opinions about how Mr. Cosby conducted himself come not only from my structuralist politics but also from my sense of decency.  It was indecent.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 27, 2007, 08:20:22 AM
i dont have a problem with what he said about naming your kid Mohammed really what is so offensive about what he said? and he's given more than one speech I particularly like the one he gave at Spelman...of cours your're entitled to your opinion but Howard aside....I've heard far more praise than criticism for what Mr. Cosby is saying and the criticism I have heard comes from the usual circles (shrug)
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Miss P on January 27, 2007, 08:34:45 AM
i dont have a problem with what he said about naming your kid Mohammed really what is so offensive about what he said? and he's given more than one speech I particularly like the one he gave at Spelman...of cours your're entitled to your opinion but Howard aside....I've heard far more praise than criticism for what Mr. Cosby is saying and the criticism I have heard comes from the usual circles (shrug)

I wouldn't have had a problem if what I quoted above is what he had actually said about naming your child Mohammad and not something his PR executives threw in to soften his image when they released a "copy" of his remarks.  What he actually said was, "Those people are not Africans, they donít know a damned thing about Africa. With names like Shaniqua, Shaligua, Mohammed and all that crap and all of them are in jail."  You don't have a problem with this?

Who are the "usual circles"?  I mean, I could just as easily say that the praise for his speech came from all the "usual circles" too, but I don't think that really tells us much.  And the real point is, do any of the "lower economic people" at whom Cosby directed his tirade feel uplift and strength from this?  Is it doing anyone any good?
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 27, 2007, 08:49:10 AM
well the usual circles would be the blaming the victim camp...and i can see your point about the lower class's feelings...but what i take from Cosby's speeches is that he's recognizing that there is a divide....there is a divide between those of us who despite all the obstacles manage to find a way and do the right thing and those of us who sit on our asses waiting on someone to hand us something, hook us up and pointing out all the reasons why something can't be done etc....i have people in my family like this and grew up in a neighborhood full of people with this mentality...i was told oh well your smart like that's all it takes is smarts...many of those dudes standing on the corner running million dollar drug empires were smart too some im sure were prolly smarter than me...my dumb ass cousin is smart but all he does is look for excuses not to try....i'll admit there are some people who can hang in there and understand and make excuses but i'm not one...i mean i'm not this cold hearted f everybody clarence thomas type of guy i am willing to give anybody a hand up but you gotta reach that hand up and you  gotta help me lift...otherwise im gonna get pulled down with you and that ain't happenin'....so imma have to let you go....
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 27, 2007, 09:02:23 AM
oh and dont have a problem with either version...most african americans dont know anything about africa might have read a few books etc. they have no connection i include myself in this...first time i went over there i felt ashamed..because i saw these people who dont have running water and lived in literally huts (if they were lucky) some just slept out in the grass....little kids were speaking english to me...broken but they were tryin'....and so many of the governments over there are completely corrupt sell their people out for less than nothing....and contrary to popular belief thats one of the reasons a lot of coporations won't do business in africa because they have to pay so many bribes etc....i just felt like a complete ass for complaining about anything...
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Miss P on January 27, 2007, 09:07:08 AM
well the usual circles would be the blaming the victim camp...and i can see your point about the lower class's feelings...but what i take from Cosby's speeches is that he's recognizing that there is a divide....there is a divide between those of us who despite all the obstacles manage to find a way and do the right thing and those of us who sit on our asses waiting on someone to hand us something, hook us up and pointing out all the reasons why something can't be done etc....i have people in my family like this and grew up in a neighborhood full of people with this mentality...i was told oh well your smart like that's all it takes is smarts...many of those dudes standing on the corner running million dollar drug empires were smart too some im sure were prolly smarter than me...my dumb ass cousin is smart but all he does is look for excuses not to try....i'll admit there are some people who can hang in there and understand and make excuses but i'm not one...i mean i'm not this cold hearted f everybody clarence thomas type of guy i am willing to give anybody a hand up but you gotta reach that hand up and you  gotta help me lift...otherwise im gonna get pulled down with you and that ain't happenin'....so imma have to let you go....

I assume by "blame the victim" camp, you meen people who are obsessed with their victim status.  Because Cosby is what I would call the "blame the victim" camp.  

Also, just to clarify, I wasn't really concerned about the feelings of the people at whom Cosby directed his tirade, I was concerned about whether that form of criticism could ever be effective. It doesn't serve to make people do better or want to do better.

Overall, I hear what you're saying.  But I think the problem is that a lot of people work really hard and don't get as far as they should.  Opportunities are distributed according to race and class, not (merely) effort.  Mr. Cosby, of all people, should be mindful of this.

Anyway, I'll shut up.  You've all heard this one before.



Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Miss P on January 27, 2007, 09:07:38 AM
and yet they're probably the happiest people in the world.

You're such a romantic.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Miss P on January 27, 2007, 09:12:24 AM
and yet they're probably the happiest people in the world.

You're such a romantic.

i credit africa & africans for this.  :)

lol
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 27, 2007, 09:24:12 AM
i just think some people are shooting the messenger...and i guess it depends on your definition of success...if you are working and paying taxes and educating yourself about whats going on in the world than your a success as far as I'm concerned...my standards are not high...i just dont think it does us any good or is progressive in any way to constantly point out all the things that make it hard...its just a very pessimistic point of view in my opinion and its always the people who look for ways in spite of XYZ that change the world....
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: obamacon on January 27, 2007, 10:49:14 AM
and yet they're probably the happiest people in the world.

You're such a romantic.

i credit africa & africans for this.  :)

Perhaps they also revealed what a poor gauge happiness is.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: parsley on January 28, 2007, 07:13:54 AM
I just wanted to add an article that really bothered me about the CBC.  It's from The New Republic, which I highly recommend that everyone subscribe to.  I use it quite a bit for work and even more just for fun (the movie reviews, etc. are underrated TNR features.)

Quote
The Congressional Black Caucus' petty politics.
Blackballed
by Conor Clarke 
Only at TNR Online | Post date 11.22.06    

Mel Watt is, and should be, a fairly happy man. On November 7, the North Carolina representative and chair of the all-Democratic Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) witnessed election returns that will, come January, make the 43-member caucus more powerful than it has been at any point in its 37-year existence. On November 8, Watt fired off a press release that made zero effort to contain the glee. "A Brand New Day for the American People," it declared, before going on to detail the various leadership and committee spoils his caucus would reap. It was, newspapers soon agreed, a pretty impressive treasure heap: five major committee chairs, 17 subcommittee chairs, and a whip spot to boot. But it's more than just big numbers. "It's historic," says CBC spokeswoman Myra Dandridge.

Well, so was the Rubik's Cube. But historic is not the same as desirable, and the question to be asked of the CBC's rise isn't whether it's unprecedented; it's whether it will actually lead to positive change. That's a harder one to answer: On one hand, it's true that the CBC's agenda--headlined by a bread-and-butter push to close disparities in health care, education, and employment--will be good for black Americans (and, as I wrote two weeks ago, good for keeping them in the Democratic Party). Then again, except for an interest in something called "equity in foreign policy," the agenda isn't so different from the party's boilerplate populist line: Good luck finding a Pelosi Democrat who supports healthcare inequality. But more worrying is that, over the last few years, the CBC has seemed less concerned with pursuing the interests of black Americans than with protecting the interests of black congressmen. And, Mel Watt's excitement notwithstanding, that's not something to be happy about.

If you found $90,000 in someone's freezer and had video evidence showing him accepting it as a bribe, you might think you'd stumbled upon an airtight case for punishment. That's what Nancy Pelosi thought of Louisiana Representative William Jefferson: When he was investigated for taking bribes, with pretty damning evidence (and a fast-approaching election), Pelosi pushed for a vote that pulled the radioactive representative from the powerful Ways and Means Committee. The move had the support of the vast majority of congressmen in the party--except, notably, the members of CBC. "The Caucus stood firmly behind Representative Jefferson," says Dandridge. Indeed, the caucus considered it kind of a no-brainer. "The first order of business for any CBC chair," she continues, "would be to protect his or her members, just like a lioness protects her baby cubs."

These are questionable priorities, but Jefferson was hardly the first cub to get sheltered. Two years ago, when Cynthia McKinney--the recently defeated Georgia congresswoman who had a penchant for September 11 conspiracies and scuffles with cops--started taking flak for her eccentricities, it was CBC members who sprang to her defense. And, if Alcee Hastings, Pelosi's likely and rather unorthodox pick to head up the House Intelligence Committee, is any guide, Jefferson and McKinney won't be the last. Hastings--a chronically debt-ridden Florida congressman who was once impeached for corruption as a federal judge--is obviously not the best person to head-up House Intelligence. (You can read the case against him here.) But last Thursday, according to Dandridge, the CBC sent a letter to Nancy Pelosi stating that the caucus was fully behind Hastings, and urging the incoming speaker to go ahead with the appointment.

And Pelosi probably will. One reason is that she enjoys what one CBC aide delightfully describes as a "tenuous" relationship with the caucus, a lackluster state of affairs that dates back to her perceived mishandling of the Jefferson situation: She was thought to have pushed too hastily for his removal. This perception led Watt to raise, loudly and implausibly, the specter of racism, and the incoming speaker is anxious to keep the relationship from deteriorating further. "She feels like she needs to handle the CBC with kid gloves," the aide elaborates. "She feels that, if she were to misstep, the members would attach bullhorns to their mouths and shout it from the mountaintops that there was a lack of representation and a lack of fairness." In the case of Hastings, they will have no shortage of mountaintops. After all, Pelosi made the conspicuously bad decision to stand by white Representative John Murtha--who has ethics problems of his own--in the race for House majority leader.

 

But the CBC isn't just concerned with keeping people in; it's just as willing to keep people out. A few months ago, a 57 year-old white man named Steve Cohen, who was running to replace Harold Ford Jr. in Tennessee, mentioned that, if elected, he would try to join the CBC. The comment might seem a bit baffling, but it wasn't immediately unreasonable: 60 percent of his district is black, and Cohen, an affable man who ended up winning the election, insists that he only wanted to join if the CBC "felt comfortable with it." But it became very clear very quickly that the CBC was not comfortable with it. Just as fast as Cohen floated the idea of signing up, an internal CBC strategy memo obtained by The Washington Times--noting that it was "critical" that "membership remain exclusively African American"--torpedoed it. According to Dandridge and others, Cohen met with caucus members when he was in town last week, and is now "no longer interested in becoming a CBC member."

In one sense, it's hard to blame the caucus for looking after its own, or for pressing the party leadership on issues of diversity. As Dandridge put it in the days after the election, it's nice when you have "diversity among the ranks of the House leadership" that "mirrors how America looks." Unfortunately, the mirror fantasy doesn't quite square with reality--just ask the Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC). "Population-wise, the answer is no, we don't have the representation we should," gripes one senior CHC aide. It's true. After the 2000 census, Latinos passed blacks as the country's biggest minority. And, like blacks, they voted overwhelmingly for Democratic candidates two weeks ago. Yet the 2006 election left the CHC with exactly one new committee chair. This isn't the CBC's fault--committee chairmanships are almost always determined by seniority--but the caucus' aggressiveness has made some difference: If Hastings were passed over for the top Intelligence Committee spot, the next in line would be longtime CHCer Silvestre Reyes.

 

The CBC knows there is reason for the Latino community to be unhappy. In 2001, the CHC accepted a painful deal requiring that it support Democratic incumbents even in races with Latino primary challengers--a backroom bargain meant to protect black lawmakers who, after the recent census, found themselves in districts with a plurality of Latinos. The deal stunted CHC growth, but not bitterness. And the CBC knows it. "You have folks that are grumbling," says one aide to a CBC member. "I can understand that they would be frustrated by not having a larger voice."

If the CBC hears that frustration, it should prove it: The caucus should use its enviably large voice to speak on the behalf of something other than itself. An interest group that gets what it wants by threatening to call Democratic officials racists can't have the party's interests at heart. If diversity is going to be more than gratuitous and petty, it needs to be treated as something other than a good unto itself. And if you're going to play identity politics, the least you can do is play it right.

Conor Clarke is a writer in Washington, D.C.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 28, 2007, 09:28:27 AM
I just wanted to add an article that really bothered me about the CBC.  It's from The New Republic, which I highly recommend that everyone subscribe to.  I use it quite a bit for work and even more just for fun (the movie reviews, etc. are underrated TNR features.)

Quote
The Congressional Black Caucus' petty politics.
Blackballed
by Conor Clarke 
Only at TNR Online | Post date 11.22.06    

Mel Watt is, and should be, a fairly happy man. On November 7, the North Carolina representative and chair of the all-Democratic Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) witnessed election returns that will, come January, make the 43-member caucus more powerful than it has been at any point in its 37-year existence. On November 8, Watt fired off a press release that made zero effort to contain the glee. "A Brand New Day for the American People," it declared, before going on to detail the various leadership and committee spoils his caucus would reap. It was, newspapers soon agreed, a pretty impressive treasure heap: five major committee chairs, 17 subcommittee chairs, and a whip spot to boot. But it's more than just big numbers. "It's historic," says CBC spokeswoman Myra Dandridge.

Well, so was the Rubik's Cube. But historic is not the same as desirable, and the question to be asked of the CBC's rise isn't whether it's unprecedented; it's whether it will actually lead to positive change. That's a harder one to answer: On one hand, it's true that the CBC's agenda--headlined by a bread-and-butter push to close disparities in health care, education, and employment--will be good for black Americans (and, as I wrote two weeks ago, good for keeping them in the Democratic Party). Then again, except for an interest in something called "equity in foreign policy," the agenda isn't so different from the party's boilerplate populist line: Good luck finding a Pelosi Democrat who supports healthcare inequality. But more worrying is that, over the last few years, the CBC has seemed less concerned with pursuing the interests of black Americans than with protecting the interests of black congressmen. And, Mel Watt's excitement notwithstanding, that's not something to be happy about.

If you found $90,000 in someone's freezer and had video evidence showing him accepting it as a bribe, you might think you'd stumbled upon an airtight case for punishment. That's what Nancy Pelosi thought of Louisiana Representative William Jefferson: When he was investigated for taking bribes, with pretty damning evidence (and a fast-approaching election), Pelosi pushed for a vote that pulled the radioactive representative from the powerful Ways and Means Committee. The move had the support of the vast majority of congressmen in the party--except, notably, the members of CBC. "The Caucus stood firmly behind Representative Jefferson," says Dandridge. Indeed, the caucus considered it kind of a no-brainer. "The first order of business for any CBC chair," she continues, "would be to protect his or her members, just like a lioness protects her baby cubs."

These are questionable priorities, but Jefferson was hardly the first cub to get sheltered. Two years ago, when Cynthia McKinney--the recently defeated Georgia congresswoman who had a penchant for September 11 conspiracies and scuffles with cops--started taking flak for her eccentricities, it was CBC members who sprang to her defense. And, if Alcee Hastings, Pelosi's likely and rather unorthodox pick to head up the House Intelligence Committee, is any guide, Jefferson and McKinney won't be the last. Hastings--a chronically debt-ridden Florida congressman who was once impeached for corruption as a federal judge--is obviously not the best person to head-up House Intelligence. (You can read the case against him here.) But last Thursday, according to Dandridge, the CBC sent a letter to Nancy Pelosi stating that the caucus was fully behind Hastings, and urging the incoming speaker to go ahead with the appointment.

And Pelosi probably will. One reason is that she enjoys what one CBC aide delightfully describes as a "tenuous" relationship with the caucus, a lackluster state of affairs that dates back to her perceived mishandling of the Jefferson situation: She was thought to have pushed too hastily for his removal. This perception led Watt to raise, loudly and implausibly, the specter of racism, and the incoming speaker is anxious to keep the relationship from deteriorating further. "She feels like she needs to handle the CBC with kid gloves," the aide elaborates. "She feels that, if she were to misstep, the members would attach bullhorns to their mouths and shout it from the mountaintops that there was a lack of representation and a lack of fairness." In the case of Hastings, they will have no shortage of mountaintops. After all, Pelosi made the conspicuously bad decision to stand by white Representative John Murtha--who has ethics problems of his own--in the race for House majority leader.

 

But the CBC isn't just concerned with keeping people in; it's just as willing to keep people out. A few months ago, a 57 year-old white man named Steve Cohen, who was running to replace Harold Ford Jr. in Tennessee, mentioned that, if elected, he would try to join the CBC. The comment might seem a bit baffling, but it wasn't immediately unreasonable: 60 percent of his district is black, and Cohen, an affable man who ended up winning the election, insists that he only wanted to join if the CBC "felt comfortable with it." But it became very clear very quickly that the CBC was not comfortable with it. Just as fast as Cohen floated the idea of signing up, an internal CBC strategy memo obtained by The Washington Times--noting that it was "critical" that "membership remain exclusively African American"--torpedoed it. According to Dandridge and others, Cohen met with caucus members when he was in town last week, and is now "no longer interested in becoming a CBC member."

In one sense, it's hard to blame the caucus for looking after its own, or for pressing the party leadership on issues of diversity. As Dandridge put it in the days after the election, it's nice when you have "diversity among the ranks of the House leadership" that "mirrors how America looks." Unfortunately, the mirror fantasy doesn't quite square with reality--just ask the Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC). "Population-wise, the answer is no, we don't have the representation we should," gripes one senior CHC aide. It's true. After the 2000 census, Latinos passed blacks as the country's biggest minority. And, like blacks, they voted overwhelmingly for Democratic candidates two weeks ago. Yet the 2006 election left the CHC with exactly one new committee chair. This isn't the CBC's fault--committee chairmanships are almost always determined by seniority--but the caucus' aggressiveness has made some difference: If Hastings were passed over for the top Intelligence Committee spot, the next in line would be longtime CHCer Silvestre Reyes.

 

The CBC knows there is reason for the Latino community to be unhappy. In 2001, the CHC accepted a painful deal requiring that it support Democratic incumbents even in races with Latino primary challengers--a backroom bargain meant to protect black lawmakers who, after the recent census, found themselves in districts with a plurality of Latinos. The deal stunted CHC growth, but not bitterness. And the CBC knows it. "You have folks that are grumbling," says one aide to a CBC member. "I can understand that they would be frustrated by not having a larger voice."

If the CBC hears that frustration, it should prove it: The caucus should use its enviably large voice to speak on the behalf of something other than itself. An interest group that gets what it wants by threatening to call Democratic officials racists can't have the party's interests at heart. If diversity is going to be more than gratuitous and petty, it needs to be treated as something other than a good unto itself. And if you're going to play identity politics, the least you can do is play it right.

Conor Clarke is a writer in Washington, D.C.



*crickets*  :-\...bueller...bueller


good article by the way
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Statistic on January 28, 2007, 09:35:17 AM
Yah, that was a good article. The thing is, all politicians try to protect each other. But these cats have an extra burden and we can't afford them to be politics as usual - to rip a Jay song title. They need to be above that.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 28, 2007, 09:43:31 AM
definately i think things like that hurt their credibility and always leave me with the impression that its more about the power and prestige than it is about "the cause" but ya'll have heard me go on about that stuff ad naseum so i'll stop
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: parsley on January 28, 2007, 09:53:32 AM
There's a difference between "protecting" other politicians and giving a standing ovation to a guy with more dirty bribe money than some of us will have in student loans after law school wedged between his Green Giant corn and Stouffer's lasagna.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Miss P on January 28, 2007, 10:00:09 AM
I just wanted to add an article that really bothered me about the CBC.  It's from The New Republic, which I highly recommend that everyone subscribe to.  I use it quite a bit for work and even more just for fun (the movie reviews, etc. are underrated TNR features.)

The Congressional Black Caucus' petty politics.
Blackballed
by Conor Clarke 
Only at TNR Online | Post date 11.22.06

Huh.  I didn't find it particularly interesting.  The criticisms of the CBC seem to be reducible to the following:

1. Its agenda is not distinguishable from the Democratic Party platform.  First, this could be to the credit of the CBC: it actually, finally has enough influence within the party to have some control over the party's expressed goals.  Second, it could probably do better, sure -- its priorities may be off, etc. --  but I think the imperatives of governance make this unsurprising, especially since its members are minorities within a long-time minority (and terribly weak) party.  Are there problems with the CBC agenda? Is it asking for the wrong things?

2. It protects its own.  The CBC serves to protect its own?  Sure.  It's little different from a labor union in that way; the problem is the behavior of some of its members, not the fact of its existence.  I find this entirely unconvincing as a criticism given that an express purpose of the CBC is to support its members and encourage black representation in congress, and given that its power to achieve its (however meek) legislative goals is bound up in its numbers.  It would be more credible, perhaps, if it were equally/more vocal about other things, but this is the kind of compromise that people in power make.

3. It gets what it wants by threatening to call good, liberal white people racist!  Ummm, correct me if I'm wrong, but:

a. The only evidence of this was here, from an anonymous and possibly self-aggrandizing aide, describing Pelosi's purported fears of being called racist:

Quote from: Conor Clarke, TNR
This perception led Watt to raise, loudly and implausibly, the specter of racism, and the incoming speaker is anxious to keep the relationship from deteriorating further. "She feels like she needs to handle the CBC with kid gloves," the aide elaborates. "She feels that, if she were to misstep, the members would attach bullhorns to their mouths and shout it from the mountaintops that there was a lack of representation and a lack of fairness."

and b. To the extent that Watt did "raise... the specter of racism" (er, not so "loudly"), was it really entirely "implausible" given Pelosi's willingness to cut the cord with Jefferson while going out on a limb to support Murtha for majority leader?

4. Latinos and CHC members are underrepresented in leadership positions in congress.  Am I missing something?  Black members of congress are supposed to step off so that junior Latino members can chair subcommittees?  There's only one spot for brown people?  This criticism seems entirely inapt.


Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Miss P on January 28, 2007, 10:02:59 AM
Yah, that was a good article. The thing is, all politicians try to protect each other. But these cats have an extra burden and we can't afford them to be politics as usual - to rip a Jay song title. They need to be above that.

I basically agree with this, and I think that Jefferson is a corrupt fool.  That said, I do think it's important to remember that most minority members of congress have significantly fewer resources than most white members.  It makes some sense to me that they face inordinate pressure to accept bribes and gifts.  This is not an excuse, but it may mitigate against the "higher expectations" a little bit. :)
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 28, 2007, 10:12:52 AM
Yah, that was a good article. The thing is, all politicians try to protect each other. But these cats have an extra burden and we can't afford them to be politics as usual - to rip a Jay song title. They need to be above that.

I basically agree with this, and I think that Jefferson is a corrupt fool.  That said, I do think it's important to remember that most minority members of congress have significantly fewer resources than most white members.  It makes some sense to me that they face inordinate pressure to accept bribes and gifts.  This is not an excuse, but it may mitigate against the "higher expectations" a little bit. :)





miss P....come on now...you sound like that mother who refuses to believe her child would do anything wrong
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Burning Sands, Esq. on January 28, 2007, 10:15:51 AM
But hold up, lest we forget, Pelosi gave the same protection to W. Va Rep. Allan Mollahan when allegations of his money laundering surfaced, and the amount of money he "allegedly" came up on makes Jefferson's stuff look like chump change.  If Jefferson robbed a 7/11, Mollahan was the CEO of Enron.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Miss P on January 28, 2007, 10:17:23 AM
Yah, that was a good article. The thing is, all politicians try to protect each other. But these cats have an extra burden and we can't afford them to be politics as usual - to rip a Jay song title. They need to be above that.

I basically agree with this, and I think that Jefferson is a corrupt fool.  That said, I do think it's important to remember that most minority members of congress have significantly fewer resources than most white members.  It makes some sense to me that they face inordinate pressure to accept bribes and gifts.  This is not an excuse, but it may mitigate against the "higher expectations" a little bit. :)

miss P....come on now...you sound like that mother who refuses to believe her child would do anything wrong

What? No, not at all.  Jefferson clearly, clearly did something wrong.  I'm sure a bunch of others did too.  I wouldn't vote for them.  I could hardly bring myself to vote for Major Owens all those years.  I just think that the fact that members of congress with fewer financial resources face more pressure to cave into bribes and other forms of corruption means that it's hard for me to want to hold them to higher standards than others.  Now, William Jefferson?  Not so much.  He's just a fool.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Miss P on January 28, 2007, 10:19:42 AM
But hold up, lest we forget, Pelosi gave the same protection to W. Va Rep. Allan Mollahan when allegations of his money laundering surfaced, and the amount of money he "allegedly" came up on makes Jefferson's stuff look like chump change.  If Jefferson robbed a 7/11, Mollahan was the CEO of Enron.

Yes.  Now Mollohan is a piece of work.  And, as the article notes, she supported Murtha for majority leader, against the grain.  I don't know if there's a race problem here, but I can certainly see why someone might raise its specter.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 28, 2007, 10:20:06 AM
so lets compare two wrongs to make a right? and i don't think the actions of pelosi are the crux of this article...that whole jefferson incident was ridiculously handled and not just by the CBC i recall some republican congressman making a clearly irrelevant and some what comical constituional issue out of the fbi carrying out a legally obtained search warrant
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: A. on January 28, 2007, 10:31:15 AM
Actually, I think that was a pretty sound constitutional argument.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Miss P on January 28, 2007, 10:33:04 AM
so lets compare two wrongs to make a right? and i don't think the actions of pelosi are the crux of this article...that whole jefferson incident was ridiculously handled and not just by the CBC i recall some republican congressman making a clearly irrelevant and some what comical constituional issue out of the fbi carrying out a legally obtained search warrant

No.  It's not about two wrongs making a right.  It's about not creating higher expectations for people who have higher burdens.  But seriously, you have me all wrong.  If I had my way, most of these people would be out of jobs.  I don't have a lot of love for the CBC or the Democrats or anything.

The (bipartisan, widespread, and, yes, probably lame) Constitutional argument was not about defending Jefferson, though, but about defending certain privileges all members of congress want to enjoy.  As I understand it, they used the Speech & Debate Clause of Article I, Section 6 and the 4th Amendment to argue that the FBI did not have the right to raid a the offices of a member of congress.  I'm interested in government oversight of its members, but separation of powers principles may merit this defense a second listen.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 28, 2007, 12:36:28 PM
Actually, I think that was a pretty sound constitutional argument.


how so didn't they use the one about basically trying to harrass memembers on their way to vote? how does that relate to carrying out a legally obtained search warrant? plain language explanation please ya'll know i'm not in law school yet
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: A. on January 28, 2007, 12:49:41 PM
legally obtained search warrant

I don't have time really to go into it beyond what Miss P has already said, but this seems to be your hang-up.  Can the judiciary conspire with the executive to impede in the affairs of a legislator?  Normally not if he's acting in his capacity as such.  "Legally obtained" does not cure all.  Good arguments can be made either way as to whether or not a legislator's office should be considered off bounds.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 28, 2007, 12:58:37 PM
i understand Miss P's posting...i guess what i'm asking though is although you may be able to make that argument when related to this incident how is that objection to be perceived as anything but a congressman worried that their dirty laundry may be the next to be exposed ...i mean i dont see how there could be any intimidation involved...the FBI tried to be considerate and come in without a lot of hullabaloo but were turned away...with a lot of hotstility and arrogance i was told my some colleagues...so they applied for and were granted the search warrant....that case was a terrbile hook on which to hang that constitutional argument
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: A. on January 28, 2007, 01:03:14 PM
The issue isn't how nice the FBI was, but whether the FBI could be there at all.  It's arguable.  Just because they get a search warrant doesn't mean it's actually constitutional.  Public policy says you don't want to provide a disincentive for legislators to do their job.
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: jarhead on January 28, 2007, 01:06:41 PM
i understand...like i said im not a lawyer yet but to the lay person it didn't go over very well..not that that should be the measure of any legal argument just sayin'
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: iman on January 28, 2007, 05:40:22 PM
not that this is any surprise miss p, but I totally agree with your assessment of the article. ESPECIALLY the part about Latino congress-people. There was a posting on blackprof a few days ago that went down the percentages of minorities in Congress/Senate. Only Jewish folks were overrepresented relative to their population. But, I seriously doubt anyone would expect a Jewish member of Congress to give up their seat for a member of the CHC. So, clearly its only black folks (of which some are Latino) who should give up their political influence to be more "palatable." how much clearer could you be about trying to breed contempt btw. black folks and latinos?

and with the whole search thing--i don't know how the article spun it, but given the sound-bite culture its a little hard to put forward a good legal policy argument in the media. lol!

I just wanted to add an article that really bothered me about the CBC.  It's from The New Republic, which I highly recommend that everyone subscribe to.  I use it quite a bit for work and even more just for fun (the movie reviews, etc. are underrated TNR features.)

The Congressional Black Caucus' petty politics.
Blackballed
by Conor Clarke 
Only at TNR Online | Post date 11.22.06

Huh.  I didn't find it particularly interesting.  The criticisms of the CBC seem to be reducible to the following:

1. Its agenda is not distinguishable from the Democratic Party platform.  First, this could be to the credit of the CBC: it actually, finally has enough influence within the party to have some control over the party's expressed goals.  Second, it could probably do better, sure -- its priorities may be off, etc. --  but I think the imperatives of governance make this unsurprising, especially since its members are minorities within a long-time minority (and terribly weak) party.  Are there problems with the CBC agenda? Is it asking for the wrong things?

4. Latinos and CHC members are underrepresented in leadership positions in congress.  Am I missing something?  Black members of congress are supposed to step off so that junior Latino members can chair subcommittees?  There's only one spot for brown people?  This criticism seems entirely inapt.



Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: One Step Ahead on January 28, 2007, 06:34:20 PM
ditto to Miss P and iman.  That article was a hot mess.  >:(
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Rudy Huckleberry on January 28, 2007, 06:40:39 PM
yup, same here. My reaction was also - why can't the CHC find some white Congress members to give them seats? ???
Title: Re: Black Caucus: Whites Not Allowed
Post by: Burning Sands, Esq. on January 29, 2007, 10:29:24 AM
The issue isn't how nice the FBI was, but whether the FBI could be there at all.  It's arguable. Just because they get a search warrant doesn't mean it's actually constitutional. Public policy says you don't want to provide a disincentive for legislators to do their job.


co-sign