The Black Politico

Orlando politics and more -- from a black perspective

VP Mike Pence leaves an NFL game in protest

Last Sunday, Vice President Mike Pence left an NFL game after the national anthem because members of the football team kneeled during the anthem.

After, Pence posted on social media, “I left today’s Colts game because @POTUS and I will not dignify any event that disrespects our soldiers, our Flag, or our National Anthem.”

Wait. What? Dignify? First of all, does Pence really believe he and the President “dignify” events?

Among many things, the President of the United States is a man who claims to grab women by their private parts, he claimed he’d date his daughter and he mocks disabled people. He doesn’t dignify anything.

As for Vice President Pence, his willingness to leave a game because players took a knee, now defines him as a protestor who protested a protest. Or we can call it what it really is and that’s a tantrum.

What baffles me is the unbelievably bold statement the President and Vice President have made to take away funding from veterans.

According to Military Times, the White House’s proposed budget includes $3.6 billion in savings from benefits trims.

If you’ve ever talked to a veteran about their struggles, you’d know they suffer from not being able to get the necessary treatment and services they need from traditional VA hospitals.

Cutting funding is blatant disrespect for those who have fought and sacrificed their lives for this country yet the focus of our Commander-In-Chief and his sidekick, is on a football game and players who silently kneel to protest the anthem’s lie of “justice for all.”

On Monday, the President tweeted, “The trip by @VP Pence was long planned. He is receiving great praise for leaving game after the players showed such disrespect for country.” This comes after President Trump called for a boycott of the National Football League.

It appears Trump gave Pence direction on what to do during a protest via his tweet that read, “I asked @VP Pence to leave stadium if any players kneeled, disrespecting our country. I am proud of him and @SecondLady Karen.”

I wonder if Vice President Pence realizes he was used as a public relations stunt for the President and he missed a great time so that his boss could make a point to the NFL and those of us who support players taking a knee.

Overall, Pence’s political grandstand may play well to those who are firm supporters of the President but quite frankly, it was nothing short of a temper tantrum.

Top Ten Things The Democratic Party Isn’t Telling You

Although Democrats won the Oval Office in 2008 and 2012, the POTUS had little to no help in Congress making it ever so hard for President Obama to push through initiatives needed to help move the country toward bigger achievements. The leaders of the Democratic Party counted the President’s wins as universal gains but didn’t care to educate the public, or donors of the party, about how Republicans still had so much power and were using it to their advantage. Even the Supreme Court nominee chosen by President Obama wasn’t cleared. For many, a redesign of the Supreme Court is the reason we chose President Obama. Now, the liberals have not only lost the Oval, but Congress and what’s even more destructive, Democrats lost the upcoming picks for the Supreme Court. Some say the Democratic Party is nearer to its demise more than ever before, but leaders like Nancy Pelosi are denying anything is wrong. Let’s take a close look at the truth. Here are the top ten things the Democratic Party is not telling you.

  1. Superdelegates. Sigh. The Superdelegate process is just as corrupt as the Electoral College itself. It shows they don’t care about the delegates or the votes people cast on a local level. They give gifts and benefits to the Superdelegates to make sure they vote on behalf of the party at the convention, not the people.
  2. The Democratic Party took a big, fat back seat to the Black Lives Matter movement and still captured the “hearts and minds” of the vast majority of Black female voters. As officers gunned down Black men, women and children in the bloody streets of Anytown, USA, where in the world was the Democratic Party? Black people are the firewall to the party and Clinton received 95% of the Black vote. There’s no reason the Democratic Party should have sat silent on this issue. But, shhhhh. Between us, they don’t want you to recognize that a political party has significant power in ending this kind of corruption.
  3. There is no democracy in choosing leadership within the party. Some say there was no democracy in choosing the nominee. During the last Presidential pick, there is some real evidence showing Clinton was coronated. The Party neglected to listen to the members of the party and proudly chose who they owed and convinced members of the party that Sanders could not win a general race. Sadly, we now suffer with the outcome of that decision. Recently, at the Miami-Dade Party meeting, Democrats had plenty of coronating going on in the race against Bullard versus Bittel. Michigan had the same struggle. Local chapters all over the country are facing this battle. The party isn’t listening to the voices of the people, who are the local voters and is putting those in office who are elite and wealthy.
  4. They don’t want you involved in the political process. They want you as a silent member of the committee. But, they don’t want to hear your voice if it’s not in tune with theirs. Even if, you’re right and even if you can push them to win more seats across this country.
  5. The leaders of the party are elite, wealthy and white. These leaders can make it big regardless of which party is in office. They have money and money is power, right? The elite lead the Democratic Party and they really don’t want you messing that up. Hillary Clinton may or may not have been able to understand the struggle of middle class America. We still don’t know that and now probably never will. Most importantly, the takeaway here is, we’ve often bragged that the Democrats feel our struggle. Unfortunately, they just may feel it more so than the Republicans but not to a level of doing anything significant about it. No one really understands the struggle of the middle class except the middle class and those who have had a first-hand experience with it. The Democratic Party’s main goal is to serve its members and the majority of those who protect the party are diverse, poor and middle class.
  6. The Democratic Party ignored Progressives and even abused them. On the other hand, Trump talked directly to the Progressives and felt their pain. When President Elect Trump acknowledged that Bernie Sanders was a victim of the party’s corrupt system, Progressives listened and gravitated toward him.
  7. Progressives mapped out the outcome of the Presidential election and the Democratic Party ignored it. Democrat party leaders were sure they’d win against President Elect Donald J. Trump. They turned off and angered not only progressives but Trump’s “deplorables” as well. Trump reenergized the worst part of America’s mind and clinched the Oval Office by doing that. Democrats were not unprepared, they were unwilling to notice. It was a case of snobbery at its finest.
  8. The Democratic Party ignored the issue at Standing Rock and the protestors that Occupied Wall Street. This was a major mistake in which the Democratic party is not prepared to talk about publicly. When the Occupy Wall Street movement took off, the party should have listened. When our Sioux brothers and sisters stood against the North Dakota Access Pipeline the party should have stood with them. These were predominantly middle-class, Democrats. People who have donated and been active in the party. Yet, the party remained silent.
  9. The Democratic Party rules are the most corrupt. Did you know, leaders of the Democratic party can suspend rules if they don’t want to follow them? They can throw whatever they want out the window during an election and stand on what they think is the “best” action to take even if it goes against the will of the people. Leadership in the party is a steep hill to climb. If candidates in the party don’t have the look or the requirements that pass the elite in the party, the voters don’t have a fighting chance at getting in an election or winning it. Read the rules. They are simply, anti-democratic.
  10. The Democratic Party is struggling to save money right now, not members. So, feel free to leave at any time. If you’re not amongst the super-wealthy, they don’t care. If they have tons of money, they can rebuild a losing party. Right now, the money donors have given is squandered on a system that is outdated and losing. The only way to move forward is with Progressives leading the way and they have clearly refused that option, which is the only option left. Progressives have always said, to beat a far right administration is to put a far left administration into the war. Democrats are just standing there praising the minimal wins they have gotten thus far. President Obama’s win helped the party to push an illusion on donors pushing the narrative that the Democratic Party had far more power than it really has. In addition, this narrative put so much pressure on the POTUS that it made him seem as if he could do anything. When you wonder why the President worked with Republicans, this is partly why.

Stop blaming 3rd party supporters for Trump’s surge

Democrats, stop blaming 3rd party supporters. Republicans, stop praising them.

A vote for a 3rd party is a vote for a third party. It’s not a vote for Trump no more than it’s a vote for Clinton.

Democrats didn’t need Berners or Jill Stein supporters in the primary election. So, shouldn’t their math tell them, they don’t need them now?

I remember seeing a post on social media stating, although Bernie Sanders could turn-out crowds of thousands while Clinton struggled to even get hundreds to a rally, that didn’t translate into votes.

Seriously?

People really pushed that narrative and thought it was bought hook, line and sinker.
Now, they are running back to those same supporters with heartburn begging for them to vote for Clinton.

Listen Democrats, calm down, she’ll win. No need to take it out on young people and 3rd party supporters. She will win but it won’t be because 3rd party supporters put her in the White House.

It’ll be because Republicans also know how dangerous Trump is and they too will graciously hand over the Presidency to Clinton because she’ll do more to support Republicans than Trump will ever do.

That’s the smart way to do it, right? I mean, if you are in support of the Democratic Party and in any way, shape or form at the top of the food chain making decisions, you’d be “smart” to be holding crooked, private meetings doing brother-man head nodding in agreement that this is the strategy to take.

Now, of course, the Democrats will have to sacrifice a little by offering up some Senate and House seats but it’s well worth pushing it aside and claiming that Oval Office, isn’t it?

My mother would always say not to tell a lie because you’ll have to keep on telling lies to cover up the first lie you told. If Clinton and the Democratic Party stole the primary election from Sanders, they have to keep on stealing in order to get the overall win.

They just didn’t anticipate having to steal it from fiery Republicans and the Tea Party who infiltrated the party when President Obama was first elected.

Democrats have to negotiate with Republicans in order to get the White House and by golly, my radar detector tells me that’s exactly what will happen.

Before you go all willy-nilly on me, I’m no Trump supporter. I think the man is as looney as they come and what comes out of his mouth sounds like modern-day Hitler rhetoric.

The vast majority of his supporters are angry for one reason or another. It may be because they are racist and believe Trump will send all “immigrants” away and will take America back to the days of old. Or, maybe his supporters are so angry with Democrats and the Clinton’s that they have decided Trump really won’t be so bad after all.

Then you have those who just won’t vote because they have lost faith in the system altogether.

Whatever the reasons are, it’s sad. Yet we’re in a new era that is staring at the end of a two-party system as we know it.

Trump won’t do what the Republicans tell him to do and his own party knows it.

Not one of these candidates have demanded to stay steadfast on the issues to a point where the American people can take their focus off of the personalities of both and really imagine what a better America could look like for us. It’s not and never has been about them. It’s about us. Somewhere along the line, the American people have forgotten to demand we discuss the issues rather than the personal lives of those running.

Just look at the Dakota Access pipeline controversy right now. Do you wonder why in the world no candidate is talking about it rather than name-calling each other, discussing how he gropes women and blaming Huma Abedin for wide-open private servers simply because she married a creep?

That’s where the Democratic Party has fallen short and their kickback is our sharp and beautiful, Michelle Obama speaking highly of her trust for Hillary Clinton. The Clintons and the party has even pushed our beloved Mo (Michelle Obama) to stomp for the very person that wished her husband harm and launched a brutal attack against him 8 years ago. We still and always will love you MO but we still have yet to focus heavily on us.

That’s politics and that’s where the free world stands today.

So here we are, with a little over a week until November 8th with Clinton and Trump, face-to-face, like they are in an old, western gunslinging movie and they can only draw for their guns on election day, a day when historically more Republicans turn out than democrats.

Yet, there’s nothing to fear and no one to blame but the parties themselves and the narratives that have been pushed since the start of the campaign.

Make no mistake, we’re looking at the very end of a two-party system as we know it and we should be.

Many people can’t fit themselves inside the two-party box no matter how hard they try and it’s about time we stop blaming the 3rd parties for a messy two-party system.

What many elder black leaders won’t tell you

“I’m an open book that no one is reading.”

That has been and probably will be my favorite line to younger people. I’m sure at some point, my elders felt the need to whisper that into my ear, as well.

My love of politics, black people and supporters of our issues often bundle themselves in my mind as one. I can’t fit my way into a two-party political system nor can I easily adapt to the culture of another race or class in which I don’t appear to belong. I can’t fake friendships. I’m ok with being followed around a store because the manager may think I’m stealing because of the color of my skin. I’m used to it. Maybe, I’m just weird like that and I’ve accepted the ways of society. I’d rather work hard and smart, make miracles happen on the job than to pretend to be the CEO’s bestie. If somewhere along the way, I find a friend, I’m happy to adopt him. But, like so many, that’s not my starting point if work and passion is involved.

Our elders often say it’s not about what you know but who you know. That mindset is changing as our tides change in the digital age with how we meet one another. My personality will always come second to my job and passion and I’m confident in that. I can be paid, but not bought and I’m often afraid that I’m so unafraid of other people. I wear my attitude, good or bad, on my sleeve. When it comes to choosing a Republican over a Democrat, I’ll stop you in your tracks.
I am just like so many others with an agenda to change this country. I don’t care if people of other races love black people. I just care that if people harm us, or force us to be what history has proven, that you suffer the consequences of those actions under the law.
I don’t believe our elders are fighting for that same kind of change.

I’ve been cursed out for supporting Governor Rick Scott. My attitude and response was, “so.” I happen to like him and his work. Should I be afraid to say so because I’m black?
I’ve been called the same for supporting a white candidate over a black candidate. My response and attitude is “so, squared.”

I lean toward people who have supported us with jobs, education and even the criminal justice system over anyone that has not, regardless of the color of their skin. That’s embedded in me. I can’t change it, nor do I want to. Don’t ask me to choose a party before I see proof of performance of a candidate and if you do, and your candidate wins without the proper vetting, you’ll regret it every single time. For the party has more power than the candidate. Which is why Republicans have gotten on board to support Donald Trump.

Black people are the only group of people expected to side with Democrats. That’s the reason Democrats don’t side with Black people.

Many, many older Black leaders have been around long enough to have lost their passion for the protest and would rather get something out of politics for themselves. They believe it’s a game. Wait…matter of fact, they know it’s a game. In every era, it’s the younger generation that believes so passionately that our leaders will do the right thing. In this open book of mine, which is me, the power lies fiercely in the appointed, not the elected.

The elected is already appointed.

We simply get to choose from the ones our elders have picked out for us. For example, my Aunt and my Mother, who are sisters, shop for me as much as they can. Don’t ask me why, but I can be their dress-up doll all day long and they’d be happy as unicorns and rainbows. I’ll usually wear whatever they give me. I couldn’t care less what’s on my body most of the time because I’m too busy with a million and one other things.

But, if I’m with them in the shopping mall, I get to choose from the 2 of 5 pieces of clothing they’ve put before me. Stay with me. I’m stating this for a reason. See, they’ve already sorted through hundreds of pieces of clothes, then they call me over. I then get to “elect” two pieces and then “appoint” the final piece in a quick draw between 2 to 5 narrowed down pieces.

And, here I am confused about which one to pick when I probably would have loved the very first item they picked up 4 hours before.
I’m ok with them doing that because it makes them happy and I don’t care what I wear. However, when it comes to politics and Black lives, a two party system is the same as Aunt Allie and Mama in the shopping mall. Analyze this. The brakes should get beat off of someone who tries to force a pair of red boots on me when the black ones are built to save my life and protect my people. Yet, they were in the pile that Mom pushed to the side at the start of the selection process.

This is the age when no one truly cares about the murders of unarmed black men. Some take bullets to the head while they lay on the ground, others are murdered in cold blood while running away and clearly not being a threat to anyone.

Where are our Black leaders?

Why aren’t they pushing for laws that change these kinds of things instead of fighting to have us choose between the final 2 pieces of clothing that we really care nothing about? What Black leaders have done and will likely continue to do, is bash my way of thinking because I think differently and I speak it loudly.

But, it’s because I so deeply care.

I want to see change and I can’t think of any better way to be more vocal than to just say it. I hope for an outcome of equality, not superiority.

Critically thinking Black people, are considered less Black than many who have experienced marching with Dr. King for our civil rights and that’s not ok. We are still just as Black as anyone else. Today, our elders have left you and me. So, we’re on our own, kids. I looked for help with Black caucuses in Florida. I sought help with Black women congress groups. I even accepted friendships so that I could be mentored by Black women who I thought wanted equality for Black people. I was wrong. I was called everything under the sun and it made my stomach turn watching them sell out and lie to our people in churches and town halls across the City of Orlando.
We see the lack of action in the NAACP and the complaints by old school leaders that young people aren’t involved enough. That couldn’t be farther from the truth. Young people aren’t agreeing with them enough. That’s the old folks’ problem and not a problem for the youth. That’s an excellent problem to give them and they should gift wrap it for the old. What many of our elders won’t do is tell you they want it done their way or the highway. They marched in the civil rights era. Yet, it wasn’t until Black people returned the actions of the oppressor that government got involved.

Some Black elders readily allow history books to preach and teach that Martin did it without Malcolm.

Some old Black leaders won’t tell you, people of all skin colors, races and demographics helped pave our way. We’d all love to say we did it ourselves. I believe we absolutely could have. But, we didn’t.

Nothing they can say can change history. Much of what happened at the polls that has led us into a race between the current two candidates is the fault of the old way of thinking and if anyone tells you millennials are hurting Democrats at the polls, know this, that’s a lie. Young people helped elect the first Black President and will do the same for Hillary Clinton but with significant reluctance.

Young people helped establish a progressive platform unlike anything in the past. Whether that platform gets implemented or not is a different story. And, young people are forcing the hands of their elders to change the course of voting in this country, even if it means casting a sacrificial vote. Gag. That sounds dangerous.

But, if their two-party system is as good as they say, why should we fear Donald Trump? If it’s their way or the highway, they are now sitting on the byway and underpass because young people are in charge. Just the threat of youth not going to the polls, leaves those who love the status quo, up at night. Change, has the tendency to do that.

To those young people who are fighting for real change, don’t quit. Don’t sell out. Don’t give up. You’ll be the reason why this planet is safer, an herb intended to be used for healing can and will be legally used and war will be no more. I am not just a dreamer. My position on an old way of thinking may sound harsh and it may be filled with words and an attitude that seems disrespectful to our elders, but it’s warranted. This generation is fired up. In order to ultimately see change, we have to be it.

Trump dominates the press while Democrats scramble to recover

In a recent campaign stop in Miami, Presidential hopeful Donald Trump challenged Hillary Clinton to “disarm her bodyguards and let’s see what happens then.” Whatever that means and for whatever reason he said it, it captured headlines.

It has nothing to do with poverty, crime, policing our streets, foreign policy, the national debt or any other issue in which a Presidential candidate should be focused.

On the other hand, Jimmy Fallon of NBC’s Tonight Show welcomed a recently sick Hillary Clinton right after he put a face mask over his nose and mouth pretending (or not) to be protecting himself from her recent bout with pneumonia.

In the press, neither candidate is strongly focused on the issues that should matter to Americans and Democrats don’t have enough collective intelligence to stop blaming Progressives to demand a race that is concentrated.

Many Democrats are “Clinton-Splaining” Hillary to many who support a progressive agenda. That discussion, all to often, seem to be a bloody battle leaving a long list of casualties in its path. Trying to instill fear in a millennial is like trying to move a sleeping rhinoceros from your pool deck. Die-hard Bernie Sanders supporters are unafraid of Donald Trump and they see both Presidential candidates as much of the same.

Stick with me here and trust me on this.

Many Progressives would rather see a Trump Presidency than a Clinton Presidency at this point. Here’s why.

In the eyes of many Berners, the nomination was like taking candy from a baby. Having Trump as President is payback for some who feel Bernie Sanders was cheated out of the nod from the Democratic Party and treated unfairly on the campaign trail. Many Berners also feel they were disenfranchised as well. So, largely, threats have not and are still not working.

The press surrounding the Congressional Black Caucus in Washington D.C. was less than exciting with the exception of former Orlando police chief and United States Candidate for Congress, Val Demings’ statement on Donald Trump’s announcement that President Barack Obama was born in the United States.

On MSNBC, Demings said, “Donald Trump is not the best that America has to offer. At a time when people are hurting, they’re struggling, they’re suffering, they’re afraid, instead of coming up with solutions that will make peoples’ lives better and improve the quality of life for Americans, Donald Trump is doing everything he can do divide. He’s a hater, he’s a bigot and he’s a racist.”
The press was also understandably overshadowed by the recent New York and New Jersey bombings.

Even without these urgent press events, the coverage surrounding the Congressional Black Caucus had no strong angle and no strong vocal communications to the press that would circumvent national news away from Trump except that of the President’s appearance and speech.

However, Donald Trump, is a master of manipulation and while the Congressional Black Caucus was kicking off, he managed to call a press conference, speak live on television, online and radio, for 20 minutes or more about his new hotel. Then he dropped the golden pinky-swear, that our POTUS actually was born in the United States after years of demanding President Obama show his birth certificate. Imagine that.

The press fell for it hook, line and sinker while Trump used earned media to get the attention of not only Republicans but Democrats as well.

This election is an embarrassment to our nation as a unit, to individuals who believe in democracy and to those who are too busy to be consumed by the details of politics on a daily basis while they entrust the democratic process to those who professionally and voluntarily lead it.

News outlets then leaned-in while Hillary Clinton called half of Trump’s supporters deplorable. Again, none of this has anything to do with the state of this country. It’s all ego-driven and seems more like a popularity contest than a campaign that should be designed to work best for the American people. It’s an insult.

Americans want to hear about things that will make our lives better, not just a rant or rave about how The Donald brushes his hair or what new girlfriend Bill Clinton has now.

Neither candidate has been strong on the issues and only one knows how to garner press and when he does, he parades his hotels and steaks in front of the camera and we, the press, shamefully, admire it, cover it and can’t get enough of it.

Even while Clinton was ill, the campaign handed Trump the press while they still allowed Clinton to do phone interviews from her sick bed. With all the excited Democrats down-ballot and the big one who’s elected at the top, the Hillary camp sat silent for 1.5 to two days after Hillary stumbled into that van while Orange Hitler, aka Donald Trump, (in the words of Bill Maher), took center stage and dominated the polls.

Finally, President Obama came out and stomped for Hillary telling the crowd how much he loves her. He said it like he was being forced to eat peas and if he said it loud enough and convincing enough, that he may just convey to the American people that he does like Hillary.

Let’s face it, this is a lackluster, pasty, election and we are all trying so hard to keep focused on who we need to vote for in November and most importantly, why we must vote for them. So far, we haven’t seen much of why we need to be so passionate in this election except the “fear” component, which seems to be the only backup plan each party is using to sway voters.
Again, on MSNBC, Bernie Sanders made an appeal to millennials, “Before you cast a protest vote, think hard about it.”

As a supervoter, I will listen to that appeal and as always, think hard about who I will vote for this election cycle and why even though my faith in the process fits the mold of many Progressives who are not consumed with fear from either party or candidate. Equally as important, I’m concerned with why the vacancy is still open on the Supreme Court of the United States and why we are not fighting as a party and as the press, to allow our sitting President to appoint someone to the seat(s) that remain vacant.

The Top 5 Races to Watch in Central Florida

On a national scale, there’s no question this election season will be exciting. Along the spectrum, it could be interesting and even possibly depressing, for some.

With Donald Trump being the presumptive nominee of the Republican Party, the silent majority has spoken so far and they apparently agree with Trump’s anti-Muslim, anti-Mexican, anti-Women rhetoric. As for Black people, well, he has Black friends and his daughter is married to a Jewish man.

The previous sentence was written with the most sarcasm I could possibly put into words.

That’s about as much as we know about Trump’s views on how he personally and professionally feels about people of color and that’s plenty. Besides the soon-to-be bland Presidential general race, we have local races that can directly change communities of color and hopefully reshape the United States Senate. Yes, that drag of a Senate that refuses to not even so much as grant a hearing for President Obama’s nominee to the Supreme Court.

Closer to home, we need serious change in Central Florida’s Black and Brown communities and it doesn’t only come with a change in current elected and appointed officials. All races are important, however, the top 5 races to watch closely will indeed shape the next 2-4 years of Black and Brown life in Central Florida if we choose wisely.

 

  1. State Attorney: The State Attorney’s race is indeed shaping up to be both exciting and interesting as current State Attorney, Jeff Ashton, is challenged by his former employee, Aramis Ayala. Both are Democrats. While Ashton is still favored in the race, he won with an estimated 47% of the Black vote and 42% of the Latino vote. Ayala is Black and her husband is Latino which leads some to assume Ayala could have a real shot at this office based on the demographics. However, that is an assumption that all people of color vote for people of color and that’s not accurate. While it’s not impossible, it is hard to be an incumbent. Ashton is not only known for his role in the Casey Anthony trial but, quite frankly, he’s a brilliant attorney even outside of that one case. He was the first attorney to earn a conviction by introducing DNA as evidence in 1987. Ashton is favored by many because he’s more experienced and has a strong track record. He ran a successful campaign against Lawson Lamar calling out most of the things that Black and Brown people hold near and dear. Especially, the “improper” prison sentences Lamar was known for supporting.
  2. Congressional District 10: With this race, we have the potential to elect a Black woman as a U.S. Representative in this area. With the newly drawn lines, Representative Daniel Webster (R), who currently holds the seat, has chosen to run in District 11 instead of District 10, while former Orlando Police Chief Val Demings (D) shapes the race as the favored candidate. Businessman Bob Poe, Senator Geraldine Thompson and Attorney Fatima Rita Fahmy, all Democrats, also challenge Demings in the race for the seat.
  3. Senate District 13: State Representative Randolph Bracy, Jr (D), former Senator Gary Siplin (D), Environmentalist Chuck O’Neal (D) and former State Representative Bob Sindler (D) have all raised a pretty decent amount of money according to their financial reports for this Senate seat previously occupied by Senator Geraldine Thompson. While this is a hard race to call “favorites,” name recognition may be what it all boils down to. The Bracy name is well-known in the community because of his parents and their success as Pastors and their work with the community, local and national politics. But, young Bracy has to earn a “name” for himself when it comes to drafting legislation that creates positive change. Siplin brings his name recognition to the table as well as he not only served as Senator but has served the community as an attorney and was known for his backpack giveaways each year before school starts, which also happened to always be around primary elections.
  4. Senator Marco Rubio’s Current Seat: This race is known to most people as “Rubio’s seat.” It will be a knock-down, drag-out fight simply because Alan “say my name” Grayson is in the race. Grayson always makes a splash wherever he goes. He’s a registered Democrat but acts more like an Independent. As Rubio makes his exit, many believe he was always preparing himself for the role of President while neglecting his responsibilities as Senator. Rubio (R) didn’t vote on issues that had a direct impact on his constituents, Alan Grayson (D), Patrick Murphy (Republican turned Democrat) and Pam Keith (D) are all vying for former Presidential Candidate and current Senator Marco Rubio’s seat. Keith is the only woman and only person of color in this race. One thing that stood out to me when I spoke with Pam Keith is her passion for issues that matter to Black people. She is passionate about the Black Lives Matter movement which may drive younger people to the polls in her favor. Recently, in his final time as Senator, Rubio visited Orlando and went to the often talked about Windsor Cove Apartments and called the owners “slumlords”.
  5. The Race for Weed: In a sense, Attorney and activist John Morgan of nationally known law firm, Morgan and Morgan, is the favored candidate when it comes to the legalization of medical marijuana commonly called “pot” in Florida. Everyone seems to have their eyes on this race as last election cycle it narrowly failed to pass. Now, medical marijuana will be on the Presidential ballot. Presidential races always bring out more voters, so many anticipate this time around the legalization of cannabis is within reach.

Elections should not be a popularity contest nor should they propel reality show excitement in voters. Elections are serious business and shouldn’t be taken lightly. As we move forward with debates, Q&A’s with candidates and as we gather other information, possibly, we will be able to make decisions that will help create the communities we desire.

Donald Trump is not a Republican & Republicans should be angry

If you get nothing from this commentary, please get this next sentence.

We are watching the Tea Party run the Republican side of this election season.

The Republican party was used, suckered, pimped into giving up their chance at having a front-runner and in the midst, the Tea Party moved in on the Republican Party like a lazy relative, with no job, that needs a place to stay.

Unfortunately, Republicans said nothing to get that lazy relative out of their space. They kindly hoped he would fall off and no one would take him seriously. Frankly, so did I. Yet, the Tea Party used the Republican party to push their candidate out front and guess what, they’re winning. The Tea Party is winning; not the Republican party. This race has a Democratic front-runner and a Tea Party front runner.

If Trump wins the nomination, there will be no Republican in the race once we get down to the nominees and after New Hampshire, more will have to fall out of the race because of the Tea Party’s candidate.

What a dirty way to get in the game, right?

What’s incredible is the Tea Party is not ashamed nor do they think twice before pushing out rhetoric and pictures that are racist.

That’s no republican speaking folks. That’s the Tea Party in it’s full and creepy, backwards-thinking glory.

In response, the Tea Party will swear to you they are not radically racist people. Unfortunately, they allow Donald Trump to spew his racists words against Blacks, Mexicans, Muslims, while he degrades and uses our Veterans, women and the disabled to his advantage.

Trump elevated himself in this race not because he’s loved and respected by the masses but because there are so many people in this world that adamantly agree with his racial viewpoints. One woman at his rally said she believes Obama is racist towards white people and he only favors “The Blacks”.

These people also have front row seats to his shenanigans because he threw himself into a race as a Republican when he should have run as a Tea Party candidate. Trump can mouse around with politics because he has quite a bit of money to fund himself. In 2016, when the voting power of all those he degraded is more powerful, there’s still a group of your neighbors and mine, that support Trump and his actions.

When Black and Brown children are being taunted in school because of their race or religion, this Trump-loving group or American adults find it entertaining, funny and they sit back and allow it to happen and continue. They don’t even speak out against the terrible actions done to children as a result.

What makes this sickening is what we unfortunately have to witness this from people we call our friends and neighbors. Just watch what they post on social media and listen to what they say.

Most of all, Republicans should be downright angry that they were used by the Tea Party to get ahead. In Florida, Democrats generally may have not agreed with the policies and procedures of Governor Jeb Bush or Governor Rick Scott, but some Democrats even mention they have never seen a Republican act this way before.

The Tea Party is a political party that should have had enough gumption to stand on their own and not ride the backs of the Republican party and its base.

Trump pushed out the Republicans that had a chance and more than anything, the Republican base should be outraged.

They were used, bullied, taken over by a group of people that do not completely share their ideals and values.

The money supporters put behind the Republican candidates they believed in, should have never had to share the stage with a Tea Party candidate in disguise. Those supporters of Trump like Sarah Palin and her crew dogged the Republican Party and its voters.

The Republican party will now silently lose so much respect from those who are Black and Brown that supported the agenda of Republicans because they believed in the conservative values. Governor Rick Perry and former Presidential Candidate, is the only one that had enough sense to realize this was going in a direction in which it should not and he gracefully bowed-out of the race early on.

Trump has redefined being a modern day, rich, racist in America. It has sadly allowed this man to rise to the top of the Republican party. A party which he does not belong. He belongs in the party he is silently representing and it’s about time someone called him on the carpet and slammed him back into the group of racists from which he came.

As long as Black and Brown people, women, our Veterans and the disabled are sitting on the sidelines asking for a handout, these chumps are fine, but the moment they have benefits in place to help them pull themselves up to upper-class or upper middle class Americans, Trump and his followers will tear them down with no second thought.

What we can do about it is vote. Vote often and vote with passion. Regardless of your party affiliation, speak up about this injustice to the Republican Party because as Martin Luther King, Jr said, “injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” In this case, that statement is true for all Americans.

Trump

Tea Party & Donald Trump