Earlier this week on the #FakeNewsNetwork CNN, Marc Lamont Hill said President-elect Donald Trump’s diversity coalition are “a bunch of mediocre negroes being dragged in front of TV as a photo-op for Donald Trump’s exploitative campaign against black people.”
The Morehouse College professor also made his feelings about Steve Harvey’s meeting with Donald Trump very clear:
…my disagreement is the way in which [Steve Harvey is] being used by folk like Donald Trump. Again, his intention is just to have a seat at the table. But when you’re at the table, you should have experts at the table. You should have people who can challenge the president at the table. … Because all — because they keep bringing up comedians and actors and athletes to represent black interests is demeaning, it’s disrespectful, and it’s condescending. Bring some people up there with some expertise, Donald Trump, don’t just bring up people to entertain.”
For my own sanity, I had to take a trip down memory lane.
In June 2008, Barack Obama refused to meet with the black power brokers in Harlem, which led to Jesse Jackson desperately wishing to “cut his [Barack Obama’s] nuts out.”
In March 2010, to flex their muscles, the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) voted unanimously against an Obama “jobs” bill. They got a meeting. As Congresswoman Yvette Clarke (B-NY) explained:
[President Obama] reached out to us because last week the caucus in a show of unity did something unprecedented in quite some time, actually. And that is to stand together to vote against what was called the jobs bill last week. We felt that it was important to highlight the fact that while we understand the crisis that small business is facing, the bill fell woefully short in terms of addressing needs in communities of color to really get people employed.
In August 2011, while speaking before an audience at Detroit’s Wayne County Community College, another Congressional Black Caucus member, Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-CA), was asked why Obama wasn’t visiting black communities during his bus tour of Midwestern states. She responded:
We’re supportive of the president, but we’re getting tired. We’re getting tired. And so, what we want to do is, we want to give the president every opportunity to show what he can do and what he’s prepared to lead on. We want to give him every opportunity, but our people are hurting. The unemployment is unconscionable. We don’t know what the strategy is. We don’t know why on this trip that he’s in the United States now, he’s not in any black community. We don’t know that.”
In 2012, it was so bad, there was a Change.org petition for President Obama to meet with the Congressional Black Caucus. The petition read:
Congresswoman Marica Fudge (D-OH) who leads the Congressional Black Caucus, (CBC) has asked for a meeting with President Obama since January. The President still has not found time to meet with the CBC, though he seems to find time to meet with every other constituency. True, he has lots on his plate. But is is very disrespectful NOT to have this meeting with a key core constituency, especially one that voted for him at 97 percent. At this point in The Obama Presidency, this is a disgraceful way to treat the duly elected Congressional representatives of his core national African American constituency. National Black Wall Street USA movement joins the call for President Obama to immediately schedule a meeting with The Congressional Black Caucus!
In July 2013, the Congressional Black Caucus FINALLY got another meeting with President Obama. They discussed voting rights, the economy, and immigration. However, a follow-up meeting wasn’t scheduled.
In August 2014, riots started in Ferguson, Missouri. The Justice Department was dispatched, and this entire record of disrespect by the first black President towards the Congressional Black Caucus was forgotten. All the CBC wanted was a seat at the table. These are the experts, right?
The purpose for my trip down memory lane wasn’t to play “hypocrisy gotcha” with Marc Lamont Hill. I wanted to remind the American people, and the Congressional Black Caucus, how irrelevant the CBC has been to Barack Obama’s presidency. That reminder is important as Congressman John Lewis (D-GA) is championed for standing up to Donald Trump, when he couldn’t even get a meeting with Barack Obama. If I can paraphrase the words of Marc Lamont Hill, they — the Congressional Black Caucus — couldn’t even get a seat at the table, and they are the experts.
What’s really funny? On December 14, 2016, I tweeted: “Trump invites Blacks with ideas on improving communities. Obama invites them to perform.”
Trump invites Blacks with ideas on improving communities. Obama invites them to perform.
— DidSheSayThat (@SonnieJohnson) December 14, 2016
The comment was in relation to President-elect Donald Trump meeting with Ray Lewis and Jim Brown. I’m guessing these are the “athletes” whose meetings with Trump Marc Lamont Hill finds “condescending.” I refuse to justify Marc Lamont Hill’s characterization of these men by stating their rags to riches stories. I don’t defend men. I defend ideas, and Marc Lamont Hill’s idea of black mediocrity needs to be exposed.
This is why I love Breitbart. Let me turn into #DidSheSayThat Sonnie Johnson real quick.
I have been fighting the Republicans and conservatives to include black culture for years. In fact, the entire #DidSheSayThat podcast is a mix of conservative intellect with Hip Hop culture. It’s what I do.
By choosing this path, I have lost my seat at the “conservative intellectual” table. Republicans and conservatives looked at Hip Hop artists as nothing but entertainers. For years I’ve argued they are entrepreneurs, spouses, parents — they came from these Democratic hellholes, and they can help get the people out. While my intellect has never been questioned and my conservatism is second to none, my love of Hip Hop and support of its culture only have a home on Breitbart.
If you ask an African American Republican or conservative intellectual about me, they would probably label me… mediocre. I don’t use their buzzwords, source their white papers, or talk about the Democrat plantation. I must come to them humbly, acknowledge their years of Republican service, and denounce Hip Hop to receive my place at the table. Not happening.
This is not a trait of the Progressive left. This is a trait of the elites in BOTH political parties. President-elect Donald Trump is changing that, and I pray the more people like Marc Lamont Hill criticize his outreach, the more he understands it’s working.