Friday, May 4, 2018
Donald Trump and Kanye West -- Healing America
THERE IS REALLY GOOD NEWS TODAY. Generic Republican Senate candidates beat Democrat generic candidates in a majority of battleground states. • • • THE SENATE RACE IS STILL TO BE WON BUT...The Washington Free Beacon reported on Thursday that in recent polling of 12 battleground states, generic Republican Senate candidates lead in seven states by an average of 6.3%. The Free Beacon says : "Democrats are counting on a massive wave to give them control of the Senate this year; however, the April polls show the party may have a difficult time winning some key seats. The Morning Consult poll results show 12 states where Senate seats are up for election this year, and of the 12, Democrats will be defending seats in 10 of them. The seats that would currently remain Republican or flip from Democrat to Republican, according to the poll, include those in Arizona, Florida, Missouri, Indiana, West Virginia, North Dakota, and Montana. Arizona : the open seat vacated by GOP Senator Jeff Flake would go to a Republican, 40%-34%. Florida : the Republican (Governor Rick Scott beats the Democrat (incumbent Bill Nelson), 38-37%. Indiana : the Republican beats the Democrat (incumbent Joe Donnelly), 39-34%. Missouri : the Republican (Attorney General Josh Hawley beats the Democrat (incumbent Claire McCaskill), 38-33%. Montana : the Republican beats the Democrat (incumbent Jon Tester), 42-37%. North Dakota : the Republican (Rep. Kevin Cramer) beats the Democrat (incumbent Heidi Heitkamp), 38-30%. West Virginia: the Republican beats the Democrat (incumbent Joe Manchin), 43-29%." • Of the 12 states, Democrats would only gain a seat in one, Nevada, according to the poll. In the 5 states where Democrats lead, they lead by an average of only 2.6%. Republicans currently maintain a slim majority in the Senate, with 51 of the 100 seats. If the balance of power is tied 50-50, Republicans will retain the majority because of Vice President Mike Pence's Senate President tie-breaker role. As the Morning Consult poll shows, Republicans have the opportunity to expand their majority, although many Democrats and pundits believe the Democratic Party will take back control of the Senate. Republicans have been in the majority since 2014. • • • WONDER WHY Black DEMOCRATS ARE MOVING TO TRUMP? Look no further than these stories -- obviously outliers among Black Americans, but surely weighing on them as Americans. The Washington Examiner reported on Thursday that : "The Associated Press stealth-edited a story about anti-Semitic conspiracy theories peddled by a Washington, DC, government official Wednesday after initially omitting he was a Democrat. City council member Trayon White drew controversy in March for blaming a snowfall on a Jewish conspiracy, posting a Facebook video where he said the 'Rothschilds controlling the climate to create natural disasters they can pay for to own the cities, man. Be careful.' The Rothschilds are a European business dynasty descended from a Jewish banker, and they have often been the subject of anti-Semitic conspiracy theories. White said he was unaware at the time that he was peddling such a conspiracy theory, but his efforts to repair the damage made matters worse, culminating in him asking questions during a Holocaust Museum visit that showed a severe lack of knowledge about the genocide. In a story entitled 'Anti-Semitic Conspiracy Theories Roil DC City Government,' the Associated Press reporter identified the controversies, but he did not initially indicate White was a Democrat, according to the Washington Examiner. The initial report read, 'White said he was unaware the Rothschild theory could be construed as anti-Semitic. The first-term African-American councilman reached out to try to mend fences, but several of the gestures seem to have made things worse.' The article now reads, 'White, 33, who like most city officials is a Democrat, said he was unaware the Rothschild theory could be construed as anti-Semitic. The first-term African-American council member reached out to try to mend fences, but several of the gestures seem to have made things worse.' There is no note on the article about any update being made. The AP report went on to discuss White also making a reference to the Rothschilds during a February meeting of city officials, where he indicated they controlled both the World Bank and the federal government. The video shows city leaders in the room, including Mayor Muriel Bowser, awkwardly laughing it off and moving on, but the footage further upset Jewish community leaders. Then a further revelation : White had contributed $500 from a fund meant for his Ward 8 constituents to a Chicago event for Louis Farrakhan, leader of the Nation of Islam. Farrakhan and the Nation of Islam have a decades-old history of overtly anti-Semitic rhetoric. The Nation of Islam also does significant social and charitable work in Black communities and retains some respect among those who don’t share its views. Bowser is not identified as a Democrat. The Examiner also noted that DC Public Housing Authority board member Josh Lopez, who organized a rally to support White, and councilmember Jack Evans, who is quoted as hoping fences can be mended in the situation, are not identified as Democrats, either." No wonder !! • If that is not enough reason for Black Democrats to favor President Trump, try this. The Washington Free Beacon reports that : "Representative Gregory Meeks (D., N.Y.), a [Black] Democrat, refused to give President Donald Trump any credit Thursday for the state of negotiations with North Korea, instead focusing his praise on South Korean President Moon Jae-in. CNN’s Poppy Harlow brought up the pending release of detained US citizens in North Korea, which the administration has said is 'imminent,' and Meeks said the credit for their release goes to Moon. Harlow and John Berman repeatedly asked Meeks why he would not commend Trump’s actions at all, but the congressman maintained Moon is the driving force of the negotiations. 'I want American citizens to come home, but when I look at the whole deal with North Korea, it seems to me that all of what was started was started with President Moon,' Meeks said. Meeks went on to explain how Moon has communicated behind the scenes with the North and with China, but he failed to mention the US has also been in communication with those countries and has put pressure on North Korea with sanctions. Harlow brought up the fact that Moon has given Trump credit for the negotiations, and Berman inquired whether Trump deserves credit for the atmosphere that is forcing North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un to the table. Meeks granted that 'a number of individuals can take credit,' but would not say Trump was one of those individuals. 'If you talk about whole the North Korea-South Korea peace, the reason why we are where we are is President Moon,' Meeks said. 'It seems like you're doing everything you can to not say the president deserves credit,' Harlow replied. 'Is he doing a better job, for instance, than the Obama administration did or the Bush administration or the Clinton administration, handling North Korea right now?' Meeks did not answer the question, preferring to describe how Moon has taken the lead in starting a 'dialogue' with the North. 'President Moon got elected based upon the fact that he wanted a better relationship with North Korea, and he went about doing it at the same time that President Trump was calling [Kim] ‘rocket man,’ Meeks said. The hosts asked Meeks a total six times whether Trump deserved any credit for the negotiations. After Meeks answered for the final time, Berman noted 'Trump was part of the equation.' " • • • NOW, CONSIDER KANYE WEST. The rapper mega-star who has recently beentalking about free thinking and labeling people and praising President Trump, telling Black Americans that they do not have to be Democrats, has gotten not only a lot of media coverage but also a lot of thoughtful reactions from the Black community. • Now, Kanye has turned to the very sensitive subject of slavery. The media was full of reports about Kanye West's confrontation in the TMZ newsroom, when the rapper talked about his view on slavery as well as reaffirming his support for Donald Trump. Kanye said : “When you hear about slavery for 400 years. For 400 years? That sounds like a choice. You was there for 400 years and it’s all of y’all. It’s like we’re mentally in prison. I like the word prison because slavery goes too direct to the idea of Blacks. Slavery is to Blacks as the Holocaust is to Jews. Prison is something that unites as one race, Blacks and whites, that we’re the human race.” TMZ reporter Van Lathan shot back at him : “I actually don’t think you’re thinking anything.” While you are making music and being an artist and living the life that you’ve earned by being a genius, the rest of us in society have to deal with these threats to our lives.” • West’s comments have been met by anger and incredulity. Fellow rapper Will.i.am told Good Morning Britain that West’s comments were “ignorant” and “broke my heart...when you’re a slave, you’re owned...that’s not choice, that’s by force.” Prominent civil rights activist Deray McKesson said West “continues to fuel the racist right-wing folks who believe that Black people are responsible for their oppression,” while fellow activist and TV host Marc Lamont Hill wrote : “There has never been a moment in history when Black people didn’t resist slavery...Our resistance led to our freedom.” • Earlier in the TMZ conversation, West reaffirmed his support for Trump calling him his “boy” and explaining why he tweeted a picture wearing a Make America Great Again cap : “I felt a freedom in doing something that everybody tells you not to do.” Kanye West is releasing two new albums out in June. And, he released two new tracks last weekend, including Ye Vs the People, where he elaborates on his support for Trump with another nod to slavery : “See that’s the problem with this damn nation / All Blacks gotta be Democrats, man, we ain’t made it off the plantation.” Referring to the Make America Great Again cap also worn by Trump, he rapped : “Make America Great Again had a negative perception / I took it, wore it, rocked it, gave it a new direction / Added empathy, care and love and affection.” • Of the Progressive and Black celebrity outrage over his comments on slavery, Kanye tweeted : “Once again I am being attacked for presenting new ideas.” He also posted a quote from 19th-century anti-slavery activist Harriet Tubman : “I freed a thousand slaves; I could have freed a thousand more if only they knew they were slaves,” suggesting an ongoing kind of slavery, a topic he explored previously in his 2013 track New Slaves. “You know that niggas can’t read / Throw ‘em some Maybach keys,” he rapped. “Spending everything on [designer] Alexander Wang : new slaves.” • Kanye West has had his troubles. He was hospitalized in 2016 with a "mental breakdown" and is now on medication that he says "helps calm me down.” He calls his two-week spell in hospital in 2016 a “breakthrough,” not a breakdown. The rapper has also expressed hurt over Barack Obama calling him a “jackass” in 2009 : “Don’t tell the world I’m a jackass. I’m fighting hard enough. Something about me going on stage was similar to what you was doing. ’Cause I’m fighting to break the simulation, break the setup. That didn’t make no sense.” • Unlike the ProgDems who pushed to put the indomitable Harriet Tubman on the $20 bill, West said : “When I saw Harriet Tubman on the $20 bill, that’s when I wanted to use bitcoin. It’s like all the slave movies. Why you gotta keep reminding us about slavery? Why don’t you put Michael Jordan on the $20 bill?” • Kanye -- that is an excellent question. Why not ??? • • • KANYE IS DOING SOMETHING RIGHT. According to a Reuters poll, approval for President Trump has doubled between April 22 and April 29, from 11% to 22%, among the 200 Black men polled the week after Kanye West began talking up President Trump -- 200 Black men is not statistically valid, but it makes a valid point. Trump’s overall approval among Black Americans also nearly doubled, with a jump from 8.9% to 16.5%. Opinions on Trump among Black males were hardened on the 22nd when only 1.5% said they have “mixed feelings” on the President. But, a week later that number jumped to 7.1%, suggesting that Kanye West’s goal of unlocking the mind to see outside the Left’s Thought Plantation is reaching people. • And, the Progressive elites are very worried -- hence their efforts to ostracize Kanye West and prevent more erosion in their +90% death grip on the Black American vote. Breitbart notes that : "Overall, these might seem like small shifts -- 11% to 22%, or 8.9% to 16.5%. This looks like it is still an awfully low level of support. The truth, though, is that (if these numbers are more than just statistical noise), if there truly is an increase of support for Trump among Black voters, even an increase that is half of what we are seeing here, the real world effect could be monumental. We live in a 50/50 country where big elections are won and lost on the smallest of margins. Democrats maintain their coalition by cobbling countless coalitions. If just one of those coalitions, most especially Black voters who reliable vote for Democrats in the 95% margin, crumbles even a little bit, the whole house of cards will come tumbling down." And, says Breitbart : "This is exactly why Kanye West is under such withering fire right now, in both the media and popular culture. West has the cultural power to break this coalition merely by saying what he has been saying, merely by questioning what he has described as the 'slavery of the mind' when it comes to voting for Democrats. Therefore, before he can be allowed to break this hold, like Clarence Thomas, Herman Cain, and Ben Carson before him, West must be destroyed." • While the ProgDem elite's media is calling West a “gift to racists,” he is actually standing out courageously on the advance point -- forcing Black Americans to rethink why they lock-step vote for Democrats who have given them little attention except at election time and who have kept them poor, badly educated, jobless, and on welfare dependency. Breitbart notes that "the personal attacks on West" will only continue, but "if West continues to hold his ground and if these numbers look the same come November, second only to Trump will West be targeted for annihilation. If this poll is correct, it is not so much that Kanye West is changing minds, it is more that he is making it okay to admit what you believe. In other words, he is legitimizing a line of thought in Black America that has been declared off limits. That, of course, terrifies the organized left and the media more than anything." • • • WHAT DO BLACK AMERICANS BELIEVE? The Reagan Project's Fritz Pettijohn wrote on his blog Thursday about another poll showing that Black Americans are overwhelmingly Christian and that the "bicoastal elite that runs the Democratic party is bigoted against Christians." • The Pew Research Center poll was the subject of an essay by David French of National Review on Wednesday. French wrote about the results of "a fascinating Pew Research Center survey of faith in America. There’s a big 'God gap' between Republicans and Democrats -- 70% of Republicans believe in the God of the Bible compared with 45% of Democrats -- but there’s an even larger God gap within the Democratic party. Only 32% of white Democrats believe in the God of the Bible, compared with 61% of nonwhite Democrats -- an almost 30-point gap." French says that if one spends much time in secular progressive circles, "you’ll quickly encounter the kind of sneering, anti-Christian elitism evident in pieces such as the recent New Yorker screed against Chick-fil-A. But this culture is fundamentally at odds with the lived experience of the Democratic party’s Black and Latino base. As Yale’s Stephen Carter wrote, 'When you mock Christians, you’re not mocking who you think you are.' ” • Carter was, noted French, citing an earlier Pew Survey that details the deep faith of the American Black community : "Overall, people of color are more likely than whites to be Christians -- and pretty devout Christians at that. Some 83% of all Black Americans are absolutely certain that God exists. No other group comes close to this figure. Black Christians are far more likely than white Christians (84% to 64%) to describe religion as very important in their lives. Of all ethnic groups, Black Christians are the most likely to attend services, pray frequently and read the Bible regularly. They are also -- here’s the kicker -- most likely to believe that their faith is the place to look for answers to questions about right and wrong. And they are, by large margins, the most likely to believe that the Bible is the literally inerrant word of God. In short, if you find Christian traditionalism creepy, it’s Black people you’re talking about." • But, says David French : "There are longstanding, profound, and heartbreaking racial divisions in American Christianity. And there are people -- Black and white, left and right -- who perpetuate and exploit that divide. In spite of the common faith of white and Black Christians, they don’t share common politics. Why? The answer is complicated, but part of it is regional, and a lot of it is historical. America’s most religious region is also the region most steeped in the legacy of slavery and Jim Crow. White Christians and Black Christians have always been profoundly segregated in the South, and that Sunday-morning segregation continues to this day." • But, at the same time, says French : "the Democrats’ emerging God gap creates its own tensions. It creates its own cultural differences, and to the extent that faith informs politics, it could crack open the Progressive coalition. It won’t, however, so long as identity politics dominates American life..." • • • DEAR READERS, French goes on, as a #NeverTrumper would, to attack the President and trash the good news that Black Americans have at last found a Black icon who is telling them to think for themselves and vote to support their needs, values and hopes for their own future. As Kanye put it in one of his raps : “See that’s the problem with this damn nation / All Blacks gotta be Democrats, man, we ain’t made it off the plantation.” • The lessons here are twofold. • First, we as Republicans have so often done so badly at bringing Blacks into our party that I have wondered for years how to do better -- who and how to make it work. It is not that the GOP is full of racists. That is just not true. But, it is true that we have been browbeaten into believing that Blacks are 'owned' by the Democratic Party, hate us and will never join any GOP or conservative group. Yet, Justice Thomas, Thomas Sowell, and Condaleezza Rice are great examples of Black Americans who have represented the conservative agenda and thrived on it. But, they, and any Black who succeeds as a Republican, have been quickly labeled as Uncle Toms who deserve to be kicked out of the Black America universe. It just may be that Kanye West is changing that dynamic. Now, it is our turn, once more, to step up and prove htat he is speaking truth, that the GOP was founded ot free Black Americans and that ti is their party, prhaps more htna it is hte party of any other group of Americans. • Second, if we look at the Pew Research Center study on American religion, one thing fairly jumps out -- Black Democrats are far closer to both white and Black Republicans -- at 70% -- in their belief in the Christian God of the Bible. And, Black Democrats agree at 61%. BUT, only 32% of white Democrats believe in the God of the Bible. There is a brotherhood and sisterhood in this that all Christians should rejoice in and encourage. If the politics of America is so badly damaged that it will not be repaired by either party any time soon, then now is the time for Christian Americans, Black and white, to stand up, stand together, and stand for the Christian faith that has made America strong and successful. To champion Christianity is truly to champion America. There is room for all of every persuasion who accept that America is a Christian nation based on Christian values ready to share them with anyone who does not set out to destroy those values. Christianity can provide a unifying force that transcends politics and puts America on a healing path. • President Trump knows this. He announced Thursday that he will sign an executive order creating a White House Faith and Opportunity Initiative to "recognize the vital role of faith" in America. In his remarks for the National Day of Prayer, the President emphasized religious liberty and said his faith initiative will ensure the government gives equal treatment to religious organizations, saying : "The faith initiative will help design new policies that recognize the vital role of faith in our families, our communities, and our great country. This office will also help ensure that faith-based organizations have equal access to government funding and the equal right to exercise their deeply held beliefs." While this initiative is similar to those in the Bush and Obama administrations, President Trump also talked about religious liberty more broadly : "Across the government we have taken action to defend the religious conscience of doctors, nurses, teachers, students, and groups like the Little Sisters of the Poor. In January of this year, I was proud to be the first president to stand here in the Rose Garden to address the March for Life. In addition, President Trump noted "horrible" religious persecution abroad, saying his administration has "spoken out against" it and is "taking action." He said he seeks to protect religious freedom because America’s religious heritage has had such a sweeping impact on its culture : "Faith has forged the identity and the destiny of this great nation that we all love. Americans of faith have built the hospitals that care for our sick, the homes that tend to our elderly, and the charities that house the orphaned. They minister to the poor so beautifully and with such love. We are proud of our religious heritage and as President, I will always protect religious liberty." • As we are taught from childhood, God works in mysterious ways. Perhaps Kanye West is the latest of God's mysterious works for the good of humankind. • • • If you missed President Trump's rousing, positive, and upbeat speech at the NRA convention on Friday afternoon, watch it now at < https://youtu.be/0tyi5j3PIzY >.