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March 29, 2005

Black churches may explore the GOP

The Baltimore Sun has an interesting article on some political ferment in the black churches, with some clergy exploring support for Republicans. The article reports on a clergyman who works closely with white Christian conservatives.

NAACP Chairman Julian Bond, representing the reactionary wing of black America, accuses these clergy of being bought off by faith-based grants from the Bush administration. The article cites critics like Bond as making the ludicrous charge that "the black church risks losing its independence and abandoning its history of advocating for social justice." Losing its independence? The black vote is almost monolithically Democratic, so what independence is being lost by exploring support for the other party? (Believe me, as a Jew I am very sensitive to the one-party mentality.)

The article closes with this:

Harry Jackson, the Lanham reverend and a Democrat who voted for Bush, talks about bridging the gap between left and right, arguing that African-Americans have been "duped" by liberal black leadership.

"The Congressional Black Caucus hasn't made any changes, all they do is give a bunch of excuses," he says. "We need a little tough love instead of all this crying racism and saying 'the man is against you.' It's too simplistic."

The answer is within the black church, he says.

"There is a new black church with the Bible as a clear guide," Jackson told his congregation recently. "It is that group of people who is going to lead the nation morally."
We need people who will lead morally, and when I say "we" I don't mean Republicans; I mean all Americans.