As an American political party that grew out of the slavery question, is the Republican Party ignoring its African-American constituency at its own peril?
By: Vanessa Uy
Often referred to as the political party spearheaded by Abraham Lincoln that lead to the emancipation of the slaves who are of Black African descent and thought them the value of free enterprise. Though conceptually it viewed slavery and polygamy as morally reprehensible barbarism, the Republican Party has since then – and still is - played a major part in shaping the United States into the most powerful country in the world. Even though Honest Abe would find that in its current incarnation, the Republican Party is a wholly different animal from the one he founded over a hundred years ago.
The Republican Party does have African-Americans that had done their part in preparing the United States for the 21st Century. It would we inconceivable to imagine America’s victory in the first Gulf War without Colin Powell, or Condoleeza Rice keeping Bush Administration’s Neo-Conservative’s and their “excesses” in check. But the question now is, what the Republican Party must do to in order to distance itself from the women-as-God-fearing-male-subordinate ideologue of Alaskan Governor Sarah Palin during her ill-conceived vice presidential candidacy?
Well, not much if you think that the party is already very much corrupted – and co-opted - by extreme right-wing Christianity during the Reagan years. But I do believe that there’s still plenty of life left in the Republican Party. If only they’ll take the steps in reexamining the ideals exemplified by Abraham Lincoln. Which is kind of hard given that the news footage being aired of the recent McCain-Palin rallies consists mainly of the “older White demographic” who might be old enough to remember the days when gasoline was still being sold at 10 or 25 US cents per gallon.
Believe it or not, some political pundits even think that Barack Obama being elected into the US Presidency could be a good thing for the Republican Party. Is it maybe that because Abraham Lincoln’s vision of equality of all men is now one step closer, only at the cost of the victory of a rival party candidate? But hey, as it was noted throughout history, reforms aren’t always painless as their authors and planners might suggest.