Obama’s failed Black legacy
By Clarence McKee
Special to the Outlook
Barack Obama’s greatest legacy and accomplishment was being elected as the first Black president of the United States.
For Black Americans, it has been downhill ever since, from “Yes we can” to “No he didn’t.”
Yes, there was a certain pride in all Black Americans that a Black man had been elected President of the United States, where hundreds of years earlier Blacks suffered through slavery, racism, and not that far back, blatant racial discrimination in virtually every segment of society and part of the country — some of which continues to this day.
Black Americans particularly had high hopes that many of their concerns and issues would be addressed — inferior schools, high unemployment, especially among Black youth, violent crime, and gang-terrorized inner cities to name just a few. Black parents could tell their Black children, especially boys, “See what you can become.”
White Americans felt and hoped that his election signaled a new “post-racial” America. For many Whites, especially many in the media, his election gave them a “thrill up the leg” showing that they and the country were not racist. He would bring America, Black and White, rich and poor, together.
Both were duped.
Four years into his presidency, he answered those who felt he could do more for Black America, saying in a Black Enterprise magazine interview, that, “I am not the President of Black America; I am the President of the United States of America.”
However, he has not hesitated to be president of: gay rights and same-sex marriage America; extreme environmentalists and climate change America; open borders America; and protect the “dreamers” — children born to illegal immigrants — America.
As fellow Newsmax Insider Deroy Murdock wrote in March in National Review:
“Based on the Obama administration’s own latest-available statistics by the most basic economic-performance metrics — with one key exception — Black Americans are worse off now than when Obama was sworn in on January 20, 2009.”
Murdock quoted, as have I, liberal media commentator Tavis Smiley who has said that “Sadly — and it pains me to say this — under the last decade, Black folk, in the era of Obama, have lost ground in every major category.”
Blacks apparently share the view that Obama has not done enough for the Black community. An August Gallup poll found that a majority of Blacks, 52 percent, believed that Obama had not gone far enough to help them — up from 20 percent during the 2008 campaign and 32 percent his first year in office.
They are not alone!
He also ignored the growth of ISIS, the genocide in Aleppo, Chinese expansion in the South China Sea, the Cuban people and dissidents by cozying up to the Castros, the people of Israel, and the plight of our veterans.
As he departs, keep in mind that Obama is loved and revered by White and Black liberals — and the mainstream media — not because he is Black, but because he is a “Black liberal.”
They share no such love or affection for Black conservatives who dare to have different viewpoints on solutions to many of the problems confronting Black America. In fact, they have disdain for them — just ask South Carolina Republican Senator Tim Scott or Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.
Obama is a great role model as a loving and caring husband and father. And, his “My Brother’s Keeper” mentoring effort is commendable. However, he, the Black president, could have done so much more from his bully pulpit to bring attention to the importance of family related problems facing much of America’s Black communities.
He could and should have addressed the problem of the over 70 percent Black illegitimacy rate and the consequences of having children out of wedlock; tell youth to stay in and do well in school; respect parents, teachers and those in authority and, urge young Black men to take care of and help raise their children. But that was not his soapbox.
Remember, he said he was not “president of Black America.”
As to a “post racial” America — forget about it!
He used his Attorney General Eric Holder and their race bating allies to play the race card at every opportunity. Question his motives and you were either a racist or, if Black, an Uncle Tom.
When it suited his purposes, he used race to show Blacks that he “felt their pain.”
Comments such as Trayvon Martin could have been his son; or, he knows what it is like to be followed in stores or have women grab their purses when he got on the elevator showed that he empathized with Blacks and solidified any wavering support due to his failure to do little else for that community.
So, looking back on Obama’s eight years, Black and White voters have one thing in common — they were both bamboozled!
Clarence V. McKee is president of McKee Communications, Inc., a government, political, and media relations consulting firm in Florida. He held several positions in the Reagan administration as well as in the Reagan presidential campaigns. He is a former co-owner of WTVT-TV in Tampa and former president of the Florida Association of Broadcasters.