Racist Democrats enforce segregation of their own party
By Jeff Emanuel
January 24, 2007
The Politico's headline says it all: "Freshman Rep. Stephen I. Cohen, D-Tenn., is not joining the Congressional Black Caucus after several current and former members made it clear that a white lawmaker was not welcome."
Cohen isn't black. However, the Congressman he replaced - Harold "I like sports and I like girls" Ford - is, and his district, in Memphis, is 60% black, and his staff is majority African-American. That clearly just isn't good enough - even though, as a Democrat, Cohen likely has no intention whatsoever of rocking the CBC's boat; he appears simply to be trying to represent his constituency in the best way that he can.
The caucus does not have an "official" racial prerequisite for membership; however, no white Member has ever been able to join - even if an overwhelming percentage of their constituency is black.
It doesn't look like that's going to change any time soon, either. Rep. William Lacy Clay Sr. (D-Mo) responded to Cohen's attempt to join by authoring and circulating a memo which emphasized how "critical" it was "that the group remain exclusively African- American."
Clay's son, also a Democrat Congressman from Missouri, reinforced that opinion, saying: "It's an unwritten rule. It's understood. It's clear."
"Half my Democratic constituents were African-American. I felt we had interests in common as far as helping people in poverty," said Rep. Pete Stark (D-CA), who attempted to join the caucus in 1975. "They had a vote, and I lost. They said the issue was that I was white, and they felt it was important that the group be limited to African-Americans."
"I think they're real happy I'm not going to join," said Cohen, after finally backing out of his bid to do so. "It's their caucus and they do things their way. You don't force your way in. You need to be invited."
And the Congressional Black Caucus has made it very clear who is not invited, either now or ever: White people.
Way to work toward that "colorblind society," folks.
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