Letters to the Editor

Being a black conservative is profitable | Federal Way letters

At least one Federal Way resident contends that it is hard being a black conservative. Actually, it is very lucrative for the small number of profiteers who choose that position while it is deleterious to their race.

There was a time when many blacks voted Republican. In fact, when I arrived in Federal Way in 1975, I was a “Rockefeller Republican” who worked for and voted for a number of Republicans. Dan Evans, Slade Gorton, Ralph Munro and Sam Reed remain among my favorite Washington state public servants.

But at the national level something very ominous happened in 1964-65. President Lyndon Johnson passed the Civil Rights and Voting Rights Acts and said that he had harmed his Democratic Party for at least two decades. The legislation was passed by Northern Republicans (there were virtually no Republicans in the South at the time) and Northern Democrats.

Seeing an opening to gain the South, Nixon and the GOP quickly put their “Southern strategy” into place. After securing his party’s nomination for the presidency, Ronald Reagan made his first campaign stop in Philadelphia, Miss., where civil rights volunteers Cheney, Goodman and Schwerner had been brutally lynched and stated “I believe in states’ rights.” (wink, wink). Once in office, Reagan spoke of Cadillac-driving welfare queens and his followers knew who and what he meant.

Trent Lott, Richard Shelby and a host of Southerners soon fled to the GOP and the South has been a racist stronghold for the GOP ever since.

Since the GOP consistently votes against minorities and the middle class, only a handful of blacks belong to the party. When Republican commentator Ann Coulter recently said “Our blacks are so much better than their blacks,” she must have been referring to Alan Keyes, Clarence Thomas, Herman Cain,  J.C. Watts, Allen West, Ken Blackwell, and …….? In the Democratic Party, the aforementioned would be lost in the shuffle of a vast pool of minority talent. Within the GOP, they have been rewarded handsomely.

In closing I ask, what piece of legislation have conservatives passed that benefits the middle class? Name one if you can.

Jim Grayson, Federal Way



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