Civil rights leaders totally lost their minds over the Voting Rights Act case, though the court upheld the status quo. The court simply said that Congress needed to redo the formula that determines which states should remain under the supervision of the Department of Justice.
Let me explain it this way. In the 1960s and 70s, polyester suits were in vogue. What the court said was, it’s the 21st century, so we think you might need to change the fabric used in your suits. You can still have whatever suit you want, you simply need to update the material you are using to one that is more appropriate to the times. Again, I find this very reasonable.
So, to civil rights icons like John Lewis and Julian Bond, c-h-i-l-l o-u-t! If you listen to them and the liberal media, you would have thought the Supreme Court put Blacks back in chains.
We must approach these decisions strategically, not emotionally. In a weird kind of way, I am very optimistic that Republicans will step up and play a constructive role in facilitating a thoughtful discussion of these two important court decisions.
The key players on these two issues will be, House Majority Whip White Eric Cantor and Congressman Jim Sensenbrenner.
Cantor represents the 10th district of Virginia in the U.S. House of Representatives. He instinctively gets and understands the issue of race better than most Republicans. He has quite an interesting story to tell in this regard and I hope one day soon he will allow me to share it with the public.
Sensenbrenner represents Wisconsin’s 5th congressional district and is former chairman of the House’s Judiciary Committee. He has been a stalwart on issues revolving around civil rights, specifically the reauthorization of the Voting Rights Act in 2006.
If Speaker John Boehner taps Cantor and Sensenbrenner to play key roles in helping the Republican Party understand some of these issues involving race, I am fairly confident that they will lead the party down a constructive path that will show the Black community that Republicans understand these two issues that are of great interest to the Black community. There is a lot of work to be done, but Cantor and Sensenbrenner’s unique understanding on these issues can be a great asset if the party’s leaders take advantage of it.
(Raynard Jackson is president & CEO of Raynard Jackson & Associates, LLC., a Washington, D.C.-based public relations/government affairs firm. He can be reached through his Web site, http://www.raynardjackson.com. You can also follow him on Twitter at raynard1223.)
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