Across the years we as a people were denied the right to participate in the political process, but there came a period of time that we stood up and challenged the racist process.

Blacks sued, marched, and eventually were able to register to vote and even elect Black men and women to public office. There were some persons who truly believed that the election of a Black person to the position of President of the United States was the epitome. It was proof that Blacks had achieved all that we needed to in politics.

However, we are mistaken—it was just the beginning. Government consists of more than just the President. For example, let’s focus on our own front yards and analyze the terrible ineptness of the lack of sophistication of Blacks’ voting patterns across Allegheny County. Allow me to ask you a question: Have you ever voted for a Black candidate in a primary or general election that was not endorsed by the Democratic Party?

There was a time that there were two viable political parties, Democrats and Republicans, but something happened to the Republican Party. Black persons have run for Congress, state Senator, Lt. Governor, Mayor, etc…Have you ever voted for any of them? Too frequently, when a Black candidate runs for a position outside of committee person, other Blacks usually state that they can’t win. My response generally is, they definitely can’t win if they don’t run for office.

In the most recent local election, I want to extend a hearty congratulations to three Black candidates: Attorney Rosemary Crawford, who ran for Allegheny County Court of Common Pleas Judge; Rev. John C. Welch, who ran for the city’s Mayor; and a newcomer, whom great things are expected, James “Fife” Myers Jr., for Pittsburgh school board. The Black communities must awaken across Allegheny County and vote in record numbers, because every election and every vote is important. Across the county in this last primary, the voter turnout should be considered illegal and border on criminality—it was only 17.3 percent.

Meanwhile, in the country of Iran, their election had a 76.5 percent voter turnout.

Remember, Blacks voting smart has ALWAYS MATTERED.

(Louis “Hop” Kendrick is a contributor to the New Pittsburgh Courier.)


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