Sunday, December 04, 2005

What Use Are Black Mayors?

Pretty outrageous title, but got my attention.

Note: Nobody is above criticism on this blog - not me, not you, not black people, white people, orange people, Green people.

The article makes a lot of good points. First thoughts in my head when I saw this article were:
1) Ray Nagin - let the black people of his city drown, and then defended Bushco
2) Anthony Williams - 're-built' DC up to an astonishing 37% illiteracy rate

You should read the whole thing, because there's lots of good stuff in there, but I'll offer the closing graph here, for the lazy among us:

Conservatism has been the dominant ideology of American national politics since the election of Jimmy Carter in 1976. For almost thirty years, the White House has been occupied by men who had no commitment to the revitalization of poor urban areas. Poverty is no longer viewed as an issue that can be or even should be addressed. Yet, during this ascendancy of conservatism, little protest activity has emanated from impoverished urban areas. It is as if a black face in the mayor’s office conveyed to city residents a feeling of mayoral concern. If we are ever to begin a movement to attack poverty in America, it will necessitate confronting and challenging black elected officials, particularly black mayors. If we scholars of black politics are ever to contribute to the alleviation of urban poverty, we will have to jettison our long running romance with black elected officials.

Shoot, even Einstein gets criticized...

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