- Black conservatism
Black conservatism is an international political and social movement rooted in communities of African descent that aligns largely with the conservative movement. It emphasizes
patriotism, independence and self-help, free enterprise, and strong cultural conservatism within the context of black Church.
One of the main characteristics of black conservatism is its emphasis on personal choice and responsibilities. In the tradition of African American politics and intellectual life, black conservatives tend to side with
Booker T. Washingtonas contrasted with W.E.B. DuBois. For many black conservatives, the key mission is to bring repair and success to the Black community by applying the following fundamental principles:
*The pursuit of educational and professional excellence as a means of advancement within the society;
*Policies that promote safety and security in the community beyond the typical casting of a criminal as a "victim" of societal racism;
*Local economic development through free enterprise rather than looking to the federal government for assistance;
*Empowerment of the individual via self-improvement (virtue), conscience, and supernatural grace. [For an overview of these themes, see Stan Faryna, Brad Stetson, and Joseph G. Conti, Eds., "Black and Right: The Bold New Voice of Black Conservatives in America", (Westport, CT: Praeger, 1997)] .
Black conservative may find common ground with Black Nationalists through their common belief in black empowerment and the theory that black people have been duped by the
On the other hand, some of the policies advocated by Black conservatives are in conflict with some of the key points in the common social, economic, and political positions that a high percentage of African-Americans favor. For example, black conservatives typically oppose affirmative action which is supported by the vast majority of African American communities. They tend to argue that efforts to obtain reparations for slavery are either misguided or counter-productive. Moreover, black conservatives - especially black Republicans - are often accused of being
Uncle Toms. "Ebony" in their May 2001 "100+ Most Influential Black Americans" issue, did not include a number of influential African Americans such as Thomas Sowell, Shelby Steele, Armstrong Williams, Walter Williams and, most notably, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas. The Economist, a British libertarian-leaning magazine, described the exclusion of Thomas from the list as spiteful. [http://www.economist.com/opinion/displaystory.cfm?story_id=9905608] Black Republican favour integration of African Americans into mainstream America and, consequently, are openly hostile to notions of Black nationalism. Black republican are more inclined to support economic policies promoting Republican agenda such as globalization, free-tradeand tax cuts, which much black communities might seen it as irrelevant.
Black conservatives and Black Republicans
The term "Black Republican" was coined by Democrats in 1854 to describe the newly-formed Republican Party. Though the majority of Republicans at the time were actually white, the Republican Party was founded by abolitionists generally supported racial equality. Southern Democrats used the term as one of derision, believing that a Lincoln victory in 1860 would lead to widespread slave revolts. The use of the term continued after the Civil War to reflect most Southerners' opinions of the
Radical Republicansduring Reconstruction. [ [http://www.civilwarhome.com/republicans.htm The Republicans And The Civil War ] ] Over the next century, the term "Black Republican" would come to refer specifically to blacks affiliated with or voting for the Republican Party and is now a subset of the broader movement of black conservatism.
According to a 2004 study 13.7% of blacks identified as "Conservative" or "Extremely Conservative" [ [http://sda.berkeley.edu:8080/quicktables/quicksetoptions.do;jsessionid=48747F5A3D62CEF9C818628F101394D8?reportKey=gss04%3A0 Quick Tables ] ] with another 14.4 identifying as slightly conservative. However the same study indicated less than ten percent identified as Republican or Republican leaning in any fashion. Likewise, a recent
Pew Research Centersurvey showed that 19% of blacks identify as Religious Right. [ [http://pewforum.org/docs/index.php?DocID=153#2 Pew Forum: Many Americans Uneasy with Mix of Religion and Politics ] ] In 2004 the Pew Research Center indicated only 7% of blacks identify as Republican. [ [http://people-press.org/reports/display.php3?PageID=750 Part 1: Party Affiliation: The 2004 Political Landscape ] ] Hence a certain percentage of noted Black conservatives (such as Harold Ford Jr.) are likely connected to the Democrats for Life of Americamovement or economic liberalism.
From Reconstruction up until the
New Dealthe black population tended to vote Republican as the Republican Party, particularly in the Southern United States, was seen as more racially liberal than the Democratic Party, primarily because of the role of the southern wing of the Democratic Party as the party of segregation and the Republican Party's roots in the abolitionistmovement (See Dixiecrats for more on this). Blacks started to shift in significant numbers to the Democrats with the election of Franklin Roosevelt, [ [http://millercenter.org/academic/americanpresident/fdroosevelt/essays/biography/8 American President: Franklin Delano Roosevelt: The American Franchine] ] whose New Dealparticularly benefited economically disadvantaged minority communities and helped forge the New Deal coalitionwhich dominated American politics for the next 30 years, and continued with the election of John F. Kennedy, an Irish-CatholicDemocrat who pioneered racial equality legislation while in office, resulting in a flight of conservative Democrats in the South to the Republican Party.Fact|date=June 2008
Another case study of differences between Black conservatives and Black Republicans is an emphasis on personal empowerment versus theological perspectives. Black Republicans like
Colin Powellhold to the social ideas articulated by the early Radical Republicans like Frederick Douglass while at the same time supporting the self-empowerment message of Booker T. Washington. Many social conservatives who are black and Republican hold to a biblically based empowerment although they also appreciate Booker's emphasis on personal accomplishment. Conservatives like the Texas minister T. D. Jakesare evangelical African Americans who support policies more in common but not totally in line with many white Evangelicals.
Black Conservatism Worldwide
Black Conservatism in the United Kingdom
While there was an early link in the eighteenth century between Black Britions, mainly former slaves, and the
abolitionistconservatives who sucsessfully sought the end of the slave trade in 1807many Black Britons have not traditionally supported conservative policies. This in some part emerged from the Conservative hostillity to immigration from the Commonwealth during the 1950s and 1960s, culminating in the infamous speech by a leading Conservative Enoch Powell, in which he predicted mass immigration would lead to "a river of blood".
Despite this there has long been a small number of conservative blacks. In recent years the Conservatives have attempted to undo the long-standing conservative prejudices, by attacking racism and trying to cultivate more of a following amongst the black community.
Increasingly more black and ethnic minority figures are being appointed and elected to positions within the Conservative Party. Notable black Conservatives in the
United Kingdominclude Lord Taylor of Warwick, [ [http://www.lordtaylor.org/ Lord Taylor of Warwick ] ] Adam Afriyie MP, [ [http://www.adamafriyie.org/ Adam Afriyie for Windsor ] ] Wilfred Emmanuel-Jones[ [http://www.conservatives.com/tile.do?def=people.person.page&personID=130378 Wilfred Emmanuel-Jones - Profile - Conservative Party ] ] and James Cleverly, [ [http://jamescleverly.blogspot.com/ James Cleverly ] ] a member of the London Assembly. Boxer Frank Brunohas also been a vocal supporter of the Conservative Party.
Black Conservatism in the Carribean
Black conservatives and black churches
The African American church has traditionally been an important element to social and political movements in the community. In general these have been identified by figures of the Left or liberalism, like
Jesse Jackson, but this is not consistently true. On issues concerning homosexualityBlack Protestants are more socially conservative than other groups exempting White Evangelicals. [http://people-press.org/reports/display.php3?PageID=757] Their view on the issue of homosexual teachers changed less than any other segment based on religion or race.
*1954 - President Dwight Eisenhower appoints
J. Ernest Wilkinsas Assistant Secretary of Labor.
Arthur A. Fletcheris appointed Assistant Secretary of Labor; he will be a candidate for Chairman of the Republican National Committee in '76 and appointed Chairman of the US Commission on Civil Rights in '90.
*1975 - President Gerald Ford appoints
William T. ColemanSecretary of Transportation. James B. Parsonsis named Chief Judge of the US District Court in Chicago, the first African-American to hold such a position.
*1980 - NAACP President
Benjamin Hooksis invited to address the Republican National Convention
*1981 - President Ronald Reagan appoints
Clarence Pendleton, Jr.as Chairman of the US Civil Rights Commission
*1982 - President Reagan appoints
Clarence Thomasas Chairman of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
*1989 - President George H.W. Bush appoints
Louis Wade Sullivanas Secretary of Health and Human Services, General Colin L. Powellas Chair of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, and Condoleezza Riceas Director of the National Security Council.
Gary Franksis elected to US Congress (CT)
*1991 - President Bush appoints Clarence Thomas to U.S. Supreme Court
*1998 - U.S. House of Representatives elects
J. C. Watts(R-OK) to be Chairman of the House Republican Conference.
*2001 - President George W. Bush appoints General Colin L. Powell as the Secretary of State;
Roderick R. Paigeas the Secretary of Education; Condoleezza Rice as Advisor of the National Security Council and, subsequently, Secretary of State; Alphonso Jacksonas the Deputy Secretary to Housing and Urban Development; Claude Allenas the Deputy Secretary of Health and Human Services; Leo S. Mackay, Jr.as the Deputy Secretary of Veterans Affairs; Larry D. Thompsonas the Deputy Attorney General; and Stephen A. Perryas Administrator of General Services Administration
Notable black conservatives in the United States
United States politicians
Ken Blackwell, former Secretary of State of Ohio, former Ohio gubernatorial candidate
*Keith Butler, minister, former Detroit councilman, former candidate for U.S. Senate from Michigan
Alveda King, niece of Dr. Martin Luther King, senior fellow at the Alexis de Tocqueville Institution
Steven Mullins,Commissioner of Planning and Zoning, West Haven, Connecticut. Republican nominee for State Comptroller in 2002.
Rod Paige, former Secretary of Education
Colin Powell, former United States Secretary of State
*Michael Powell, former FCC chairman
Condoleezza Rice, United States Secretary of State, former National Security Advisor
Winsome Sears, former member of Virginia House of Delegates, former candidate for U.S. House
Michael S. Steele, former Lieutenant Governor of Maryland, former candidate for U.S. Senate from Maryland
Thomas Stith, town councilman of Durham, NC, former candidate for Lt. Gov. of NC
J.C. Watts, former U.S. Representative from Oklahoma
Michael L. Williams, chairman of the Texas Railroad Commission
United States judges
Wallace Jefferson, chief justice of the Texas Supreme Court
Janice Rogers Brown, U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit
Clarence Thomas, associate justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, former Equal Employment Opportunity Commission chairman
Talk show hosts
Larry Elder, author of "10 Things You Can't Say in America", radio show host
Alan Keyes, radio host, U.N. Ambassador, presidential candidate, author
Angela McGlowan, Republican political analyst for Fox News Network
Jesse Lee Peterson, president of The Brotherhood Organization, television and radio host
Armstrong Williams, author of "Beyond Blame", TV host of "On Point"
Herman Cain, newspaper columnist, businessman, politician, and radio talk-show host from Georgia
Erik Rush, columnist, author
La Shawn Barber, columnist, blogger
*Loo Oates, social commentator, columnist, blogger
Stephen L. Carter, "Christianity Today" columnist, author of " The Culture of Disbelief"
Ken Hamblin, Denver Post columnist
Deroy Murdock, "National Review" columnist
Star Parker, president of the Coalition on Urban Renewal and Education, columnist, author
Thomas Sowell, Hoover Institutefellow, economist, author of "Basic Economics"
Walter E. Williams, economist, columnist, author of "More Liberty Means Less Government"
Sophia A. Nelson, columnist, blogger, commentator, GOP political strategist, Chairman of PoliticalIntersection.com and politicalintersection.blogspot.com
Athletes and entertainers
Lionel Hampton, musician and bandleaderFact|date=September 2008
Yaphet Kotto, actorFact|date=September 2008
Karl Malone, basketball player, two-time Olympic gold medalistFact|date=September 2008
Joseph C. Phillips, actor, commentatorFact|date=September 2008
Lynn Swann, football player, Pennsylvania gubernatorial candidateFact|date=September 2008
Jimmie Walker, actor, comedianFact|date=September 2008
Akindele Akinyemi,CEO of One Network and conservative educatorFact|date=September 2008
Herman Cain, President of Godfather's PizzaFact|date=September 2008
Ward Connerly, University of Californiaregent, activist and businessmanFact|date=September 2008
Ezola Foster, president of Americans for Family Values, author of "What's Right For All Americans"Fact|date=September 2008
Samuel B. Fuller, 20th century entrepreneurFact|date=September 2008
*Robert A. George, journalist, pundit and bloggerFact|date=September 2008
Niger Innis, director of Congress of Racial Equality(CORE)Fact|date=September 2008
Roy Innis, Hudson Institutefellow, chairman of the Congress of Racial EqualityFact|date=September 2008
T.D Jakes, televangelistFact|date=September 2008
*Don King, boxing promoter [http://cbs3.com/slideshows/Conservative.Celebrities.republican.20.828253.html?rid=27]
*Michael King, National Advisory Board Member of Project 21, former radio talk show hostFact|date=September 2008
John McWhorter, author of "Losing the Race" and Senior Fellow at the Manhattan InstituteFact|date=September 2008
James Meredith, former civil rights activistFact|date=September 2008
Eric Motley, former State Department official, now vice-president of the Aspen InstituteFact|date=September 2008
Deroy Murdock, Wall Street Journal opinion contributor, Cato Institute ScholarFact|date=September 2008
Gerald A. Reynolds, president of the Center for New Black Leadership, member of Project 21Fact|date=September 2008
Vernon Robinson, Air Force intelligence officer, business professorFact|date=September 2008
George Schuyler, journalist, novelistFact|date=September 2008
Shelby Steele, Hoover Institute fellow, author of "The Content of Our Character"Fact|date=September 2008
Stanley Crouch, author of "In Defence of Taboos"Fact|date=September 2008
Lee Walker, president of the New Coalition for Economic and Social Change, Heartland Institute FellowFact|date=September 2008
Michelle Bernard, President and CEO of the Independent Women's Forum[ [http://www.iwf.org/experts/ex_bernard.asp Independent Women's Forum] ] and prominent media figure [ [http://www.kmps.com/play_window.php?audioType=Episode&audioId=1290170 KPMS.com] ] [ [http://www.wikio.com/news/Michelle+Bernard Wikio.com] ]
Fictional black conservatives
Black conservative organizations
* [http://www.alliancegop.com/ Alliance of Black Republicans]
* [http://www.aarlc.org/ African American Republican Leadership Council]
* [http://www.jointcenter.org/ Black Conservative Think Tank]
* [http://www.bampac.org/ Black America's PAC]
* [http://www.core-online.org/ Congress of Racial Equality]
* [http://www.acri.org/ American Civil Rights Institute]
* [http://www.newcoalition.org/ New Coalition for Economic and Social Change]
List of African American Republicans
* [http://www.villagevoice.com/news/0033,noel,17337,1.html The Uncle Tom Dilemma] from
The Village Voice
* [http://www.theconnection.org/shows/2004/06/20040602_a_main.asp The New Black Republicans] from
WBUR, Boston's NPR
* [http://hiphoprepublican.com/2005/11/uncle-tom-negro.html The .......Uncle Tom Negro!] from HipHopRepublican.com
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