Thursday, May 9, 2013

"Before jumping on any bandwagons, know who is driving the rig and which direction it's headed "

 Left in Alabama commenter maebabs made this comment in reference to Ron Sparks (D) and Artur Davis(DINO) differing positions on charter schools during the 2010 Alabama Democratic gubernatorial primary.  This comment runs parallel to my previous post regarding the New Democratic Majority.  The more I read, the more I'm convinced  the Artur Davis wing is holding the reins, and it's all about driving  Joe Reed off a cliff.
We white Democrats who grub for white votes one at a time at feed stores, convenience stores, wherever the opportunity arises, sometimes get a response which is "the (N) own the Democratic Party." It's always the "N" word and it's always summed up just that way. Now, recall a few years ago when a black Bham area legislator retired and a white woman upset black candidates and won the Democratic nomination. Joe Reed screamed it was "a black" seat, which only helped reinforce white antipathy to black democrats. Reed helped finance a challenge, and demanded futilely to be on the State Dem party committee deciding the challenge. He lost the battle, but he got even by engineering the removal of the chair of the committee from her state party post, who, ironically, is a white woman with a long history of working for black equality. That's just a little of Joe Reed. Go back to his relationship with George Wallace before he didn't have a relationship with George Wallace. Of course artur knew that Reed is lining his organization up for sparks. He could have gone in and begged for no endorsement in the primary. I like what he did. Alabama politics is better for it.
I refuse to believe the MAJORITY of Alabama DEMOCRATS are anti AEA(Alabama Education Association).
I have a child in the public school system, and it appears to me that the AEA's main purpose is protecting tenured teachers, rather than the best teachers or all students. While I haven't done in-depth research into charter schools or vouchers, the fear-mongering advertisements I heard on the radio during the primaries (funded by the AEA) infuriated me. 
I realize the AEA was created when the two pre-existing teachers' unions headed by Hubbert and Reed merged, and from what I understand they did much to make integration relatively smooth. However, that was decades ago.
Currently, the state party is dominated by the AEA. My county chairperson is an employee of the AEA. The meeting place for the county party is in the AEA headquarters building. It's rather difficult to be a part of the Democratic party in this state without supporting the AEA -- so tell me why I should.
I refuse to believe the MAJORITY of Alabama DEMOCRATS are willing to pander to the right at the expense of the most loyal democratic voting block for personal, political gain.
Congressman Davis has often admitted in his interviews his admiration for Rev. Jackson.  It is time to move past race and engage in critical, thoughtful dialogue that moves Alabama forward.  Honoring the leaders that have sacrificed and paved the way for all Americans, we need to be able to think about practical solution and ways to implement them.  More so, we need to find and support leaders that will go against the grain to push us forward.  Artur Davis is that candidate that I truly believe is able to deliver on what Alabama needs. This is also relevant to the health care reform where he obviously wants MORE for us.  This health care reform must work for Alabama and the small businesses.  Kudos to Congressman Davis for taking a stand!!!!
It's De Joe-Vu all over again.
 In reality, Davis hasn't rejected the black vote, he's rejected the black gatekeepers and gone directly to the people.  It's worth noting that Hillary Clinton also came and spoke directly to the ADC in late 2007; Barack Obama did not.  Obama went on to win the Alabama primary -- and the general election.
I HOPE the MAJORITY of Alabama DEMOCRATS don't feel this way about the traditional democratic base.
The endorsement of these groups is not about who has the best position on health care, or bingo or ethics reform, or unemployment, or jobs -- New South endorsed Earl Hilliard, Jr. over Davis in both 2000 and 2002 and they've never given him more than token support in the years since.  These endorsements are about kow-towing to the power brokers and Artur Davis has never been willing to do that.  Bottom line, history tells us Joe Reed would move heaven and earth to keep ADC from endorsing Artur Davis.  Ditto Hank Sanders and New South Coalition.  It's the status quo vs. a new way of doing business in Alabama, and the folks who wield power with the current system aren't going to give it up quietly.
Ron Sparks will happily kow-tow and they'll endorse him.  No surprise there.
 All that glitters is not gold. 
 There is the perception that the Democratic Party is the party of black folks and the Republican Party is the party of white folks.  What can we do in Alabama to address openly and honestly the issues of race that divides the Democratic Party but has no role in the Republican Party?
Well we can start by stop being afraid to talk openly and honestly about race.
We can't expect voters in Alabama to get over the race issue when the Democratic Party in Alabama can't get over the race issue.  ...  Everybody wants to pretend like it doesn't exist.  But it does.  I got phone calls that would say things like, "did you send black canvassers to white doors?"  As a party we need to decide that we're going to get over race before we can expect voters to do that.
Secondly, we must purge the party of infiltrators.  You are either with the Alabama Democratic Party and it's agenda, or, you are against the Alabama Democratic Party and it's agenda. There is no in between. The Democratic Party can't just say we are ALL on the same rig and the driver is driving the rig  in the same direction when it's convenient (aka election time).

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