This is Your Opportunity to Use Your Influence to Demand Change and Make a Difference
The Democrats now have control of the House, the Senate and the presidency.
With that being said, there are really no excuses that could be given as to what can and what should be done for the most loyal and dedicated constituency group of Democratic supporters in this country – Black people.
After all the votes were cast for the 2020 presidential election, according to exit polls conducted by Edison Research for the National Election Pool and reported by the New York Times, 90 percent of Black women and 79% of Black men overwhelmingly voted for Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden and his running mate for vice president, Kamala Harris.
On top of that, Black voter turnout helped flip Georgia blue, with Biden winning the state and gaining the Electoral College votes to become president, and two Senate seats being won by Democratic candidates in a runoff election that determined the control of the Senate.
Again, Black voters made the difference.
Throughout his campaign for president, Biden promised that he would focus on making executive changes and pushing for legislation that would address racial injustice and many of the racial inequities that have plagued the Black community for decades.
Since taking the helm as president on January 20th, President Biden has issued a number of executive orders that have reversed many of his predecessor’s decisions or that have been top priority items for select constituency groups. From his initial executive orders, none of the decisions he made had seemingly been directed to address top priorities of the Black community.
Hope that the Biden administration would begin focusing on addressing many of the disparities that plague the collective Black community across America began to take shape on last Friday, January 22nd, when President Biden signed two executive orders – one being to expand food assistance and deliver another stimulus checks to low-income Americans and the other raising the minimum wage for federal employees to $15/hour.
This comes in addition to President Biden’s efforts to get a $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill passed that would send another $1,400 in stimulus checks to American citizens who qualify, along with extending unemployment benefits, providing additional nutrition assistance and providing mortgage and rental assistance to homeowners and renters who are in need.
This past Tuesday, January 26th, President Biden signed two other executive orders, to address the historic and systemic racism that Blacks have overwhelmingly been the victims of in the areas of housing and criminal justice.
In a much sought after demand from many Black activists and Black civil rights groups, President Biden signed an executive order directing the Department of Justice (DOJ) to end the use of private prisons. Going further, he directed the federal government to not renew any existing contracts with private prisons, which have been a billion-dollar industry, paid for by taxpayer dollars. Due to for-profit nature of these businesses, private prisons have not only contributed to mass incarceration, but through investigations, the facilities have been found to be less safe and secure and have been plagued with dehumanizing and slave-like labor conditions for inmates.
Another executive order that President Biden signed on January 26th, ordered the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to review how decisions made by the Trump administration regarding housing may require the Biden administration to implement new and improved requirements set by the Fair Housing Act.
This is seemingly a great start, but as in all executive orders, an executive order is not legislation, which means an executive order can be reversed whenever a new president takes over, especially if he or she has a different agenda or view of the issues.
The 2020 presidential election and the outcomes in Georgia and other areas across the country where Black people made the difference, shows that in order to ensure Black people have a seat at the table and are able to have needs addressed, Black people must come together in unity to demand key agenda items are not ignored, swept under the rug or kicked down the road.
This is an opportunity for Black people to bring together many of its like-minded intellectuals, thought leaders, ministers, entertainers, athletes, financial experts, investors, farmers, scientists, business people, artists, aspiring elected officials, current politicians, public policy experts, judges, legal scholars, healthcare professionals, insurance experts, law enforcement officials, current and former military veterans, educators, street soldiers and all other industry professionals from different walks of life, in order to develop well-thought out strategies and real solutions to deal with the issues plaguing the Black community today, and to develop a plan to prevent a future recurrence of those issues once they are dealt with and resolved.
This is an opportunity for Black people to break its historical cultural dependency of relying on other races of people to solve its collective problems, by strategically collaborating with like-minded and progressive members of the Black community who understand this moment as the perfect time to demand realistic and measurable changes and have the power to make it happen – while currently having a Democratic president in office and the Democrats having control of the House and the Senate. .
This is an opportunity for Black people to use their influence and their Black dollar as both an asset and a weapon to bring about growth and change by withholding their powerful Black dollar from those who disenfranchise them, and redirecting those dollars to Black businesses or towards businesses who support the Black community – while currently having a Democratic president in office and the Democrats having control of the House and the Senate.
This is an opportunity for Black people to deal with a Black unemployment rate that is higher than any other cultural group in America – while currently having a Democratic president in office and the Democrats having control of the House and the Senate.
This is an opportunity for Black people to deal with a generational wealth gap that has tripled between Blacks and Whites in America – while currently having a Democratic president in office and the Democrats having control of the House and the Senate.
This is an opportunity for Black people to take a stand against the racial injustice against Black people, especially as it relates to the criminal justice system and the courts – while having a Democratic president in office and the Democrats having control of the House and the Senate.
This is an opportunity for Black people to deal with the many health disparities, such as COVID-19 and other issues that overwhelmingly impact the Black community, along with the lack of nutrition and the food deserts that exist in may Black communities that keep Blacks at or near the top of all the major health disparity issues in this country – while having a Democratic president in office and the Democrats having control of the House and the Senate.
This is an opportunity for Black people to demand educational equity to improve the education Black youth receive, while ensuring all of the necessary resources be equitably given to all schools regardless of where they are located, so Black families won’t have to chase after a quality education or be chosen by a lottery system that cherry picks students – while having a Democratic president in office and the Democrats having control of the House and the Senate.
Lastly, this is an opportunity for Black people to properly educate themselves on politics, public policy and civics lessons, so that no member of the Black community is unclear or unsure of what is happening or what needs to happen as it relates to issues concerning them – while having a Democratic president in office and the Democrats having control of the House and the Senate.
Many in the Black community look at the recent election results as progress and a chance for change, but it should also be looked at as an opportunity to demand measurable change and to seriously analyze where the Black community collectively stand as a group.
The Biden/Harris administration, along with the House and Senate, are on the clock; but so is the Black community. Time will tell whether all parties involved will get done for the Black community, everything that needs to get done while they have the chance.