Michael Taube points out in the Washington Times that the GOP’s gains in the midterm elections have important racial implications. With the election of Mia Love to the House from Utah and Tim Scott to the Senate from S.C., perhaps Democrats tiresome and shameful propaganda about the GOP and race has finally turned a corner. And there is more heartening news with the election of Bruce Rauner (Jewish) as governor of Illinois and 18-year-old Saira Blair to W.V’s Hose of Delegates. Their midterm election wins, along with those of Mr. Scott and Ms. Love, are helping to correct perceptions about race, religion, gender, and the myth of the angry white male often attributed to the GOP. Read more here about what popular singer Pharrell Williams labeled on Oprah Winfrey as “the New Black.”
It’s far too early to know whether Mrs. Love’s and Mr. Scott’s victories are part of a growing trend. Yet, this is an early sign that something is starting to occur in the black community.
In fact, I’d argue that a tiny glimmer occurred back in April. It happened during popular singer Pharrell Williams’s interview with Oprah Winfrey, when he labeled himself as being part of something called “the New Black.”
According to Mr. Williams, “The New Black doesn’t blame other races for our issues.” Rather, this new movement “dreams and realizes that it’s not pigmentation: It’s a mentality, and it’s either going to work for you, or it’s going to work against you. And you’ve got to pick the side you’re going to be on.”
He’s not the only person to have mentioned this.
As Jonathan Kim wrote in an Oct. 24 piece for The Huffington Post, “influential black people like Pharrell, Raven Symone, and Donald Glover (in what’s called the “New Black” movement) have declared that racism against blacks is no longer relevant.” While the film critic isn’t sympathetic, he understood “how a lot of young people may honestly feel that racism is a relic of the past that America just needs to get over, especially since so many of their pop culture heroes, and even the nation’s first family, are black.”
What does all this mean? Mrs. Love and Mr. Scott, along with other newly minted Republicans, such as Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner, who is Jewish, and 18-year-old Saira Blair, elected to West Virginia’s House of Delegates, are helping adjust and correct perceptions about race, religion and gender. It’s difficult to keep labeling the GOP as a group of angry whitemales when the political tent is clearly getting bigger.
The Republicans’ political future looks very bright with these new caucus faces. The times they are a-changin’, indeed.
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