Thursday, January 10, 2008

Tavis Smiley Hatin' on Smooth Barack?

Wassup, Y'all!

I was lunchin' the other day with a few of my crew - 'Tini Mack, Cat Daddy and Lady E - and we were discussin' the outcome of the Iowa Caucasus over some sandwiches. Lady E, who needs her own chair on the George Stephanopoulos Sunday morning show, was hot because she heard Tavis on the Tom Joyner Morning Show tellin' southsiders not to fall in love with Barack Obama and to "...make Senator Obama work for our vote just like he's working for the Independents in New Hampshire". Tavis also went on to say, "...just because you're black doesn't mean you don't have to deliver the bacon, you got to deliver to black people...". Lady E's saltiness came from Tavis' implication that we need to hold Smooth to a higher standard than we would the northside presidential candidates. I've listened to the clip over at Mo'Kelly's (that brother's a little long winded and won't give a brother a holler back but he's a good read) and I have to admit, ol Ty is conflicted on this one...

Granted it's been hard not to get caught up in the fact that Smooth is the first viable southside Presidential candidate. Iowa threw fuel on the fire and New Hampshire threw in a dose of reality. Personally, I think Smooth needs to be held to the same standard as any other candidate we choose to vote for - no more, no less - and I also believe that in order to make a successful bid for the Whitehouse Smooth can't just advocate for the southside nation - he has to advocate for the nation.

Deborah Mathis breaks this down in her article 'If Blacks Folks Really Want Barack Obama to be President, Here's What He and We Must Do'. That's the train I'm on, y'all. I think as a southsider, Smooth is already in tune with the needs of the southside nation (listen to his speeches and tell me he's not) so we'll be on his mind on Day One (the same way the needs of the shorty nation will be on Hillary's mind). I'm pretty sure that won't be the case with any of the northside candidates.

I also understand Tavis' argument of not just buying a bill of goods without looking it over, but come on - does anybody really think that Smooth would deliver less for the southsiders than any northsider candidate out there? So we're left with the argument of 'electablity' - the notion that Smooth will never be elected, so we better just align ourselves now with someone who we think can be so we can catch the crumbs they cast our way when they take office. How well has that plan been working to-date, y'all? Uh huh - thought so. I don't know about y'all but Ol Ty's on the 'Yes, We Can' train. It may hit a wall, get blown up or run out of track, but I'm on it because, even if any or all of that happens, there will at least be more track laid for the next southside candidate and eventually, one of their trains is gonna get to the station intact and on time.



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