A very interesting and timely study was reported on by U.S. News and World Report yesterday. According to a new study from Washington University in St. Louis, many black Americans feel they have become less free in political participation since Obama was elected. In 2009 71% of blacks felt free to voice opinion but that dropped to only 56% in 2011.
The study found that while the election of Obama initially boosted feelings of political empowerment among black Americans, those sentiments significantly faded in the years that followed—especially among conservative and religious blacks.
These two groups make up a large segment of the black population, with 56 percent of blacks identifying as “born again,” and 39 percent of blacks as “somewhat conservative,” according to the study.
WAIT! WHAT?! So blacks aren’t some monolithic block? Nope. Democrats think that by just stepping into a few “black churches” they can relate. As it turns out, blacks really aren’t as dumb as the Democrats think they are.
By 2011, the percentage of blacks who felt as free to speak their mind had dropped to 56 percent, back to pre-Obama levels. (White Americans also reported feeling less free to speak one’s mind under Obama, but the decline was far less than among blacks).
In part, says Gibson, this can be attributed to “ideological polarization.” That split may have begun when Obama dismissed Pennsylvania voters in 2008 who “cling to guns or religion.” But Gibson says many conservative and religions blacks likely believed when Obama was first elected that he would protect their interests as president. “Race produces a level of trust and confidence that one is on your side,” he says.
Over time, that confidence eroded. Gibson cites the contraception debate between the White House and some religious leaders that erupted last year. Black Americans, he notes, are traditionally conservative on social issues.
So the “war on women” meme may actually be turning blacks away from Democrats. The Democrats have done their best through the welfare system to destroy the black family and their traditional values but it seems that blacks want their values back.
Another schism may have centered on gay marriage. The Democratic-leaning Coalition of African-American Pastors, for example, recently said they felt “marginalized” and “ignored” by Obama’s seemingly sudden support for same-sex marriage.
Religious fundamentalists and conservative blacks, Gibson says, “have seen their efforts to participate in public life [under Obama] being thwarted over and over and over again.”
So blacks are once again hardest hit by the foul rhetoric and policies of Democrats. Of course these are the marginalized blacks. The ones Democrats call “Uncle Toms” and “house slaves”. Just look at the vitriol and hate spewed recently when Stacy Dash made her opinions known.
I don’t think this will mean a sudden turn from the almost automatic support Democrats enjoy at the ballot box, but I do think this is something we can use as a relatable issue and make inroads into freeing those minds that feel caged.