Wednesday, January 08, 2003

The highest ranking African-American in the California Republican Party on Tuesday condemned the racism he has endured working for the GOP.
"Black Republicans are expected to provide window dressing and cover to prove that this is not a racist party, yet our own leadership continues to act otherwise," party Secretary Shannon Reeves wrote in an e-mail to party board members.
He said "the time has come" for Republican leaders to understand what he has had to endure.
"When I travel to speak at Republican conferences and events around the country, wandering through hotels, convention centers and social clubs, as I approach the rooms where I'm to speak, I am often told by Republicans that I must be in the wrong place," he wrote.
"As a Bush delegate at the 2000 convention in Philadelphia, I proudly wore my delegate's badge and (Republican National Committee) lapel pin as I worked the convention. Regardless of the fact that I was obviously a delegate prominently displaying my credentials, no less than six times did white delegates dismissively tell me (to) fetch them a taxi or carry their luggage."
I remember reading an article a couple of years back about the role of blacks in the GOP. The party has several sub-committees set up to deal with various policy issues. This article quoted several black Republicans as saying that, when it came time to dole out assignments to these committees, they were invariably placed on those committees that had some black aspect to them (poverty, racism, low-income housing, crime, etc., etc.) But they were rarely placed on plum comittees dealing with foreign policy that also did not have any obvious black aspect to them (e.g., relations with African nations). The people quoted said that they didn't feel this was being done out of any kind of outright racism but was more the result of an subconscious assumption that black members of the party would be more interested in dealing with black issues. I wonder if this is still the case.


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