Google+

The Loneliness of the Black Republican

 

The Loneliness of the Black Republican

Pragmatic Politics and the Pursuit of Power

by Leah Wright Riguer

Princeton University Press

Hardcover, $35.00

430 pages, Illustrated

ISBN: 978-0-691-15901-0

Book Review by Kam Williams

 

“This study introduces readers to key figures across a spectrum of black Republican politics and examines their ongoing struggles to effect meaningful change both for African Americans and within the Republican Party over the course of nearly a
51nElyA4QyLhalf century… In no uncertain terms, black Republicans offer a dilemma of sorts; they were far more conservative than their Democratic counterparts but far less conservative than white reactionary Republicans.

They identified with a traditional conservative ideology, to be sure, but they also identified with the various wings of the Republican Party. Above all else, most held fast to a pragmatic ideology that was informed by their day-to-day racial experience rather than by an abstract, dogmatic interpretation of American politics.”

Excerpted from the Introduction (page 12)

 

Eddie Murphy made his Saturday Night Live debut back in November of 1980 in a spoof of the TV show Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom entitled “In Search of the Negro Republican.” The basic idea behind the pointed political skit was that the black Republicans was such a rare, strange and alien curiosity that you’d have to mount an expedition just to find one.

While that silly SNL sketch resorted to exaggeration to generate laughs, a kernel of truth was nevertheless recognizable beneath the stereotypical caricature of the out-of-touch African-American conservative the quest uncovered. Ironically, all these years later, there still aren’t all that many card-carrying black members to be found among the ranks of the GOP, and even far fewer willing to proudly acknowledge their affiliation out in the open.

 

Why is that the case? Leah Wright Riguer explores that nagging question in “The Loneliness of the Black Republican: Pragmatic Politics and the Pursuit of Power.” Professor Riguer, who teaches Public Policy at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government, chronicles the awkward relationship between blacks and the GOP which has persisted for decades, from FDR’s New Deal through LBJ’s Great Society clear through to the Age of Obama.

 

The author’s cites the “Paradox of the Black Republican,” as contributing factors to the “confusion and chaos” and “colossal

Author Wright Rigueur Photo credit: Stephen Kobialka

Author Wright Rigueur
Photo credit: Stephen Kobialka

failures” of a group not only ostracized by their own race, but never fully embraced by white Republicans either. The problem ostensibly emanates from the fact that the present-day GOP “bears little resemblance to the Party of Lincoln” that freed slaves flocked to in droves in the 1860s.

Yet, some black families have stubbornly remained Republicans for generations, despite the party’s ideological shift to the far right. Thus, this insightful opus poses the probing question, what does it mean to be conservative and black?

An informative, revealing and sympathetic send-up of a misunderstood segment of society perhaps unfairly shunned by the black community and simultaneously subordinated by the political party whose favor they so patiently seek to curry.

 

To order a copy of The Loneliness of the Black Republican, visit:  http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0691159017/ref%3dnosim/thslfofire-20    

 

Source:  Baret News Wire

 

Entertainment

For movies opening August 18, 2017

  OPENING THIS WEEK Kam's Kapsules Weekly Previews That Make Choosing a Film Fun by Kam Williams For movies opening August 18, 2017 BIG BUDGET FILMS The Hitman's Bodyguard (R for graphic violence and pervasive profanity) Unlikely-buddies comedy about an ace bodyguard (Ryan Reynolds) who grudgingly helps a notorious assassin (Samuel … [Read More its Good for You...]

Books

Book of Black Heroes

  Book of Black Heroes Political Leaders Past and Present by Gil L. Robertson, IV Foreword by Myrlie Evers-Williams Just Us Books Paperback, $12.95 80 pages ISBN: 978-1-933491-21-9 Book Review by Kam Williams “The first African-American political leaders began to serve following the Civil War...Known as Reconstruction, this period … [Read More its Good For You...]

Art

The Day After the Day Of

  The Day After the Day Of by Paul Ilechko   The sky sheds its tears. This morning is the morning of the day after. The day of mourning, the day after the day of.  I beseech the sky to shed tears in order to wash away the tears on my face.   This is the first day of the time after. This is the beginning of a new time, the … [Read More its Good for You...]

Real Estate

Real Estate: Refinancing Rates on the Rise in 2017

  Real Estate: Refinancing Rates on the Rise in 2017 by Amy Lignor   The term ‘meteoric rise’ usually applies to something fun. Think: A Hollywood actor who has been ‘discovered.’) Unfortunately, when it comes to this article, ‘meteoric rise’ is something that will not bring a smile to one’s face. To put it simply, if you wish to refinance … [Read More its Good for You...]

Lifestyle

The “King” Will Take Center Stage at the 2017 Wildlife Conservation Expo

  The “King” Will Take Center Stage at the 2017 Wildlife Conservation Expo by Amy Lignor   Each and every year the Wildlife Conservation Expo is held to address situations out there that are harming our world and its animal inhabitants. This time around, WCN’s annual Fall Wildlife Conservation Expo in October, will be focusing on … [Read More its Good for You...]

Outdoors

How Bassmaster Pro Edwin Evers Adjusts the Auto Settings on His Sonar

  How Bassmaster Pro Edwin Evers Adjusts the Auto Settings on His Sonar  by Edwin Evers When it comes to electronics, a question I get asked a lot is, “How do you customize your fish finder settings at the beginning of a day on the water?” The short answer is, “I don’t.”   You might think that a guy who makes his living with a … [Read More its Good for You...]

Sports

College Football Arriving Soon!

  College Football Arriving Soon! by Amy Lignor   Ask any college football fan and they will tell you that it seems like an eternity waiting for the season to begin. But, have no fear, the kick-off to the college season is almost here, with Colorado State and Oregon State hitting the field on Saturday, August 26th at 2:30 p.m. ET. On … [Read More its Good for You...]

Business

Book of Black Heroes

  Book of Black Heroes Political Leaders Past and Present by Gil L. Robertson, IV Foreword by Myrlie Evers-Williams Just Us Books Paperback, $12.95 80 pages ISBN: 978-1-933491-21-9 Book Review by Kam Williams “The first African-American political leaders began to serve following the Civil War...Known as Reconstruction, this period … [Read More its Good for You...]

Travel

Going Back in Time on the Ultimate Steamboat Vacation

  Going Back in Time on the Ultimate Steamboat Vacation by Amy Lignor   Many people love taking a cruise. But it is the river cruise on that glorious steamboat that not only offers all the benefits a big ocean liner offers, but also creates a more personalized, intimate vacation experience. It is a unique recipe: being able to witness … [Read More its Good for You...]