Will Republicans Ever Get the Message Right for Minorities?

29 Aug

Here’s an excerpt from a piece by David Brooks from August of 2000.   It is pulled from “Pabulum with a Purpose”, appearing in The Weekly Standard.  It goes to demonstrate that the search by Republicans for the right connection to minority groups has been going on for some time.  These minorities remain oppressed by [largely] Democratic-Party-inspired programs, but still see Democrats as their real benefactors.


 “It started on Monday with a Hispanic girl singing the national anthem, a black Baptist minister preaching by video from the pulpit of his church, an Asian-American woman celebrating the virtues of voluntarism, and a black retired general defending affirmative action. It concluded on Thursday with a California politician delivering a speech in Spanish, a Mexican dancer in a big sombrero crooning Latin tunes that were clichés back in the day of Ricky Ricardo, and the African-American singer Chaka Khan singing a final number as the delegates walked out into the night. This wasn’t a normal political convention. This was reparative therapy for Caucasians. The people in the stands were mostly white, while the people performing were mostly minority, just like at a Utah Jazz basketball game.

“The Philadelphia convention, in other words, was unlike any other in party history. The Democratic view of it is that the Republicans built a Potemkin image of multicultural inclusiveness to mask what is still a white, intolerant party. And it’s true that the convention program did not reflect the party as it really exists. The GOP is not intolerant; still, normal party gatherings don’t look and feel like this. But the more generous interpretation is that the televised show represented the party of George W. Bush’s aspirations. In other words, he’s trying to transform the party to make it fit the happy multi-hued image that we saw up on stage.”


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