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Afrocity Speaks: All in the Same Boat August 21, 2009

Etching of a slave ship

Drawing of a 1860 slave ship taken from a a daguerreotype and published in Harper's Weekly (June 1860)

Like many of you, I  have been brimming over with many thoughts on the current political situation during the last several months. With an upcoming speaking engagement at a Republican event, I felt the need to give a video background of my beginnings as a conservative and also to  speak out against the phony claims of racism we have witnessed since oh say 2008.

Mainly, my taped inner dialogue surrounds one central question:

Should my being African American and a woman enjoy a privileged position in my voting decisions?

Slave ship interior

Slave ship interior

The most extreme “Afrocity is a vile race traitor” claims notwithstanding, I would like my readers to know that the solution to this question is not as simple as one would think.

A close reading of this blog will tell you that it is not always full of anti-liberal sentiment.  Poignantly exploring my political past, present and future through the lens of a forgotten child, underscores my desire to present my case for conservatism, equality and women’s rights in a way that hopefully even liberals can relate to. But how does a conservative explain themselves to a liberal? As I learned after creating this video, you don’t. Its creation seemed to get the goat of several liberal viewers as if they believed I was attempting to manipulate and convert unsuspecting watchers into right wing nuts that attack Obamacare.

slave-ship-2While this blog and video is an assessment of  my own political situation as an African American female, there are arguments posited  here that collectively effects us as AMERICANS whether we are Democrats or Republicans.

Growing up, I had witnessed my share of participation in government “help” programs.  I would think that any criticisms offered by me, stemming from my experience living through these should be valid and understandable. An accusation recently entered against me was that I received a free ride through college due to my mother’s financial situation. Did I receive a government Pell grant to attend college yes, did it cover my entire tuition NO. What did I do? I worked two jobs.  In fact I have worked since it was legally allowable for me to do so.  For what my parental figure did not do, I made up for it two times over.

While liberals love to hear sweet nothings, security blanket feel good about themselves, phrases such as “helping the unfortunate and downtrodden” , they never seem to articulate the distinction between helping and enabling.  In the Republican camp, such distinctions are made clearer especially among my fellow African American conservatives. Everyone I have encountered offers a unique experience of what it means to be of color and a conservative. Not once have I ever heard an echo of disdain for our race. Our collective response to the rising statistics of violence and teen pregnancy among African American youth is one of concern, which is not greatly different from those of our race who are Democrats.

This image is one of the earliest photographs of Africans being rescued from a slave ship by the British Royal Navy from the British National Archives.

This image is one of the earliest photographs of Africans being rescued from a slave ship by the British Royal Navy from the British National Archives.

Before any moonbat attack dropping are delineated  upon myself or other black conservatives like Michael Steele, Condeleeza Rice Thomas Sowell please bother to listen to where our conclusions on race and politics derive from.  In many of our accounts, you can hear the same tone of empathy and a desire to seek a political solution.  Without knowing that we are conservatives,  it  can hardly be argued otherwise that we are NOT BLACK.  The history and struggles of our race in America has inextricably bonded us in collective trauma that seem inescapable. Our DNA time machine puts us all on that boat.  However we should all embrace the fact that our country’s democracy and freedom of expression has rendered African American individuals with experiences and  ideologies that could not make us more different. Yes, we were all in the same boat but we are seeking to liberate and understand ourselves in a myriad of ways.

Autographed Letter Signed,



29 Responses to “Afrocity Speaks: All in the Same Boat”

  1. manbearpig68 Says:

    These are great videos. It makes a lot of sense how you came to your conclusions and I’m sure many more people would do the same if they paid attention.

  2. I enjoyed hearing your story. 2008 was an eyeopener for me, too, as a nonwhite American. I lean more center-left, but I very much get where you are coming from. (The Democratic party left me, I didn’t leave it.)

    You explained yourself well and your youtubes don’t sound like proselytizing to me.

    Love the Frida Kahlo shirt. (It is right?)
    Is it this painting?

  3. Kathy Barkulis Says:

    Thanks for these videos Afro. I hope to meet you in person one day. You know, listening to your story made me think that your Mom did a lot of things right. Obviously, she raised an independant thinker, a critical thinker, and loved you unconditionally. Your story also proves that it is not impossible to break out of the cycle of poverty if one is committed to education and ambitious goals. Liberals would have us believe that the only way to get ahead is through their policies of handouts and freebies. This has always been the big lie that they use to garner their votes. But Bill Clinton, someone whom I voted for twice, proved that welfare REFORM was the key to truly helping the poor, regardless of their color. To me, I’ve always felt that there shouldn’t be specific programs and delineations for Blacks, Latinos, and Whites. I’ve felt that we should be focusing on economic disparities, regardless of color… avoid always classifying people by color. Bill Clinton’s welfare reform did this. Barack Obama wants to go back to the old days of racial divisiveness, as do the Progressives. It’s just another power grab by the Democrats, and has nothing to do with bringing us all together. That is why I am now a conservative. I guess you could say that Bill Clinton brought me here. To me, he was the best “Republican” president we’ve had.

  4. mcjj4 Says:

    Thank you for speaking out. I know that doing so is very hard and that the pressure around you is huge to bow down and do the “democrat” thing because of your race. You are so brave and speak truthful. I want our country to make EDUCATED choices based on FACTS. I do not want race to continue to be the basis for everything either attacks nor to be for a candidate! We cannot become truely united Americans until we on both sides of the race fence can be totally color blind in all things and instead use our brains to make decisions. Thank you for standing up and speaking out Afro…you are a True Patriot!

  5. bob Says:

    I’m more or less a Swede, 50 percenter, with a little other stuff mixed in. Back in the old days, Viking days, there was slavery too, white on white, a little known fact.

    Let us go forward together now, never slavery again, lets go forward now.

    And lets not get enslaved to Uncle Sam!

    Sarah Palin/2012

  6. wmcb Says:

    Wonderful videos, afrocity. You laid out your reasons for your political journey very clearly, and it makes sense. Funny, you don’t sound like a caricature of a rabid conservative to me, or like a liberal. You just sound like a sane, thoughtful person, who has figured out what’s important to her. Why can’t we just let each other be who/what we are, without all the demonizing?

    I’ve been on foodstamps, etc, too, and have no illusions about the poor, having been one of them and lived among them for so long. The poor are a mixed bag like anyone else. There’s nothing particularly noble or endearing or repellant about them as a group. Some are good folks who can and will do better for themselves if given a real chance, and some are jerks who will take and take all day long if you let them, and then get mad when you won’t cough up more. People who think the poor are all lazy do-nothings are wrong, and people who think they are all just pure and innocent oppressed souls who “never had any advantages” are wrong as well. They’re both – depends on the individual.

    Keep on doing what you’re doing. I like sane voices, and we need more of them in this country, whether I 100% agree on every single particular or not.

  7. Barkha Says:

    Afrocity –

    You are the kind of leaders we need our next generations to see / hear from. Keep up the good work!

    As a non-white immigrant woman myself, after having moved here I was surprised to see that most African Americans voted AGAINST the party that freed them, helped vote in Civil Rights legislature etc., etc. and continued to live (pardon my opinion – but that’s how I saw it) with the mentality that they needed to be “taken care of”, especially when I see other minority groups that immigrate here tend to be so successful.

    I don’t mean to sound preachy – certainly after listening to your humble and sincere video. However listening to you is inspiring indeed. I hope your blog gets very popular, and more people listen to what you have to say.

    Once again, keep up the good work, and thanks so much for sharing.

  8. johninca Says:

    African American conservatives are a threat to the evil empire; that’s why they are generally destroyed through character assassination. I hope Afrocity is ready to be called an Uncle Tom, an Oreo, race traitor, and a few obscene words as well.
    She will need to be strong– and I think she is.

  9. AfricanAgainstO Says:

    Great video – don’t want to repeat what everyone has said about laying out your transformation.

    Could hear the dogs every now and then trying to be part of the discussion in the background.

    • wmcb Says:

      LOL! I so recognized that “shake all over/ collar jingle” sound, but was wondering if non-dog people would know what it was!

  10. This is an outstanding post, afrocity, and I mean that very sincerely.

    It’s both a privilege and a pleasure, to have you on my blogroll and reader.

    Irish Rose

  11. loudmouthjewishbabe Says:

    Cool! I finally get to hear you. Keep posting on your evolving political journey. I have one particular ignorant Jewish relative who would just die if she heard your story. She has no intention of being “forced” via (unintended consequences) on Obamacare herself, but thinks she is “saving” others, especially minorities. Typical self-righteous thinking. She doesn’t believe Black or Jewish Republicans exist.

  12. Dan Ortiz Says:

    So tell me Afrocity, why are most of the blacks who grew up like you still living in poverty? I bet you have the gov to thank for your intelligence. you are very articulate that does not happen by accident.

    • afrocity Says:

      …It was no accident of the government either.

      As a child

      Years spent in private education: 6
      Years in public education 7

      Guess where I learned the most?
      Guess which system had the better more attentive teachers?
      Guess which system realized and nurtured my potential?

      • johninca Says:

        I believe Afrocity said that she went to Catholic school, so from her earliest years the saints were watching over her anima naturaliter Christiana. What a pity that her formative years were precisely when the true, unbloody sacrifice (Tridentine Mass) had just been replaced with that horrific English service. I pray that she discover some day what was wrongfully withheld from her.

      • Dan Ortiz Says:

        What is your story Johninca? You a republican catholic?figures. The angels made her smart by protecting her from inner city bad liberal experience. Leave it to right wingers to bring religion into everything.

  13. Rose Says:

    Well done. Well said. Wow. So much to say. But for now, just WOW. And thanks.

  14. Beth Says:

    Well done. Reading your post, seeing and hearing you gives me hope for the future. Brave and do-the-right-thing good people like you (in every color) is what makes America great and good. Thank you for sharing. It seems we are very different – yet we have the same values.

    • wmcb Says:

      I think a lot of Americans are waking up to what’s important, Beth. I’m more left than most people on here, and more right than some of my other dear PUMA friends.

      But the thing I am seeing among sane friends from conservative to somewhat liberal is an insistence on love for, and pride in this country, morality, self-respect, integrity, and accountability to THE PEOPLE. Those are the things we are all looking for and failing to see from either party in Washington. I think the movement of people who WANT OUR COUNTRY BACK, because it is OURS, not theirs, is all across party lines. I’d give up a few policy positions of disagreement, if I could vote for someone who really truly, deeply believed in responsible, accountable, REPRESENTATIVE government – not just their own agenda driven by their ideological dreams and particular favorite fat cats. Someone who had no qualms about cleaning house, and putting the leverage back with the voters instead of this or that lobby or special interest. I’m sick of swapping one set of bought politicians labeled R for another set of bought politicians labeled D, then back again. Sick to death of it.

      • afrocity Says:

        I think John McCain and Sarah Palin were willing to be those ideal politicians you speak of so clearly, WMCB. They were not given a chance.

        Perhaps Americans did not vote for change after all.

  15. iam7545 Says:

    AC – wonderful vlog – (video blog). You do great work here. As a Jew raised in a Jewish City I can relate. It was implied that Jews were to be good little Democrats.

    I demonstrated and picketed with Blacks and Jews for many civil rights causes in the late 60’s and somehow identified this with being a Democrat. Today I know this is not the case.

    My spiritual awakening came when Clinton became President. After realizing what a phony he was and how he charmed Blacks, Jews and feminists while stabbing them in the back my political life changed and continues to evolve in the direction of RIGHT.

    Like you it gets very lonely being a conservative Jew. I can’t imagine how any Jew could support Obama while Israel is being thrown under the bus by Obama.

    As you know AC – I can be loud, arrogant and in your face. I will tell you that I do the same in my community and challenge them to see how they have been duped.

    Keep up the goof fight AC! Check out my blog when you have time –

  16. CW Says:

    Afrocity, you are refreshing and modest and clear. I would like to talk to you about a project I’m working on. Don’t know how else to reach you, but my email is there and you can Google me. Thanks and keep it up.

  17. Bud White Says:

    Please continue with your insightful, open, and honest dialogues. Our eyes were opened by the vile treatment of Hillary. Don’t let them silence you. Your voice is a gift to democracy.

  18. Hi AC! {I am waving–do you see me?} 🙂 You hit it right out of the park when you said in part 2 you were asking ‘but where is your power derived from?’ imho, if we could ask ourselves that one little question when each issue comes up, it would help us understand what we really want , clearing out all the superficial forces that pull on us.

  19. Joanelle Says:

    AC – thank you so much for your videos – I identified with you when we met during the primaries at TC – but seeing and hearing you, helped me see our alignment even clearer.

    If you remember I too left the Dem party for many of the same reasons that you did – you articulate those reasons so well on this site.

    Thanks for sharing so freely – hopefully someday we will meet face to face – I’m in NJ but if you get any where in the tri-state area let me know – lunch or dinner would be fabulous to continue the discussion live!

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