(BALTIMORE – May 21, 2019) – African Americans in Baltimore have a deeply entrenched loyalty to the Democratic Party. Other than a Larry Hogan, Republicans are considered the devil around these parts. Hell, even the Governor gets a jab every now and then just for G.P., like the intermittent remarks made by some Democrats over the Red Line. It doesn’t matter that former Governor Martin O’Malley could have made the Red Line project “shovel-ready” before he left office to go unsuccessfully run for president. Nope! Nobody cares! Just blame it all on the guy across the aisle.
And as for our beloved Democratic heroes, like Congressman Elijah Cummings – you’d better be very careful if you go talking about him in a bad way. After all, he’s Elijah Cummings! And he does no wrong. Right?
Sure, he helped put a white guy (Bill Cole) in a historically black City Council seat vacated by Keiffer Mitchell in his mayoral bid years ago. Sure, he never said a word to O’Malley for locking up more black people than most any mayor in American History.
These issues are not important! What’s important is supporting establishment Democrats, no matter what. Right?
Oh, and even though Cummings said, “Black people, you gotta step up your game” in the midst of the Freddie Gray Unrest at a rally at Empowerment Temple, everybody knew what he meant. Right? I mean, never mind that the white media had thoroughly demonized African Americans in Baltimore during the 2015 riots. Never mind that even our own beloved black president called locals “thugs.” And never mind that there were a few really, really bad cops, like those on the infamous Gun Trace Task Force, who were criminally responsible for wreaking mayhem on the streets of Baltimore, especially to African American victims of their brutality.
This is how, as African Americans, we have been trained to think. Right? Just go with the flow. Right? Don’t expect anything. Right?
Harford County Democrat Mary Ann Lisanti called Maryland’s largest African American jurisdiction a “nigger district”. And that’s just dandy, right? We all knew what she was trying to say. Right?
Black elected officials in the Maryland House of Delegates finally get the once in a lifetime opportunity to elect an African American Speaker of the House. That’s a good thing, but even Cummings’ wife, Maya Rockeymoore Cummings, wasn’t having it. In a memo directed to the black elected officials on her Facebook page, she essentially admonished them to support Maggie McIntosh, a white woman; and if they didn’t, she threatened retribution.
Is that cool? In 2019?
But, hey! It’s The Elijah and Maya Show, right? We’re just African Americans, right? The equivalent of second-class citizens, right? It doesn’t matter how you treat us, how many times you lock us up, how often you work against the community, or how often you take federal money slated for Baltimore’s black community and put that money downtown instead – as did former Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, another one of Cummings’ good buddies. Right?
No matter how they treat us, we are voting for the Democrats like a happily battered wife. Right?
This is what I am clear on: Not all black Democrats here in Maryland care about the welfare of all black people. Additionally, not all white Democrats in Baltimore actually give a rat’s bottom about our issues in the black community. North & Charles can get transformed overnight, but North & Patterson Park looks like it did after the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. So, what! Right?
Put differently, what has the Democratic Party actually done for black people in Baltimore over the past 50 years? And if you’re only answer is the high percentage of black elected officials, then my question becomes: And what in terms of economic development has that translated into for the black community?
African Americans are the most loyal voting demographic in Maryland. Yet, Baltimore’s black community looks worse than it did after the 1968 Riots. Our schools are deplorable and a black man in the 21217 zip code has more of a likelihood of going to prison than to Harvard. A black woman is more likely to be a single mother than a college graduate. This is the reality here. There are simply too many parts of Baltimore’s black community that have not been improved in half a century or more.
Why is this so, given that we have African American representation on every level of government: Federal, state and local? Where’s the beef?
Anyway, the latest political clamor is that Cummings and his wife might have been caught with their hands in the cookie jar (Top Democrat’s wife may have gained ‘illegal private benefit’ from his committee activities by Alana Goodman | May 20, 2019 03:49 PM). I swear to beans, I hope it is not true.
You see, although I am not a Cummings fan (this is the same man who pushed Catherine Elizabeth Pugh for Mayor) – I still would hate to see a person so many black seniors love and revere (he just spoke at Morgan’s graduation this past weekend) get kicked out of Congress for yet another example of stupidity. What ticks me off the most are the dollar amounts mentioned in this article.
If Cummings actually has the kind of money noted, then why didn’t he just take a small portion and buy a building at Penn-North and make it some kind of empowerment center for the community? Had he done so, I’d be his biggest fan.
You see, he was one of the people grandstanding at Penn-North as that Westside intersection became the epicenter of the Freddie Gray Unrest – as if he was a regular visitor to that corner.
Truth be told, you’d be hard-pressed to find any of those so-called leaders at Penn-North on any given day. Instead, Penn-North gets zero attention from anybody – other than a cop car posted there throughout the day. Tell you what. Go and try to visit The Arch Social Club. This historic institution is currently under siege by miscreants. Yet, nobody has lifted a finger to make a difference. It looks more bad off now than during the riots.
Penn-North is cataclysmic. Drugs, addicts, trash, dealers – all of these elements are destroying an otherwise beautiful part of town. Four years after Freddie Gray, none of those famous faces have returned and the neighborhood suffers because of it.
The TV cameras are gone, and so are those attention-seekers … like Cummings.
The point here is about accountability. You can’t use public office to get rich. And if you’re black, the stakes are even higher because for those who do not know, Maryland is a former slave state and the racism here is highly representative of this historical fact.
In a 9-to-1 Democratic city, the elite Democrats in the club can do no wrong. And if they do, no worries. The gang has your back. The problem becomes, however, that in all of this chicanery, it is the African American community which is continually pimped. For instance, at election time, signs go up that read: Vote For The Democrats!
I find this to be an insult to my community’s intelligence.
Personally, I don’t care what you go and take for yourself. Just give something back to those in need. And if you want to be rich, then leave office and start a business. But you can’t do both, especially if you’re black! This just doesn’t seem to translate to our elected officials. They get into office and come to think that it’s all about them and theirs.
There is no way on God’s green earth that Maya Rockeymoore-Cummings should have ever become Chair of the Maryland Democratic Party. There is no way she should have even thought about running for governor. She has zero track record of service to the black community here in Maryland. Yet, Democrats turned a blind eye and gave her a pass. Hope it was worth it, because now, both Elijah and Maya have very serious questions before them. And if the facts are true, they won’t be in politics much longer.
Another lesson here is that if you are going to go after the king, don’t miss! There is a heavy price to pay!