April 20, 2001

Commentary

Puppet Strings Are Clearly Visible, Ward Connerly

By Raoul Lowery Contreras

I never liked puppet shows because I could always see the strings. Meet Ward Connerly, a prominent Black man who has an infinitesimal Black following but is adored by every white racist in the country.

Actually, with strings quite visible to me, they use Connerly to do their dirty work. I present Ward Connerly, unknowing handmaiden of the country's racists. Does he even know he is doing their work? I doubt it, for though fairly bright, his sponsorship of base racist initiatives is startling to those who can see the strings.

First, Ward Connerly is a product of California's capitol bureaucracy and that is not good. Secondly, he's a product of the color-blind California State University System, which is good. Thirdly, he's a wealthy man who made his money off Affirmative Action, that is sinful. Fourth, he's a confidant of former California Governor, Pete Wilson, Guardian Angel of the infamous and illegal Proposition 187. Five, Wilson appointed him a Regent of the University of California, where he sponsored a ban on affirmative action admissions. Six, Connerly raised money for the illegal Prop. 187. Seven, Connerly helped sponsor Proposition 209 to outlaw Affirmative Action in state business and college admissions. Eighth, carpetbagger Connerly tried to place on the Florida ballot, a Prop. 209 like measure. That led Florida Governor Jeb Bush to announce his own measure to soften Affirmative Action. Ninth, that action by Governor Bush, though designed to keep Connerly's outright ban off the ballot, enraged Florida Blacks so much they almost cost George W. Bush the Presidency.

Tenth, Ward Connerly has announced that he will head an initiative petition to place a Constitutional amendment on the California ballot that will outlaw California's surveying race on state forms and activities. That is really an important issue, Mr. Connerly.

Coincidentally, the "color blind society" he says he wants, explodes in Cincinnati after a white police officer kills a fourth Black man in five months. Ohio State Police are rushing into the city with the possibility of National Guard troops following to make the night streets of the city safe. Rioting, looting and armed confrontations between Blacks and White police start with the sun setting and a new curfew goes into effect. Racial profiling is a huge issue in Cincinnati because its police have killed 15 Black men in the past five years, while not killing that many White men, even though 60% of Cincinnati is White.

Let's see.The ban would apply to local agencies. In other words, we would never know if police racial profiling, illegal police racial profiling, even exists in local police agencies. Housing discrimination (there are some exceptions on this in his petition) or discriminatory employment hiring practices could not be quantified. The state would be prohibited from using federal racial information from the census in the required reapportionment of legislative/congressional districts— a pure violation of federal law. I'll bet Beverly Hills will be thrilled to be blindly redistricted into South-Central Los Angeles with its predominately Hispanic/Black population.

State chartered banks will no longer collect racial information on loan applications and loans, thus keeping authorities from knowing if racial red-lining occurs in traditionally discriminated against neighborhoods. School districts would not know the racial breakdown of neighborhoods when schools are staffed, staffed from a headquarters that may be miles away.

The taxpayer would not know whether public universities are attracting people from non-traditional college bound groups, or even that Asians are pushing whites out of the University of California.

Connerly declares: "The state has no business gathering racial information." Racists agree. Connerly says he wants a race/color blind society. So say racists. We know they don't mean it. Connerly made his money off Affirmative Action by counseling minority-owned companies on how to get state contracts by beating out white-owned companies on the basis of skin color. Now that he has his money and now that minority owned businesses are growing exponentially in numbers and competitiveness, he slams the door shut on help from the state. How magnanimous of him, now that he has his.

Connerly plans to raise $2-million for his petition. That would pay a year's private school tuition for 500 ghetto kids enabling them to escape the ghetto. Apparently, Connerly, like virulent White racists of Tom Metzgar's White Aryan Resistance and the Ku Klux Klan, doesn't care. He wants and sponsors everything racists want and sponsor. I see strings. Is he so blind that he doesn't?

Contreras can be emailed at: sdraoul@pacbell.net

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