The Rise of a New Black Conservative Movement

Photo Credit: Bruce Emmerling on Flickr

 

It is a new year, and a new decade. Changes are occurring in American politics. The Democratic Party is currently embroiled in a heated war between the establishment and far-left progressive factions. The Republican Party is also caught in a conflict between its own establishment and those who want to bring change. 

But there is another evolution occurring, especially on the right, one that has gone largely unnoticed until now. This change is happening in the realm of the black conservative movement with a growing number of right-leaning black Americans pushing for a change in GOP and the overall conservative movement. In essence, they are a new breed of black conservatives, and if their efforts are successful, it could make an immense mark on the nation’s political landscape. 

If you have read my work regarding the conservative movement’s relationship — or lack thereof — with the black community, you have seen some of the ideas we espouse. Our message differs from that of the traditional black conservative establishment in that it emphasizes a different view of, and approach to, the black community. We recognize that the messaging strategies used by the black conservative establishment, though well-intentioned, have been woefully impotent when it comes to reaching black American voters. It is time for a new approach. 

So what does this look like? 

It looks like conservatives talking about blacks as people deserving of dignity instead of treating them as mentally inferior. It means seeing them as fellow Americans instead of slaves on a fictional plantation. It means emphasizing truth over narrative and seeking a genuine understanding of those we wish to reach instead of relying on lazy stereotypes and meaningless platitudes. It means not being limited by the statistics the media selects for us and digging deeper to understand the true issues facing the black community. We do not obsess over racism as many do on the left, but we also do not discount its impact as many do on the right. 

Instead of a conservative movement that relies on talking points and narratives lacking nuance, the new black conservative movement seeks to foster a holistic understanding of the black community. This means promoting a real understanding of the black community, its culture, and its history. Rather than holding events that are ostensibly tailored to reaching black voters, but are attended by mostly non-blacks, we wish to see the Republican Party, right-leaning media, and conservative organizations engage directly with black Americans in their communities.

We favor an approach that involves up-close conversation and discourse instead of the mindless repeating of banal platitudes about Chicago’s homicide rates from a distance. The non-establishment black conservative wants to sell the virtues of conservative policies that promote free enterprise rather than only bashing socialism. 

Our focus isn’t just on Trump and the presidency; it is on winning black voters at the local and state levels, and in the legislative branch. We’re more likely to favor an organization like the Empower America Project, which is training minority and women candidates to run for office, over a group like Blexit, which has failed to reach black Americans because it still uses the traditional black conservative messaging strategy.  

 It might sound like I’m bashing those who adhere to the establishment black conservative approach. That is not my intention. I respect the fact that most of these individuals wish to make a difference. But to be blunt, the approach they have been using is the exact same messaging strategy that the right has been using for decades — and it has failed miserably. 

Conservatives have been saying that black Democrats are slaves on the Democratic plantation since the ‘60s. It was off-putting then, and it’s off-putting now. The GOP has refused to develop a viable strategy to reach black voters and other minorities. Since the ‘60s, they have surrendered the black voter to the left while convincing their members to believe blacks don’t vote for Republicans because they just want “free stuff.” Yes, that’s yet another stereotype that should be debunked. We wish to see this change. 

The non-establishment black conservatives are not looking to push the movement to the left. On the contrary, we embrace the ideas of free markets, liberty, and protecting our God-given rights. We despise socialism and any other form of statism as much as any lover of liberty. 

But we do wish to effect a change in the zeitgeist on the right when it comes to the black community. We wish to see the Republican Party return to its roots as the Party of Lincoln — a party that valued its relationship to black Americans. We want a conservative movement that attracts black voters instead of repelling them. 

Many of these individuals are going to go kick it into high gear in 2020, creating content designed to help conservatives change their mindset and messaging towards black Americans. But they will also create material for blacks who have rejected the GOP. And, like other conservative content creators, we will continue developing content exploring conservative ideas, policies, and other elements for a wider audience. 

In this new year, alternative black conservative voices will make themselves heard. If anything, it will show the political world that black conservatives are not a monolith, and we do not all have the exact same message. Perhaps an alternative method can attract more black support. It’s worth a shot, isn’t it? After all, what the hell do we have to lose? 

 

Let me know what you think in the comments below!

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