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Jan-March, 2009 Issue: Vol 1


Blacks as Conservative as Republicans on Some Moral Issues

Ronald Ayers

I’m Ronald Ayers, and I’m a Black Conservative.

A great many black folks, and a lot of white folks that I’ve come in contact with have the notion that the drive toward racial, political and economic freedom for black Americans in this country started with Martin Luther King Jr's. leadership of the civil rights movement or, the involvement of certain civil rights leaders such a Jesse Jackson, or an Al Sharpton with the Democratic Party.

            Actually, it was white Radical Republicans along with Black Conservatives such as Fredrick Douglas operating in a post civil war America  that were responsible for black men having the right to vote in this country before white women had the right to vote.

Black men were given the vote with the passage of the 15th Amendment in 1870, but were effectively barred from exercising it by the use of poll taxes and literacy tests. Black folks were finally given full access to the vote in the 1960s with the passage of the 23rd amendment (abolishing poll taxes) and passage of the 1964 Voting Rights Act. Suffrage for women was just as uneven. It was granted first in the Wyoming territory in 1869, but it was not until 1920 with the passage of the 19th amendment that all women everywhere in the US won the vote.

Black Conservatives such as  Booker T. Washington, the founder of Tuskegee Institute helped form a collective conservative consciousness among common black folks that gave our race more of a spiritual affinity with conservative Republicans than with Democrats.

Today, unlike the majority of African Americans, Black conservatives such as myself generally oppose affirmative action and government minority business set-aside programs, oppose minimum wage laws , and oppose any increase in social welfare spending. Black conservatives favor the death penalty, privatization of government services, deregulation of business, and voucher systems for public housing and for education.

            There are reasons more numerous than I can enumerate here for the separation of black people’s quest for political and economic freedom in America from the Republican party, to our present day monolithic tethering to the Democrats, and to liberal thinking.

            But, if truth be known, black folks are just as conservative as republicans on some moral issues. In fact, black folks have more in common with conservative republican philosophy than most of us will admit.

            Here’s a little quiz for my black brothers  and sisters out there. (White folks ya’ll can take this quiz too. I ain’t excluding anybody. Word!)

1.      Are you against affirmative action and reparations?

2.      Do you want police to be tough on crime?

3.      Do you support gun control?

4.      Would you like to see lower taxes?

5.      Do you think the United States should have a strong military?

6.      Are you for or against legalized abortion?

7.      Do you agree that marriage is the union between a man and a woman?

If you are black and agree with the above ideas then you’re just like me. You’re a black conservative. The difference between us might be that I’m not ashamed to say I’m black, that I’m conservative my political thinking, and that I agree with the principles of the Republican Party.

            Contrary to popular opinion I believe there are a significant number of black conservatives out there hiding in the closet (some might say hiding under a rock). I say this because about 30-40 percent of blacks tend to come down on the conservative side of almost every issue you can name.

            If you don’t believe me when I say black folks are closet conservatives, maybe you’ll believe what the folks over at the Gallup polling organization have to say on the issue.

            According to Gallup:

        31 percent of black Democrats in America say homosexual relations are morally acceptable, roughly the same as the 30% of Republicans.

The fact that black Democrats are much closer to Republicans on this issue is note worthy given that blacks overwhelmingly identify themselves as Democrats. The issue of black views on family related moral issues is also noteworthy given the recent vote in California to approve Proposition 8, which effectively amended the state constitution to define legal marriage as only between a man and a woman.

        38 percent of black Democrats felt it is was morally acceptable for people to have a baby outside of marriage. 39 percent of Republicans felt the same.

        31 percent of black Democrats felt that homosexual relations were morally acceptable. 30 percent of Republicans felt the same.

        37 percent of black Democrats felt that abortion was morally acceptable. 25 percent of Republicans felt abortion was morally acceptable.

        46 percent of black Democrats felt sex between an unmarried man and woman was morally acceptable. 46 percent of Republicans felt the same.

        56 percent of black Democrats agreed with stem cell research using human embryos while 48 percent of Republicans accepted stem cell research as morally acceptable.

        30 percent of black Democrats felt that marriages between same sex couples should be recognized as law, while 22 percent of Republicans felt this way.

Despite the liberal orientation of the Democratic Party toward moral issues, blacks perhaps because of our high degree of religiosity, are pulled in the other more conservative direction that is typical of Republicans.

            So there you are. The truth is out. To use a phrase coined by one of the founders of the NAACP the great W.E.B. Dubois, “The Souls of Black Folk” is really conservative and republican, rather than liberal and democrat.

            So, I’m issuing a call to arms.

Black Democrats!  Black liberals!  Stop suppressing yourselves. Come on out the closet! Reconnect with your spiritual and ideological parent, the Conservative Republican movement. You have nothing to lose but your enslavement to the Democratic Party and its moribund liberal ideology!

            I’m Ronald Ayers, and I’m a Black Conservative.


View my page on Hirsch Metro Alumni Network

Click here to read: The Black Conservative, a column by Ronald Ayers that examines the burning issues facing Americans today from the perspective Black Conservative, and Conservative point of view.

Aegis Publishing House, 13800 S. Division # 8, Blue Island, IL. 60406. 708-897-0123