The Congressional Black Caucus Should Thank Donald Trump

Rather than attacking at every turn and continually accusing President Trump of racism, as the Congressional Black Caucus constantly does, the CBC should be grateful to Trump for finally doing what no other president in modern history has -- gotten national attention drawn to their districts.

In a recent release, CBC Chair Karen Bass stated, “Today, President Trump doubled down on his racist attacks against Congressman Cummings…” Truth is not racist, but Trump, it seems, cannot criticize any person of color without it being seen as such. However, the issue should not be about racism it should be about truth, and Trump’s accusations about Rep. Elijah Cummings’ (D-MD) district being a rat-infested hellhole are largely true. Trump didn’t call Cummings a “n*gger”, he didn’t say “That black fool is incompetent.” Others may have read that, but it isn’t what he typed.

What Trump has done is focus national attention on a U.S. congressional district in dire need of help -- federal, state and local, and the only reason that attention is now there is because of a single Trump tweet.

Liberals revel in the reputation of being the “party of the poor,” of being the ones who “care about blacks and minorities” and who seek to lift us up. They maintain this reputation by constantly echoing the mantra and thereby proving the adage “If you repeat something long enough it comes to be regarded as truth,” whether it is or isn’t. It’s precisely this reason – that “we’re the party of blacks” -- that they should be thrilled with Trump’s tweet and the results it has wrought.

I live in Colorado. During a recent discussion with a friend, he said, “I had no idea things were like that in Baltimore. I’ve never been there and thought it was just another nice, oceanside city with a pretty skyline, beaches and professional sports teams.”  How or why would he know any more than that? We’re in Colorado. I suspect my friend represents tens of millions of Americans who had no idea the degree of suffering, hopelessness, squalor, poverty, drugs, rat-infested filth, and decay their fellow man is living in right here on our own soil -- until Trump. That millions now do and are voicing concern should be to the CBC’s delight, not consternation.

Now that he’s knocked out Maryland’s 7th CD, with any luck Trump will begin making the rounds to other CBC member districts, because the truth is, most have also experienced failures of leadership, are similarly in dire need of help and the communities most in need of that help are the predominantly black ones. (Interestingly, the predominantly-white neighborhoods seem to fare much better.)  

Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA) has been in Congress since 1991 representing south-central Los Angeles, Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX) has been representing inner-city Houston since 1995. Gwen Moore (D-WI), inner-city Milwaukee, Robin Kelley (D-IL) inner-city Chicago, on and on it goes. If and when these communities make the news it’s most likely for shootings or other such grim reporting.  Many if not most of these districts more closely resemble third-world nations or war zones than ‘progressive’ communities. ‘Progress’ toward the American dream isn’t being made by their residents. Young men such as Lateo Garrett of Detroit (Michigan’s 13th CD, represented by Rashida Tlaib) who was killed this summer over a pair of sunglasses in yet another district where gangs, drugs, poor schools, low property values, and blight abound, don’t even make the evening news.

Drawing the nation’s attention to them may actually be the catalyst for some much-needed focus on improving them. Such attention is now squarely on Baltimore and perhaps help is finally on the way. Charitable organizations like Habitat for Humanity, Food for the Poor, Direct Relief and perhaps dozens of others have been alerted to the need for boots-on-the-ground in Baltimore’s blighted communities. At this very moment, activists from around the country -- mostly conservatives -- are on the streets in Baltimore helping clean its most filthy neighborhoods up. By some estimates over 12 tons of trash has been removed from Baltimore’s streets in less than two weeks. In two weeks they’ve done what hasn’t happened in thirty-six years of Elijah Cummings’ representation. (Though he is getting lots done for the city’s illegal citizens.)

It’s our nation at its finest, Americans helping Americans, and the call-to-arms was sounded by a Trump tweet. Why anyone would have a problem with that is a mystery, but these are the exact same representatives who sat on their hands and staunchly refused to applaud Trump’s announcement that we had achieved record low black unemployment in his State of the Union address. They couldn’t bring themselves to acknowledge such momentous news for their constituents for loathing its deliverer.

Those who claim to care the most about blacks should be the most grateful, but they aren’t. They are instead focused on accusations of racism and securing (taxpayer-funded) freebies and benefits for illegals while the constituents they supposedly serve wallow away in squalor. But fear not, downtrodden, after all these decades help is on the way. Thanks to a simple tweet.

Derrick Wilburn is a Centennial Institute fellow, Founder of and Executive Director of Rocky Mountain Black Conservatives.