to get off the pot. If the Chinese, Japanese, Koreans, Mexicans, East Indians, and [others] coming from third-world and war-torn countries can live the American dream, why can’t we?
Although Charles Miller II works in the Office of Admissions at Urbana University helping students realize their dreams every day, he has another passion. He loves politics. But he readily admits that a lot of people don’t want to hear what he has to say about the Republican Party. And with the new influx of African American Republicans, he’s feeling slightly optimistic about the coming elections.
“We have a two-party system. But we still believe at this stage of the game that we can have complete access to the American pie while participating in only half of it,” Miller says with a chuckle. “We’ve been putting all our eggs in one basket. How can you expect to throw all of your support into one party, and then if your party doesn’t win, have a seat at the table?”
Miller says that one size does not fit all when it comes to blacks and politics. “We’re 36 million people. How can we all be adequately represented by one political party? Politics is a game and we have to have representatives on both sides,” he adds in a more serious tone.
Although he may not realize it, Miller is not alone in his thinking. In fact, 11% of African American voters sided with the Republican Party last November. Miller, who has been a BE reader for the past 20 years, points out that despite the growing number of black Republicans, the majority of African America
ns still vote Democrat, and that majority is quick to criticize and ostracize the emerging minority. “It frightens me that when someone says they are Republican, suddenly their race consciousness and blackness are called into question,” he says.
Thomas D. Boston, president of Boston Research Group Inc. and a member of the BE Board of Economists, agrees that we need to begin by thinking differently about what leadership is and how to exercise power. “Black political representation is very important. We may not always get where we want to go with it, but without it, we will certainly go nowhere,” Boston says. “We are simply learning that in order to be successful in entrepreneurship, one also has to leverage the political structure.”
Charles E. Miller II, 44, College admissions, Urbana, Ohio, Message board comment: I thank God for those leaders that have brought us this far, but the sooner we can admit a huge portion of our dilemma as a people is the result of “group think,” the better. In a multiparty political system, to refuse to function outside the acknowledged “group boundary” or to imply that the current leadership group will be beholden to anyone other than their electoral base is to be bound in “group think.” If we’re going to flourish then we better do political business with the party partial to business and capital as well as with the one that