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September 12 2019

Debra Messing, leave black Trump supporters alone

via The Hill
by Patrice Lee Onwuka

"Will & Grace" sitcom star Debra Messing celebrated a Birmingham church sign that called black Trump supporters mentally ill. She later backtracked, but the damage was done. Messing, the church’s pastor, and many on the left cannot fathom that black people support President Trump or his policies. For Messing and every other narrow-minded person out there, let me say it loud and clear: leave us alone.

I join a growing crowd of blacks who support what President Trump is trying to do: expand freedom and opportunity for all Americans. There are also blacks like actor Isaiah Washington who have had enough of the Democratic Party and are walking away.

To believe that I shouldn’t support whomever I choose simply because of my skin color is insulting. 

All black people do not think alike — nor should we.

As a black conservative, I stand for diversity of thought and freedom of expression within this community. I don’t agree with everything my brothers and sisters believe, but I respect their right to hold their views. All I ask is for the same in return.

The majority of blacks in America have maintained an unwavering loyalty to the Democratic Party for generations, but, according to a recent poll over half feel taken for granted.

Growing discontent with failed Democratic policies has opened the door for President Trump and conservatives to demonstrate why stronger economic opportunity, choice in education, and greater freedom is more empowering to blacks than the status quo or the promise of an even bigger government.

I often get asked just what policies of the Trump administration I support. 

Let’s begin with criminal justice reform. I am a big supporter of federal and state efforts to reform treatment of the incarcerated and to better support those leaving the system. 

I had the privilege of testifying in July before the House Judiciary Committee hearing on Women and Girls in the Criminal Justice system. I discussed why women should have dignity as they serve their time and how states can reform occupational licenses to make it possible for a woman with a record to take up a vocation after serving her time. These are bipartisan areas of agreement. 

I applauded the First Step Act, which included sentencing reform, ending the shackling of pregnant women and providing free feminine hygiene products to female prisoners. This bipartisan law was passed at the end of 2018 after decades of hard work by conservatives, libertarians, and liberals coming together to advance justice reforms. From #cut50 to the American Conservative Union, Van Jones to Newt Gingrinch, we are reminded that the goal of helping people can bring together unexpected bedfellows and unite our country.

Yet, not enough attention has been drawn to this effort. 

President Barack Obama tried to advance criminal justice reform, but fell short. Like it or not, by throwing his support behind the bill, President Trump added the pressure needed to push the bill over the finish line. 

This law will help men and women of all races, but the impacts on the black community are undeniable.

Of the 3,100 inmates who were released early from federal custody because of the First Step Act, 92 percent of them were black men.

These are fathers, sons, brothers, neighbors and workers who will now have a chance to be productive citizens.

Work is a critical element of their successful transition back to society. About two-thirds of former inmates are arrested for a new offense within three years of their release. However, according to Manhattan Institute research, former inmates who quickly found jobs were significantly less like to reoffended than those who did not. 

The First Step Act encouraged training and technical education programs as well as offered incentives to inmates who participate in recidivism-reduction programs. The Trump Administration is also working with private sector companies to hire former inmates. 

These efforts are aimed at helping people to help themselves. 

The rippling impacts of justice reforms can lead to better outcomes for children of inmates, who tend to face a host of educational and behavioral challenges, and lightens the burden that falls on other family members, society, and taxpayers.

Historically low unemployment rates and the narrowing of racial gaps in unemployment are also positive outcomes for blacks under the Trump administration. 

 

People want to work. A job provides fulfillment, purpose, and economic security. A career inspires individuals to believe that upward mobility is within their grasp far more than a bevy of social programs that keep individuals reliant on government. 

Does this mean that I support everything that the President has ever said or done? Of course not. But Debra Messing, the pastors who put up the ridiculous sign, and others on the left have allowed their hatred for President Trump to blind them to the good outcomes he is achieving. 

Keep up with the insults and antics, but eventually they will notice that many free and free-thinking blacks are walking away.





Independent Women's Forum is an educational 501(c)(3) dedicated to developing and advancing policies that aren’t just well intended, but actually enhance people’s freedom, choices, and opportunities. IWF is the sister organization of the Independent Women’s Voice.​
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