Towards the end of June, I was a guest of a local rapper by the name of E.D. Nix, who was celebrating the release of his brand-new album “Blvck Economics”.
Midway through the rooftop party, I looked off in the direction of Municipal Auditorium, a hulking white elephant that is located in the Treme, one of the oldest black neighborhoods in the United States. The more I took in the view from the 925 Common building, I thought about the ancestors that paved the way for us to have a rooftop party to celebrate black excellence.
As soon as local comedian Mark Caesar finished speaking, I took to the mic and gave a small speech.
“We are standing here on the shoulders of those who came before us,” I said, “Our paths to this point in time was created by the footprints of our ancestors.”
Less than two weeks after that rooftop party speech, I told that same story to Jay Banks, who represents the New Orleans City Council district I live in, on my podcast.
“Each day that I go to work,” he told me during our conversation, “I know I’m standing on the shoulders of those who came before me.”
In the black community, respecting our elders is something that is ingrained in us from birth. That’s not to say to blindly agree with everything our elders do or say but respect the work they put in to put us as a community into a better position.
In the case of the primary race between Nina Turner and Shontel Brown, it’s a battle of a chaos agent against a rising star in the Democratic Party in the state of Ohio.
Despite the fact I believe in a lot of the stuff Nina Turner says (as I did with Bernie), I feel that constantly operating from a point of rage as well not finding a middle ground much less knowing how to compromise is something that would turn me off as a voter.
Not to mention the fact that the rallies, save for that Dr. Cornel West character that shows up out of hibernation every four or five years, look as unseasoned and bland as a cookout in a lily-white Chicago suburb when the congressional district that Nina wants to represent is 53% black.
It’s as if Nina wants to basically cut off the noses of black voters because in her mind, they’re the establishment and what’s wrong with the Democratic Party.
With Shontel Brown, you see a positive vibe and a reasonable message that can attract the main voting base of the Democratic Party; older black voters and of course, black women.
It’s why Brown, not Turner, earned the blessings of elders like Joyce Beatty and Jim Clyburn.
In the eyes of Clyburn and Beatty, they see themselves in Brown. They know she’s going to continue their legacy in Washington.
That being said, Cleveland, do the right thing. Vote for someone that isn’t going to Washington to be some chaos agent and give bulletin board material for the GOP.