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Fresh off of being blackballed by the NAACP and crashing their convention, Deneen Borelli and CL Bryant gave me individual interviews. You're going to love what they had to say...
As was widely reported in the right wing blogosphere, Deneen Borelli and CL Bryant sought clearance to speak at the 102nd NAACP Convention held in Orlando Florida this past weekend. The convention spanned into this week, ending on July 17th. I asked Borelli and Bryant what prompted them to attend the convention this year, and they stated that they were denied permission to address the convention attendees by NAACP senior leadership. Undaunted, they sought to have a booth at the event only to be told that all booth space was sold out. So they bought general admission passes and simply attended the convention.
What they found was a sparsely populated booth space that clearly could have held a booth for them. Obviously they were lied to, but why? What could possibly be so bad about two blacks seeking a booth space at the Convention? Borelli stated that the NAACP was attempting to silence and blackball them to prevent their message from going out to attendees. How were they received? Just what happened when they showed up? The attendees were kind and open to discussing the ideals of conservatism.
Bryant observed that the NAACP has an aging membership and that many of the younger attendees were brought there by their family members or pastors. Bryant was less than impressed by the scare tactics, fear mongering drawn from a hyper focus on the Zimmerman verdict.
Bryant saw conference leadership elevating the politics of victimhood for the majority of the conference by placing the Zimmerman verdict center stage. It was clear that the intent was to put fear into the hearts of black parents: "whites are out to kill your kids." Even though Zimmerman is Hispanic. Bryant noted that "statistically there isn't an epidemic of whites killing blacks, the epidemic is the killing of blacks by blacks at a rate of 93%."
Bryant noted that it was "evident that they were trying to galvanize their base to action for the midterms and perpetuate the victim mentality into a new generation of voters. Their aim is to move the new generation into the welfare state."
When Borelli and Bryant approached convention goers about the possibility of hearing a conservative viewpoint presented at the convention, each said they were "open to that and saw no problem with it." So the desire to present only one viewpoint is a top down decision that does not represent the entirety of the NAACP membership.
The tenor of the convention was a shameful exploitation of the Martin tragedy by using it as a racial talking point, which elicited a very visible and audible reaction from the audience. An enormous picture of Trayvon Martin displayed on a monitor above NAACP President Ben Jealous reduced the slain youth to a prop to support the divisive message of racism on the part of Zimmerman and the jury that found him not guilty of 2nd Degree Murder. This was done in spite of the families and the FBI stating that race was not a factor in this case.
I asked Borelli if she saw a way forward for getting our message out to blacks that are receptive to at least hearing it, with the barriers that the NAACP so wrongly placed before them. Her answer:
"We at FreedomWorks will continue to move forward with our message of empowerment. It's going to take freedom loving Americans coming together to take a stand against the NAACP's refusal to permit conservatives speaking at their convention, essentially preventing the message of freedom from going forth. Our message of limited government, liberty, freedom, school choice, energy independence, and entrepreneurship is exactly what Americans need to hear."
"On the flip side the NAACP is very divisive and uses race card tactics to whip up emotions to cover for their lack of ideas."
I asked how we can be effective in countering the narrative of victimhood parrotted by the NAACP. Bryant was clear:
"We must utilize Empower.org and our Content of Character Tour effectively. The Tour kicks off on college campuses this fall, encouraging the implementation of Dr. King's Dream of judging by the content of each individuals character and not the color of their skin.
Any fool can take stuff off the table that someone else placed there. We must get youth to understand that they must add to the table, ante up, contribute to society, rather than be a drain on it."
Borelli spoke about the NAACP Convention experience on Fox News:
The climate in this country is right now is screaming for this type of tour. Honest discussions on race between black and white, conservative and liberal. Please visit Empower.org and revclbryant.com to learn more about the message of freedom and what you can do to be a part of sharing that message as well. If you're on Twitter, you can tweet Deneen and CL your ideas as well.