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On Monday, I was honored to host the Empower Liberty Summit in Las Vegas, Nevada. When the NAACP declined to allow me or the Rev. C. L. Bryant to speak at their convention, we were happy to hold our own summit to address the issues that matter to the black community today, to talk about the ideas the NAACP doesn’t think they should hear.
Think of it, the NAACP’s leadership is blacklisting blacks who have different ideas about the role of government in our lives. Tragically, this once venerable organization that sought to advance all blacks now segregates blacks based on political views. If you are a black liberal you get to sit at the counter – you get a voice, but if you are a black conservative you sit outside.
The issues facing the black community are too serious to ignore, however, which is why we gathered on Monday to address them head on.
We believe empowering individuals is the best path for prosperity. The NAACP believes in empowering the state. It’s a model that has been tried, and that hasn’t worked.
For far too long, the black community has lagged behind other demographic groups in the U.S.
Blacks suffer from sky-high unemployment rates, now at 10.7 percent; blacks have the lowest average incomes; black children are trapped in failing public schools, and are the victims of deplorable crime ridden urban areas like Chicago.
For far too long, organizations like the NAACP have witnessed these horrible trends and they have not changed course. Instead, the NAACP stubbornly sticks to liberal policies and politicians despite their proven failures. Instead of challenging these losing policies, the NAACP promotes them.
Instead of embracing school choice the NAACP rallies against it, supporting the government monopoly that sets our children up for failure.
Black families with lowest average incomes are hardest hit by rising energy prices, yet instead of promoting the cheapest forms of energy, the NAACP rallies against them, promoting the president’s policies that he admits will cause electricity costs to skyrocket.
High electricity prices disproportionately harm black families. In Ohio black households spend 6.3 percent of their annual budget on electricity while all households spend 3.5 percent.
The Environmental Protection Agency’s new rules for power plants will force electricity prices higher adding to the black economic burden. More money spent on utilities and gasoline means less money for food, rent and clothes.
Even though we were denied a speaking slot at the NAACP for the second year in a row, FreedomWorks was pleased to be able to set up a booth in the exhibit hall where we were able to interact directly with activists and address some of the concerns the NAACP refused to touch.
Each of the panelists appearing at the summit - myself, Rev. C. L. Bryant, Brenda Flank, Lesli Brower, and Wayne Dupree - has been verbally attacked for their views. I’ve been called a House Negro, Aunt Jemima , a sell-out, a traitor and worse. But the NAACP leadership does not defend black conservatives. No, the group criticizes them.