CHARLES BARRON v. HAKEEM JEFFRIES: NOT MUCH OF A CONTEST; IS IT?
I really didn’t want to touch this race; however, some of my advisors convinced me to say something about it or be branded a chicken/lol.
You see near every time I write something about Charles Barron I get these strange (and often inane) calls or e-mails, from different folks with different strokes. And it doesn’t matter if I write something critical or something positive. They are out there and they are watching.
When I said his wife (Inez) was better qualified than Kathy Black to be school’s chancellor; I didn’t get a peep from the Barron sycophants; similarly when I devoted two columns commending him on his symbolic protest vote(s) against a particular Bloomberg budget. How come? And it has been like this for years: whatever I write relative to “Chucky-Bee” is under the microscope. So be it.
For some time now I haven’t even mentioned him since I have said enough on the subject. I have a writing-archive full of Barron treasures. And there sure are some gems: for sure. Charles Barron remains (to me) the most disappointing black elected official New York City has ever seen: the one elected who singularly squandered away his enormous talent and potential in deliberate fashion. The reason(s) still escape me; it’s that puzzling.
In this upcoming race for the formerly tenth congressional district (now numbered eight), I have already endorsed Hakeem Jeffries. I did it when he present congressman (Ed Towns) was still in the race and that surely isn’t changing today. It gets me nothing; and it will probably cause me some loss. Hakeem is by far the better choice right now. Seven or eight years ago I wouldn’t have told you this: but many things have changed since then.
While I am at this, let me personally and publicly thank Ed for his many years of public service, and for his pleasant sense of humor -which I always enjoyed. He did the right thing stepping out the race. Sometimes you just have to make way for the young(er) folks.
Now, if only Congressman Charlie Rangel could get the same memo Ed Towns got? Charles Rangel is like an amiable old relative who came to your house for Thanksgiving dinner (only), and is still there Memorial Day weekend: much to your chagrin.
Let me cut to the chase: come next month Hakeem Jeffries will be the new congressman. It wouldn’t even be a close election. I don’t even want to elaborate on this: that’s how much I feel about the race. Stick a fork in Charles: he is done; but I am glad he is running though- and that’s another story/lol.
In the new configuration, this district has almost thirty per cent whites. On Election Day that number will be about forty per cent (or higher) of the turnout. Do I really have to explain why I am finding this race boring? The white-vote alone will destroy Barron’s hopes for getting to play on the CSPAN House-stage.
What is painful to me are the things this campaign hasn’t brought out. Where are the big ideas for creative public policy? Where is the display of imaginative political thinking (Mugabe and Chavez at a candidate-announcement rally/geeze)? Where are the intellectual constructs that could illuminate our way to better government? Where are innovative ideas for dealing with a changing global economic order? Where are the simple notions demonstrating even a basic understanding of contemporary economics (capitalist or other)? Where is the articulation for efficiency in the public sector and fairness in the private sector? Where is the urgency needed for dealing with the metastasizing black community? Where are the verbal prescriptions for dealing with the many environmental, societal, economic, political and cultural ills: commonplace in contemporary USA? And I can go on, and on, and on, and on: like the Energizer bunny in heat; or like a teenager’s penis on Viagra; but it wouldn’t change a thing.
This has been the minstrel-show variety of a political campaign. And I guess we really shouldn’t be surprised. We were prepped for this; no? After all: life is a stage. Or is it always for certain people?
The question becomes this: why do some of us advance ourselves for public office? Is it because we are intellectually and morally equipped to understand and face the challenges presented; or is it for reasons of ego, glamour, media-clamor and glory? You shouldn’t seek public office if you refuse to think honestly and objectively. And that should go for any and everyone.
Look; I am not sure you are catching my drift here. Needless to say, I have run the risk of being condemned for the things I write: as per usual. C’est la vie!
Here we have two relatively talented individuals. One is militantly-aggressive but toxic; the other is a little too passive. In their own right they are both well-meant. One has left his potential in anachronistic jargon; the other is yet to realize his full potential. One has lost his way; the other is still searching. You can decipher this can’t you?
Stay tuned-in folks; and bet the rent on a Hakeem Jeffries victory.