My lifestyle résumé is not one that characteristically aligns with the stereotypical picture of a conservative. I am a single black female, raising four fatherless children, making enough income to just stay afloat in a job that has no areas of advancement. Those who learn of my political predilection are often taken aback and immediately begin to question my rationale as to say:
“You poor misguided fool, they don’t accept you, why would you follow their belief system?” Well what is “their” belief system?
The fundamental principles of the conservative is a belief in an individuals freedoms as outlined in the Constitution of the United States; equality of rights, justice and opportunity for all. We believe in moral, ethical and spiritual representation as it pertains to the individual with an emphasis on core values. We believe in the political process and endeavor to educate, organize and mobilize individuals on public policies that affect us all and practice our civic responsibilities such as voting. We do believe the role of the government is to provide critical functions that cannot be performed by the individuals or private organizations. Furthermore, it is my belief as a testimony to the strength that lies within us all, that it is an individuals right to either be a participant in the American dream or remain a complacent spectator.
Starting my journey into adulthood, I aligned myself with the typical political thought process of a bleeding heart liberal. “Blacks don’t get there fair share, we are disadvantaged in our schools, in social programs, at our jobs…..etc, etc.” I felt the federal government must come up with a solution to resolve all the wrong in my life as it was a direct result of the racist politicians making policies that keep me impoverished. “Besides, the government owes me for 400 years of slavery and another 100 of segregation and oppression…humph.” I felt as extreme about this as many others feel today, “the federal government should provide me with life essentials if I am unwilling to provide for myself; income, housing, food, childcare, car repair, clothing… you name it.” Nor should I have been held accountable for utilizing my freedoms and civic duties. I may have voted a time or two, but felt; “my vote doesn’t matter anyway, look what happened in the election in 2000 with Al Gore and George Bush!” I could have gone on like this forever, but it was not God’s will for me to remain so blissfully ignorant.
Now before there is a loud outcry of “FOUL”, I do realize that all democrats are not liberals however, this parochial philosophy of perceived living and the “current legislation now cares about the people” encompasses far to many good citizens who values align with a conservative lifestyle, yet due to tradition remain to check the box that has kept policy makers in place that perpetuate the very existence of the woman I once was. I am holding accountable those who want “change” but are not willing to work for it, recognize all dysfunction as it currently stands….change your values, your ideals of politics and see how they benefit you… change your core principles and remain focused on core goals….accepting the same lies and rhetoric has lead to the same inevitable outcome: Generational Poverty and a greater divide of the have’s and have nots.
What we all must see is there is legislation responsible for the state of poor people and creating more policies that heavy the load of the taxpayer must end. Isolating blacks to this statement I ask;
“When will we learn getting something for nothing has never benefited the whole?”
We have been feed crumbs and given pennies and we are required to be thankful for them. We have been trained for 400 years to remain complacent and compliant to our social status and if we do so they (liberals)will continue to give us something (Welfare, Medicaid, SSI, Food Stamps, Sec 8 Housing, etc) for nothing ( remain uneducated and uninformed). The impoverished, uneducated, dependency of our people is a plague on generations that must end now. If the answer to this is to align myself with more conservative views and those who share the like- then so be it. Furthermore, I joined the Frederick Douglass Foundation of Michigan (TFDF of MI) because they, despite my misguided beginning believe in people like me and applaud my efforts. It is TFDF of MI and now my own intention to liberate citizens of closed minds and closed mouths to stand up and take action for the sake of our children. Fostering any type of perpetual incompetence and impotence in any regard should be an area of concern, especially for a race of people who can’t afford to foster neither.
Alesha Martin is Communications Director for the Frederick Douglass Foundation of Michigan http://frederickdouglassfoundationofmichigan.blogspot.com/ . She owns PNL Personal Assistant Service in Saginaw, Michigan