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Hangin' With the Home Boys

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Hangin' With the Homeboys:
Courtin' the Black Vote '08
Min. Paul Scott

You can set your clock by it. Every year they show up in front of a bunch of well dressed, college educated, middle class black folks who are supposed to "rep" the entire African American community. The moderator asks the same polite questions that he posed last election and he gets the same, well rehearsed answers that he got last election.

Just once, I'd like to see Tyrone "T-Boogie" Johnson grab the mic and yell,

"What ya gonna do for the hood, homie!"

as the stunned presidential candidates duck for cover under the dias.

Tis the season for political strategists to find new and imagin....

OK... they’re the same old, unimaginative strategies that they've always used; warmed over. It's the same technique year in and year out. Go to a few black mega churches, shake a couple of hands, attend the NAACP/Urban League Conventions and make a lot of grandiose speeches containing promises that you have no intention of keeping.

Simple isn't it?

Conventional wisdom says that if you invoke the name of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. enough times, most well off black folks will follow you through hell wearing gasoline underwear.

But that doesn't apply to "tha hood" where Dr. King, himself, found his harshest critics.

While you may be able to finagle a couple of votes from the black middle class by a nice speech, the hood wants action.

See, the people in the hood have "issues". Middle class blacks have "concerns" but poor folks have "issues."

While the biggest concern of Dr. Horatio Farnsworth Jackson may be the rising taxes on his summer cottage on the lake, Lakesha Johnson is more concerned about how she is going to pay the rent next month.

The irony of a presidential candidate being able to raise more money in an hour at a thousand dollar-a -plate fundraiser than all the folks in the kitchen washing the dishes will make all year does not escape the hood.

This is why many of us choose to spend time relaxing at the crib eating Oodles of Noodles and watching videos on BET instead of going to the polls on election day.

While many of the middle class will start hyperventilating at the thought of black folks not voting and start yelling,

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