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More Billionaires on Stage than Black Candidates. So?
Try to contain your enthusiasm, but it’s that time again, time for yet another Democratic presidential debate. Number six. This one will be this week in Los Angeles. And Cory Booker isn’t happy.
“There are more billionaires than black people who’ve made the December debate stage — that’s a problem.”
This raises a question: Why is it a problem?
Sure, it’s a problem for Cory Booker, since he didn’t qualify to be on stage. But why is it a problem for anybody else?
The implication, of course, is that racism is at work here – the left’s go-to response for more than a few problems, some real, some only imagined.
We know that a lot of Democrats have long believed that Republicans in general are racists (or at least condone it) and that everybody who voted for Donald Trump in particular definitely is a racist. But are we now supposed to believe that white liberal Democrats who have rejected Cory Booker and Kamala Harris, are racists, too? And what about black Democrats -- are they racists because they haven’t embraced black candidates?
I guess it doesn’t occur to Cory Booker, and others of a like mind, that Democratic voters, expressing their preferences at this point in opinion polls, might not especially like Cory Booker or Kamala Harris – not because they’re black – but because of a hundred other reasons.
It’s no surprise that some folks on the left aren’t content with equal opportunity … they expect equal results. It’s not good enough that just about anybody can run for president. The system only works when minority candidates are on stage late in the game.
So why tiptoe around the subject? Why don’t Democrats simply establish party rules that mandate that a certain number of candidates who are not white must be on stage at all Democratic debates? And while they’re at it, why not put something in writing that requires the party to put a person of color on the national ticket?
Democrats will probably do just that anyway in 2020, but why take any chances?
That way, people like Cory Booker won’t have to leave the decision as to who’s on stage and who isn’t to those pesky Democratic voters – people who apparently can’t be counted on to make sure there’s “proper” representation at the debates and on the national ticket.
By the way, Julian Castro isn’t happy either. “What we’re staring at is a DNC debate stage with no people of color on it,” Castro recently said. “That does not reflect the diversity of our party or our country. We need to do better than that.” (For the record, Andrew Yang has qualified for the debate.)
Democrats: Establish the quota I propose and get it over with.
As for their concerns over the supposed lack of diversity, consider this.
The top four candidates right now are Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, Pete Buttigieg, and Elizabeth Warren. And as Jonah Goldberg tells us in National Review, “Biden would be only the second Catholic president. Sanders would be the first Jewish president and the first socialist one. Buttigieg would be the first openly gay (and youngest) president. Warren would be the first female president (and if her DNA test had gone another way, the first Native American one).”
That sounds pretty diverse to me – except they’re all white, which means they’re not diverse enough, at least for progressive Democrats.
In October of this year, the New York Times reported that, “White liberals … are thinking more explicitly about race than they did even a decade ago, according to new research and polling. In one survey, an overwhelming majority said that racial discrimination affects the lives of black people. They embrace terms like ‘structural racism’ and ‘white privilege.’"
This, if you haven't already guessed, is Donald Trump's fault, either directly or otherwise. The Times' story runs under the headline, "How 'White Guilt' in the Age of Trump Shapes the Democratic Primary."
But the president should consider himself lucky – lucky that Nancy Pelosi and her gang didn’t include racism in their articles of impeachment.
But back to the question I asked at the top of this column: Why is it a problem that there will be more billionaires on the debate stage in Los Angeles this week than black people? The answer may be obvious to Cory Booker, but it’s not to me.
And I suspect I’m not alone.