Black Leaders Embarrass and Sell Us Out Again

By Rev. Bill Owens Published on February 2, 2018

There have been countless takeaways on President Trump’s State of the Union address, and the reaction of many Democrats in Congress. At a few days’ remove, I’ll admit my own reaction. I’m embarrassed. Not by the president, but by our so-called black leaders’ behavior in public, on television, before the nation.

As a proud black American, who remembers the days of Jim Crow and who worked in the Civil Rights movement, I’m also saddened.

Back when Southern sheriffs would beat black people up for trying to vote, or throw out their ballots, could we ever have imagined this:

A president who stands before the country and focuses on the economic condition of African-Americans. He points out that it is getting better. That tens of thousands more black Americans have jobs than they did a year before. He promises to help us, by protecting our job opportunities from being undercut by illegal workers.

Democrats have found a new set of clients, and they’re taking us for granted.

What’s more, there aren’t just one or two, but almost four dozen black members of Congress. They’re sitting there in the audience looking up at him.

We couldn’t have dreamed of something like this, back when I was marching and training for non-violent resistance with Dr. King’s organizers.

Leading Us Nowhere

You want to know what else we couldn’t have imagined? That most of those black congressmen and women would be staring back up at the president, stony-faced and angry. They wouldn’t applaud the American flag — the flag our ancestors cheered when it replaced the rebel banners of the slave-owners. They wouldn’t applaud the national anthem, or the value of American citizenship. 

And they wouldn’t even celebrate good economic news.

That is the kind of progress that shouldn’t be dismissed just because it came under a President you didn’t vote for. We should be able to appreciate good news, and not taint it with partisanship. Does anyone remember Republicans doing the same, when President Obama announced some good news? No, of course not. Even if they thought he was taking credit for something he didn’t do, they did the patriotic thing: They applauded the fact that things were going well for their fellow citizens. That’s common courtesy, and seeing our “leaders” violate that was a terrible example for every black child in America. I hope they weren’t watching.

Making a Mockery of Our Hard-Won Citizenship

Black people my age remember how hard it was to claim our rights as citizens. It took a full hundred years after the 14th Amendment, hard as that is to believe. Who would have thought that within just a few decades of gaining that precious right, our leaders would be scoffing at it? That they’d be willing to shut down the government not once but likely twice (just wait), to hand that citizenship out to millions of people who never earned it? Whose parents had just stolen it for them? That our leaders would fight to keep on importing more and more foreign workers, handing them that citizenship, and taking away the jobs our sons and daughters needed, to get a start in life?

But that is what the Congressional Black Caucus has come to. Its members have sold themselves, lock, stock, and barrel, to the Democratic Party. They have no leverage left. They are completely taken for granted. You know how I know that? When was the last time that party did something as drastic as shutting down the government on behalf of black Americans? What has that party done for us in the past 30 years, apart from expanding on welfare programs that lock us in poverty? And now, throw open the borders, so strangers can take our place?

Replacing Us with Imports

Whatever you think of affirmative action, at least its intent was to right an historic wrong. How is it, then, that immigrants who came here voluntarily — sometimes against our nation’s will, breaking its laws — can benefit from a program designed to make up for Jim Crow aimed at black folks? Once again, the Democrats have found a new set of clients, and they’re taking us for granted. We’re locked down, stuck in place. They don’t need to bid for our votes. Our leaders insist that they’ve got us. They can worry about importing one million or ten million new votes from other countries. And that helps black Americans how, exactly? I’ve yet to figure that out.

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Now let’s set race aside. As a minister and a Christian, I’m baffled by the indifference that so many putative Christians show toward crucial accomplishments of Trump’s past year in office. We may not all agree with the President on every issue, but it is undeniable that the past year has seen great strides for religious freedom, pro-life and pro-family issues, and economic independence. As founder and president of the Coalition of African-American Pastors, I’m working with hundreds of pastors to place the black church alongside the white church — on the front lines of fighting for Gospel values, unborn life, and equal freedom for every citizen. I wish that the congressmen who purport to represent us would remember those issues too.

I cannot be the only one who was moved by the story of the police officer who helped a pregnant addict by promising to adopt her unborn child.

Wake Up and Smell the Subterfuge

Does it advance our community for self-styled black leaders to shrug at a story like that? To roll their eyes at patriotism? To troop along obediently as the Democratic party dilutes our influence and trades away our jobs, all to gain another compliant voting bloc in the form of millions of immigrants?

It’s time for black Americans to wake up and smell the subterfuge. Our citizenship, our faith, our jobs and our self-respect are all in danger. For all his flaws, President Trump is trying to stick up for those things, on behalf of every American — us included. If we don’t regain our political independence, we’re just going to get shoved aside. Again. 

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  • Paul

    “That’s common courtesy, and seeing our “leaders” violate that was a terrible example for every black child in America. I hope they weren’t watching.”

    I understand this sentiment but I hope more kids of all stripes pay attention regardless of the poor example politicians set, whether they are D or R. As far as examples go, more importantly is whether or not there are adults in the childs life that set good examples. There will allways be bad examples, whether in politics, entertainment, business, school or the church. Hoping kids never see them is an unrealistic expectation and unviable strategy.

    Otherwise this article is fabulous, and we need to see more like it.

  • RH

    Thanks, Pastor Owens. Reading this article brings tears to my eyes. Thank you for the battle you engaged in during the civil rights movement, and for continuing to stand strong against the subterfuge and ugliness on full display at the SOTU address. It really was disheartening and embarrassing. May God richly bless you as you continue “working with hundreds of other pastors to place the black church alongside the white church – on the front lines of fighting for Gospel values, unborn life, and equal freedom for every citizen”!

  • Betty Lou Schwartz

    Wonderfully said.

  • Ben Willard

    We cannot fix the past. But, certain parties want U.S. to ‘pay’ for it. Even if we are not responsible. Holding onto it only weighs U.S. down. We are only responsible for today. Attempting to bring grace as salt and light. Salt stings and light exposes. The devil is in the details. Though, God is in the past, present, and future.

  • Shirley Sims

    Thank you I am very happy to know I am not the only one who is reaching out in the community to educate our people on the betrayal of our Black leaders to their own communities.

  • Superb. I wish there were 1000 – nay, 10,000 – more like you. What I continually see the Democrat Party engaged in is, to my mind, beyond belief, and indeed, godless and unpatriotic.

  • Charles Burge

    I see an opportunity here, for conservatives to persuade large numbers of black people that conservatives policies are better for them. Will the Republican party be up to the task? Sadly, I’m not very confident about that.

  • Concerned Christian

    Things that would be cool to see:

    1. A black person on Stream write an article not criticizing black people.

    2. Conservatives who were offended when Joe Wilson called Barack Obama a liar during his SOTU speech?

    3. The number of Black Caucus members who were there when Wilson shouted his comment?

    4. The amount of money Joe Wilson made off of that comment?

    5. If, “As a proud black American, who remembers the days of Jim Crow and who worked in the Civil Rights movement, I’m also saddened.”, this were true the night of Obama’s speech as well?

    • KC

      I was offended when the incident happened calling President Obama a liar during the SOTU. We respect the office, we may not agree with everything the man may do or say, but he is our president.

    • Andrew Mason

      Replied earlier but seems like my reply vanished so this’ll be somewhat abridged.

      1. Have you never read Ken Blackwell’s articles here? Seems like you don’t read articles by Black authors who don’t criticise Black people.

      2. Seems like Republicans got Wilson to apologise for his breach in decorum.

      3. There were something like 44 members at the time – all Democrats. It’s likely most were in attendance.

      4. Personally or campaign donations? His Democrat rival also benefited from increased donations.

      5. Because Obama was selling out the Black electorate, or because someone interrupted the speech of a Black president?

      • Concerned Christian

        1. Here’s a book from Ken Blackwell that makes my point:

        Ending Welfare; The Blueprint: Obama’s Plan to Subvert the Constitution and Build an Imperial Presidency

        Point me to a Ken Blackwell’s article that makes yours?

        Even if you can find one, I couldn’t, let’s include Walter Williams & Bill Owens.

        2. wow, that was mighty big of them.

        3. yeah, imagine how they felt listing to trump flat out lie over and over again! yet, never did they act like Joe Wilson.

        4. Yes, he was the bad guy, not the guy that shouted

        5. yes, Obama’s greatest sin, like all black men who conservatives don’t like, is the selling out of the black electorate. The same applies to women that conservative don’t like. They are clearly selling out women.

        • Andrew Mason

          You asked for an article written by a Black guy that wasn’t criticising Blacks. The fact he’s written a book is irrelevant. Here’s an assortment of articles on Stream:
          *Scrapping the Bail System is a Bad Idea
          *Liberate Iran: Demand Release of Detained Protesters
          *Christopher Columbus: Without Him, America and His Critics Wouldn’t Exist
          *The Supreme Court Has A Chance to Defend Property and Patent Rights

          Lie? Or simply tell a truth they dispute?

          Oh I never said it was his greatest sin. He didn’t do them any favours though. As for women Conservatives don’t like selling out women, is that any different to the Liberal view? Any Conservative woman, especially a successful one, is a traitor to her gender who can be ignored and or ridiculed by the Left.

          • Concerned Christian

            I thought i was clear but apparently I was not. If a black writer on stream, writes an article that mentions blacks, it is in a negative context. If he never mentions blacks, then for Stream I will give him credit that by not mentioning blacks at all, he did something positive.

            Name a black democrat or female democrat that you respect?

            Black Republican
            Tim Scott & Condoleezza Rice
            I think both have represented their beliefs with dignity and class. I don’t agree with their politics but I don’t have to. I don’t think you’re a monster because we don’t see eye to eye.

            So again, name a black democrat or female democrat that you respect? Not one that you agree with politically but one that you just respect?

          • Andrew Mason

            Wouldn’t it be fair to say that when any particular segment of society is mentioned it’s usually in a negative context? If the story is positive then it’s American general, isn’t it?

            I couldn’t name a Black politician off the top of my head, and the only one that springs to mind – that Californian whiner with a hate on for Trump, clearly isn’t a favourable impression. By the same token however I couldn’t name many non-Black politicians either. Cruz, McCain, perhaps one or 2 others and that’s about it. The fact those handful of names have stuck in my head doesn’t mean I respect them all.

          • Concerned Christian

            “Wouldn’t it be fair to say that when any particular segment of society is mentioned it’s usually in a negative context?”

            Well, that’s true for everyone but whites. For instance, poor whites are referred to as “working class whites”. There is no equivalent term for inner cities blacks or blacks in general. I don’t remember the last time I heard a positive generalized reference to anyone except whites. Can you?

            “I couldn’t name a Black politician off the top of my head, and the only one that springs to mind – that Californian whiner with a hate on for Trump,”

            Do you personally know any non-whites that disagree with your views that you have respect for?

          • Andrew Mason

            Whites comprise almost 80% of Americans so talking about subgroups makes sense. When talking of Chinese would you expect China to talk about the Han, or working class Han for instance? In India would you expect Hindi speakers to be identified uniquely? To be fair native speakers comprise barely 40% so the parallel is poor, but hopefully you get the idea.

            Pretty sure I’ve heard positive references to Asians – possibly Oriental rather than subcontinent or generic. It’s likely to have been in an academic context, though could have been cultural. That help?

            Are you talking politically or generally or …? And by personally I’m presuming you mean RL relationship as opposed to read about X on the internet, watched Y on TV etc.

          • Concerned Christian

            Yes a RL relationship? Someone that disagrees with your views?

          • Andrew Mason

            Yes I’ve White friends whose political views diverge significantly from my own. I can’t comment on the political views of my non-White friends since I either don’t recall them having expressed any, or whatever they’ve expressed hasn’t been particularly memorable. Since politics has only come up with a few friends you probably don’t want to read too much into that.

          • Concerned Christian

            my point is that there’s a lot negative information that comes from the mouth of trump about non-whites. From my perspective, if you don’t talk to anyone from the races he trounces, then you’re getting a one sided biased view.

            Non-whites interact with whites far more than whites interact with non-whites. If we hear something negative about whites we can filter that through the people we actually know. It would be easy for non-whites to think all trump supporters are racist. But, we can’t because we know plenty of whites who voted for Trump who we would not fit into that category.

            So, if you never hear from the mouth of a non-white democrat, that you’ve developed some type of relationship with, even if it’s just work, then I would think it’s tough to really understand that perspective.

          • Andrew Mason

            Ah but doesn’t that assume Trump is my prime source of info rather than a variety of (non-Trump) media sources?

            Actually non-Whites interacting with Whites more than Whites interact with non-Whites is only true in White nations – Europe, North America, Russia, or Oceania, and even then not true for every area. Live in a different region and you can rarely see or interact with Whites.

            You’re right I don’t know any Black Democrats and in many ways I probably don’t understand the perspective, but by the same token so much of what I see demonstrates that side of the debate doesn’t understand or want to understand other views either. To be fair it’s the more extreme elements that get the coverage but if that’s where the legislation and action is …

    • B-Real

      Obama WAS lying.

      • Concerned Christian

        well we can argue about whether or not Obama lied. But we certainly can’t argue that trump is a serial liar the likes that the american presidency has never seen:

        “Thank you for all of the nice compliments and reviews on the State of the Union speech,” he tweeted. “45.6 million people watched, the highest number in history.”

        Is there anything that this man will not lie about?

        • B-Real

          I look forward to you being pissy for seven more years.

          • Concerned Christian

            what is this “pissy” you’re referring to?

        • If you are not there at an event then your only recourse is to depend on those who claim they were. The only way to determine the dependability of those claimants is to personally investigate their claims. The people spouting off in the media about our President being a liar have, themselves, been caught in innumerable lies. They, therefore, are NOT a dependable source. And if you look into it carefully, laying the reports of those undependable claimants aside, then our President’s supposed “lies” vanish like a vapor on a windy day.

          You need to be more critical of your “sources” instead of their victims.

          • Concerned Christian

            1. DT is my source since he has looked directly into the camera and lied to me on a consistent basis.

            2. For the Russia investigation, out of his own mouth, he stated that there were no contacts between anyone in his administration and the Russians. Clearly a lie.

            3. He told me that Mexico would build the wall, now he’s demanding that congress give him 25B of our money to pay for it.

            4. He just lied about the viewership of the SOTU.

            5. I don’t think he a serial liar because of information filtered through the media, I think he’s a serial liar because he tells me what he is on a weekly basis.

            6. Trump is the most dependable source that you could have!

          • 1. What independent corroborative evidence? Your personal opinion is not valid as independent corroborative evidence.

            2. No, what he has consistently stated is that there was no COLLUSION. There’s a difference.

            3. He has never said that they would volunteer to do so, only that they would end up paying for it, and there are several options open for that.

            4. Again, based on what independent corroborative evidence?

            5 & 6. These are opinions, not evidence.

            Try again.

          • Concerned Christian

            2. His first lie was not contacts. Then he changed it to no collusion once he was caught in the first lie.

            3. If you tell me that someone is going to pay for something.
            Then tell me to give you the money to for it.
            Then you don’t tell me that the “someone” will reimburse me.
            I’m going to think that you lied to me. As I believe you would.

            4. Here you go:


            that’s my proof. let’s see your rebuttal. Trump’s word is not good enough.

            5 & 6. Sure it is. 🙂

          • 2. They first accused him of having contact with Russians, but having contact with Russians is an absolute essential for an incoming President of the United States, so their accusation was bald-facedly wicked and false on its face and from the start. When they then changed it to collusion, he responded that there was no collusion. The year plus of fruitless digging (including violation of the rights of US citizens and of US law) has proven the accuracy of his assertion that there was no collusion. That’s why they, then, started in on obstruction, because there was no evidence of collusion. Now they’re finding there is no evidence of obstruction, either; even though they’re doing their level best to trick and egg him into it, it is not there.

            3. You problem, here, is that he never once said that Mexico would pay for it willingly and up front, only that they would pay for it. So your complaint is without value.

            4. You see NPR as a balanced and trustworthy source? My God! No wonder you’re so twisted up in your head.

          • Concerned Christian

            2. Here you go:

            June 3rd – Russians email trump jr: with information that:

            “The documents “would incriminate Hillary and her dealings with Russia”

            Trump Jr. email response – “If it’s what you say I love it especially later in the summer.”

            June 7th – Trump promises more dirt on Hillary which he will release during a major speech the following Monday, June 12th.

            June 9th Trump Jr. meets with the Russians

            Afterwards, no grand announcement by Trump. Now the meeting was about adoption.

            Trump either lied about having dirt or didn’t get the information he thought he would get from the Russians which would prove collusion.

            Which one was it?

            3. Until he tells me how, I will assume that he will do to me the same thing that has caused him to be sued over 3500 times. Take my money and never provide the services promised.

            4. I listed NPR and I could have listed a hundred more. Here’s one from Fox News research:


            Can you list ONE? Can you substantiate your claim?

          • 2. The Russians involved, there, lied both about who they were representing and about the subject of the meeting, and you want to blame that on Trump? Sorry, no sale.
            3. Assuming someone is lying does not mean they were lying, only that you are making an assumption.
            4. There are (at least) 2 problems with your assessment. First, where is the evidence that he made the claim  you ascribe to him (all I’ve seen is the number that was shown)? Second would be the accuracy of HIS sources. If he is simply repeating something he was told, that can hardly be his deception.

          • Concerned Christian

            #2 – FACT


            #3 – FACT

            “Assuming someone is lying does not mean they were lying”

            When the person has a history of lying, it means that I wouldn’t loan them a penny.

            #4 – “here is the evidence” – FACT

            Donald Trump Tweet
            “Thank you for all of the nice compliments and reviews on the State of the Union speech. 45.6 million people watched, “the highest number in history”. @FoxNews beat every other Network, for the first time ever, with 11.7 million people tuning in. Delivered from the heart!”

            #4 – “accuracy of HIS sources” – FACT

            are the people around him ignorant or simply not trying?

          • 2. A fact about what? That the Russians lied about who they represented and what they wanted to talk about?
            3. I see you typing. I DON’T see evidence.
            4. Doesn’t matter. If HE is fed false information, HE is not lying.

          • Concerned Christian

            ok, you got it.

            I can add nothing further to this discussion. 🙂

    • Jan

      Concerned Christian…Pres Obama was lying….it was proven more than once in days & weeks following.

      • Concerned Christian

        “Several fact-checking organizations wrote that Wilson’s views were inaccurate because HR 3200 expressly excludes undocumented aliens from receiving government-subsidized “affordability credits”.[52][53][54]

        However, the non-partisan Congressional Research Service agreed that people would need to be lawfully present in the U.S. in order to be eligible for the credits, but noted that the bill did not bar non-citizens from buying their own health insurance coverage through the health insurance exchange.[55][56]

        The Obama administration said that, in the final bill, undocumented immigrants would not be able to participate in the Exchange.[57]”

        Here’s the difference. In order to believe Obama lied, you have to believe that he deliberately did “not bar non-citizens from buying their own health insurance coverage through the health insurance exchange”.

        Never mind the fact that you have to have a SSN in order to purchase insurance on the exchanges. This is required to verify that you are in compliance with the individual mandate. That fact in and of itself would bar an illegal immigrant from buying insurance.

        So an Obama lie is a technicality that republicans have to define as a lie.

        Luckily for democrats, that’s not an issue with trump since he’s a flat out pathological liar.

  • Blightness

    I am just baffled that Blacks still vote Democratic. What the f*** has the Democratic party ever done for black people? What has Obama done for black people as the “supposed” first black president? I

    • Deplorable ernie

      They are starting to come around and it absolutely scares the crap out of dems. I mean Trump wants to put charter schools in inner cities and the dems along with the NEA union call it pre poterus. Why? If it works to help black communities they may learn it was the republicans that helped them out.

  • Carol Gibson

    good point

  • Several good points, Sir. But there is more that needs to be done—not just by leaders, but by everyone. To save space on the page, here’s my take on it more fully presented: https://www[dot]youtube[dot]com/watch?v=6bVhk2F8FJI

    For example, when your local area has been under the control of a single party for 70 years, resulting in nearly the utter destruction of everything good and holy in that area, it’s time to change parties with your votes—and, in fact, long past time.

  • imonmyway

    All the Democrats have to offer blacks and whites alike is hatred, resistance, and total allegiance to their party leadership. It was both comical and sad to see some of the Dems instinctively start to applaud or stand in appreciation for progress, but then look around and sit back down or cease to clap because they are intimidated by Nancy, Chuck and others. I even saw a video clip where Nancy appears to look around and check to be sure her minions are toeing the line and not responding in a positive fashion. Maybe she heard someone behind her applauding and turned to give them the old evil eye! If you ask me, too many blacks and whites are willingly becoming slaves to the Democratic party which cares little or nothing for their well-being, but for their votes so that Dems can stay in power. These people should learn to think for themselves and listen to both sides of issues without the prejudice pumped into them by Democrats and their partners in crime, the liberal media.

  • Jan

    Excellent article by this pastor.
    Sad one hate-filled led party has to do this to America & to members of their party want to work for all people.

  • Thank you Rev. Jones, for your essential perspective. May God continue to bless you and your work!

  • Deplorable ernie

    For sure certain black leaders know whose greasing their palms to make sure the work racist and phony are applied daily to anything Trump and any republican black achievements. Sadly blacks have suffered more from dems and false promisses and hand outs then they did from the Civil War.
    Blacks dont get it the they are still in chains, economic chains are just as real as metal ones

  • Sydco

    Thank you for this fine insight. You are a courageous pastor indeed–I’m praying for more like you!

  • Karen McNeilly

    I was impressed by what you had to say both as a Christian and as a black man. I hope that the black communities are listening to you. I agree with and support the work you are trying to accomplish. I hope -and pray- that God will increase your voice among those you are so trying to help. I will ask Him to give them ears to hear and eyes to see, just as I do for whites with racist tendencies. Whatever the color of anyone’s skin, they are part of those that we profess to be ‘all men created equal’, and its past time that we all acted like it.

  • Twenty_Squared

    The Black Caucus version of the NFL’s kneeling knegroes.

  • Nzinga

    I appreciate this so much, I was almost breath taken by finally reading such a common-sense take on this issue. Alas, media-led political correctness, a societal ill of epidemic proportions, has been limiting and compromising people’s capacity to think and no one is excluded, talk less of the under-educated, easily influenced black community. I am glad you did not dance around the issue but chose to express it clearly, seeing it for what it is.
    One point though: I appreciate this article amounted to an expression of your frustration, however I was looking forward to a clear call for action. How exactly sir, do we kick-off the process of ‘waking up’? Because from what I see the black community are in a deep coma and I fear it will take a move of God to awaken us.

  • Richard Wallace

    yes they are the new immigrant party

  • papbm

    Thank you for these encouraging words of truth. As the grandmother of adopted Black children who are now young adults, I have been deeply concerned about how the liberal agenda is influencing them. I continue to pray your courage to speak out and publicly state the truth will open the hearts of millions and be spread far and wide. President Trump is not your enemy…he is reaching out with sincere efforts to bring restoration, hope, and independence to America’s Black citizens. As he has said, “What have you got to lose” by accepting his help?

  • gmthomas44

    NOT the “Democratic” party. The Democrat party. See what they did to Bernie Sanders.

  • jbstoner45

    Excellent article. A voice of reason. It’s sad that most blacks, refuse to open their eyes and see the big picture.

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