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Do you think George W. Bush does - or does not - care about black people?

Mark1031

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Was Kanye West Right?

By Dan Froomkin
Special to washingtonpost.com
Tuesday, September 13, 2005; 12:06 PM



Rap star Kanye West's seemingly radical off-script assertion two weeks ago during a Hurricane Katrina telethon that "George Bush doesn't care about black people" has become a full-blown topic of public policy debate.

A slew of recent polls have found that large majorities of blacks believe that the federal response to Hurricane Katrina would have been considerably speedier had those trapped in New Orleans been rich and white, and that the slow response was an indication of continuing racial inequity in this country. Large majorities of whites disagree.

Most of the press coverage of these poll results has concentrated on the vast racial divide they expose. But that's not necessarily the biggest story.

The latest Gallup cuts to the chase and asks: "Do you think George W. Bush does - or does not - care about black people?"

Among blacks, 21 percent say he does and 72 percent say he doesn't.

Among whites, 67 percent say he does and 26 percent say he doesn't.

Overall, 62 percent say he does and 31 percent say he doesn't.

Obviously, that's a pretty dramatic rift. But consider the absolute numbers: Three out of four blacks, one out of four whites, and one out of three people across the country regardless of race actually believe that President Bush doesn't care about black people.

Sorry, but the question: "Does the president of the United State care about black people" should be a no-brainer. Of course he does should be the overwhelmingly common answer.

Here's a question for Washington's punditocracy: What percentage of people believing that the president doesn't care about black people should be considered alarming?

Bush and the White House are trying urgently to refute this belief with imagery from Bush's three (and soon to be four) trips to the region.

But at his morning photo-op yesterday, his first comments on the issue were far from comprehensive.

"Q Sir, what do you make of some of the comments that have been made by quite a number of people that there was a racial component to some of the people that were left behind and left without help?

"THE PRESIDENT: My attitude is this: The storm didn't discriminate, and neither will the recovery effort. When those Coast Guard choppers, many of whom were first on the scene, were pulling people off roofs, they didn't check the color of a person's skin. They wanted to save lives."

One could argue, of course, that the storm disproportionately impacted those who were left, abandoned by the government, in its path -- most of whom were black and poor. And while no one suggests that chopper pilots were racially selective about who they rescued, the real question is what took the choppers and the other rescuers so long? Why weren't there more of them?

Lisa de Moraes reported on West's criticism in The Washington Post on September 3.

Attack and Defense

Among Bush's leading critics, of course, is Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean, who told Wolf Blitzer on CNN last week: "I do not think that this president cares about everybody in America. . . .

"I'm not disputing the fact the president is a nice man, and maybe he's compassionate in his personal life. The truth is that Americans have suffered deeply under this presidency, 80 percent of Americans -- and that black people, Hispanic people, and poor people and old people have suffered disproportionately."

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, the highest-ranking African American in Bush's government, defended Bush on racial issues yesterday in an interview at the New York Times.

Steven R. Weisman has the story and here is the transcript .

"Look, I find it very strange to think that people would think the President of the United States would sit deciding who ought to be helped on the basis of color, most especially this President," Rice said. "It's just -- it's (a) not true and it's (b) poisonous that somebody would say that. And I hope that people would be challenged on the assumption if they're going to say it. Now, what evidence is there that this is the case? Why would you say such a thing? What makes you think so? . . .

"f you look at how he did among black voters in the state that he was governor, you have a very different picture. And that says to me that, in that case, familiarity has given you a very different picture of this President and his concerns about blacks. But I know President Bush and he talks about issues of race because he -- because the kind of lack of opportunity that still afflicts -- that afflicts a lot of poor people but still afflicts disproportionately blacks as -- and poor, is something that he is concerned about."


http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/blog/2005/09/13/BL2005091300884.html


Wow 31% in gallup poll say he doesn’t. What say you? What evidence is there that he does other than the assumption that a modern well educated person would? I don’t think he is an overt racist but what has he done that would indicate support for any of the political concerns of African Americans? They do not vote for him. They are in the minority anyway, the Republican party has admitted to using race to gain white votes. Condi and Colin are not a policy on racial issues but I would say window dressing to hide the ugly truth that opposition to African American concerns is a net vote getter for Republicans.
 
I do not think Bush cares about 'poor' black people. Basically Bush is opposed to wealth redistribution, he is not concerned with poor black people as much as they won't vote for him, but poor white nationalist christians do vote for him, so he aims some policies at them in expense of poor black needs.

It's not so much as he dislikes them, more that they don't fit with his tax-cutting, wealfare reducing agenda.
 
I think these allegations are absurd.

Realistically, no matter who was affected by a large-scale disaster such as Hurricane Katrina, the federal government would find a way to screw up the relief effort.

The large, inefficient, federal government does not discriminate when it can screw something up.

No matter who the chief executive is.
 
Bush doesn't care for blacks, he cares for everyone.

But this thread does illustrate how ignorant some people are about the Republicans and specifically George Bush.
 
I agree with irish. New orleans could have been filled with rich white people when the hurricane hit, and the government would still have cocked it up. Was bush intentionally leaving the city to drown because he doesnt like black people? No, of course not. I think he dislikes poor people more because not as many will vote republican, especially in such a vibrant and diverse city like NO.
 
Irish Caesar said:
I think these allegations are absurd.

Why? Not the Hurricane issue but what has George Bush done with regard to any issue of importance to AAs? What evidence is there that he cares about poor black people in this country?
 
As far as compassion goes, I haven't seen any evidence to indicate that he cares any less about black people than white, yellow, brown, or green people.

As far as policy goes, the fact that he really can't be nice enough to black people as a voting block to get any significant percentage of votes from them could possibly influence him.

But "Does he care about black people?" is a pretty useless question, IMHO.
 
Like I said, it's not that he doesn't care about black people, it's just that poor 'black' needs and his policies do not match.
 
Bush doesn't cares for anyone.
Honour to the black poeple of Ner Orleans
 
Sure Bush cares for Blacks.






As long as they have money. Laura's comments on after Katrina are more than enough to show how callous these people are towards the poor.
 
Mark1031 said:
Not the Hurricane issue but what has George Bush done with regard to any issue of importance to AAs?

What sort of issue? Affirmative action? This is very unpopular in Republican circles. President Bush (or any other Republican politician) would not be likely to support it, no matter their opinions on people of other races. I, and many others, most likely the President included, think that the affirmative action system is racist and unfair.

A more "progressive" income tax system? Once again, the President and the Republican Party would more likely support a flat tax. This isn't race-motivated.

More entitlement programs? Once again, this isn't a race issue. American conservatives think that this isn't the government's responsibility.

I'm not sure what sorts of issues are important to African Americans specifically that do not pertain to Americans in general, but if you give me some specifics, I can comment on those.
 
Don't you think this is kinda a stupid question? Thinking Bush doesn't care about any group of people based on their skin color is absurd and stupid.
 
Elrohir said:
Don't you think this is kinda a stupid question? Thinking Bush doesn't care about any group of people based on their skin color is absurd and stupid.
When 'black' people see wealfare programmes that help them being cut and rich 'white' people getting tax breaks it would be no surprise for them to think Buish doesn't care about 'em.
 
ComradeDavo said:
When 'black' people see wealfare programmes that help them being cut and rich 'white' people getting tax breaks it would be no surprise for them to think Buish doesn't care about 'em.

Under the Bush administration $100 billion a year has been added to povery entitlement programs. If that's cutting programs and giving money to rich 'white' people, then I'd hate to see what you propose that involves "increasing" welfare.

Let's not end up like France. (Sorry Marla) A welfare state in the US isn't going to work, and would bring the US (And a good portion of the world economy) down for our trouble.
 
Bush has a bizarre and questionable agenda for sure, but I've not seen any real indication that race is a factor for him. To be fair and honest, I think that such allegations are something of an extrapolation of the facts.
 
I don't care what Kanye West says to sell more records. Bush is a bad president, that was established the first day he came to office.
 
Elrohir said:
Under the Bush administration $100 billion a year has been added to povery entitlement programs. If that's cutting programs and giving money to rich 'white' people, then I'd hate to see what you propose that involves "increasing" welfare.

Let's not end up like France. (Sorry Marla) A welfare state in the US isn't going to work, and would bring the US (And a good portion of the world economy) down for our trouble.
A wealfare state could work especially well in the USA, given it's resources and wealth! Bascially, you think that because your country is so conservative and prejudeced against socialism and wealth redistribution. Really if the rich payed a bit more tax and this was used to sort out your education system and to help people get onto the job ladder you could stimulate your economy in a way that will ensure that poverty is reduced and people as a whole make more money! Basically Conservative America thinks the way to stimulate it's economy are tax cuts for the wealthy, but this serves nothing more than to widen the gap between rich and poor. As alot of poor people are black, a dissproportionate amount in fact, this leads them to teh impression that Bush does not care about them.

As for cutting programmes, well a quick google search immediately leads to me to find - http://www.guardian.co.uk/usa/story/0,12271,1407400,00.html
In an attempt to keep government spending under control at a time of record deficits, Mr Bush's proposals to Congress will include cuts in public housing subsidies, in health projects aimed at diseases related to poverty, and in food stamps, which help America's poorest buy groceries.
 
I'll take Fox News over the Gaurdian any day. ;)

Massive neglect? Let's take a look at that bit of overstatement. Halfway through President Clinton's tenure in office in 1996, the poverty rate was 13.7 percent. Halfway through President Bush's tenure, the rate is 12.7 percent, a full point lower.

In 1996, the Clinton budget allotted $191 billion for poverty entitlements. That was 12.2 percent of the budget and a whopping amount of money. That's why Bill Clinton (search) was called the first black president by some.

However, the Bush 2006 budget allots a record shattering $368 billion for poverty entitlements, 14.6 percent of the entire budget, a huge increase over Clinton's spending on poverty entitlements.
 
Bush does not care about middle class whites, poor blacks, the elderly, etc. Bush only cares about people in a similar income bracket to his own.
 
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