It’s Black History Month.

But for Jesse Jackson and his civil rights industry buddies, it’s just
business as usual. Rather than celebrating black Americans’ historical
contributions, they’re using the occasion to promote their own
hysterical agendas, in their usual tacky way.

To “honor” BHM, Jackson and NAACP President Kweisi Mfume spoke at the
St. Sabina Church on Chicago’s south side, Sunday. But not a single
black contribution — there are many — was mentioned. Instead, according to
the Chicago Sun-Times, Jackson “ripped President Bush” and his plan for
government-funded social services provided by faith-based institutions
and called for slavery reparations.

Jackson has apparently forgotten that he and his organizations have,
indeed, already received multiple slavery reparations, in the form of
corporate shakedowns of money and lucrative franchises and
distributorships for his family and cronies. He should give those
“reparations” to those who really need it, but his sons, owners of a
beer distributorship he extorted from Anheuser-Busch, refuse to disclose
the number of black employees.

As for faith-based funds, Jackson, a complete hypocrite, already is one
of the largest beneficiaries of that prospective program, as a religious
figure receiving millions in government funds to provide social
services. The only difference is that he’s never had to account for the
funds, while getting rich and paying off his latest lover. Perhaps, in
Jackson’s case, they should be called “blind-faith-based programs.”

Mfume attacked school vouchers and President Bush’s relationship with
the NAACP. “Bush came to our convention, and you know we haven’t seen
him since then. I assume that whenever he gets around to reaching out,
he will.”

Reaching out? Even though Bush delivered an unduly kowtowing speech at
an NAACP convention during his campaign, blacks gave Bush just 7-8 percent of
the vote, their lowest nod to a Republican Presidential candidate since
Barry Goldwater in the 1960s. Regardless, Bush — like a jilted lover with
a fatal attraction — has reached out beyond belief, naming many blacks to
prominent administration posts, including Secretary of State Colin
Powell, National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice, Education Secretary
Roderick Paige and FCC Chairman Michael Powell. And Bush virtually
dropped the Republicans’ winningest issue, opposition to affirmative
action — politically unwise, since most Americans consistently oppose it
as reverse racism. And in the utmost chutzpah, Mfume attacks
vouchers — the best way to reach out to Blacks, providing them increased
educational opportunities.

It is Jackson and Mfume that should reach out. And thank their lucky
stars that they’ve reaped the spoils of victory from Bush, despite
strongly supporting his losing contender.

In their black history sermons, there wasn’t one iota of black history.
Ditto for their websites, which urge opposition to vouchers and the past
Ashcroft and Chavez nominations, but contain nothing on black cowboys,
for example, like Bass Reeves, Britton Johnson and Nat Love, a.k.a.
“Deadwood Dick,” who helped conquer the old West.

But Jackson and Mfume aren’t really interested in that — in helping
minorities feel good about themselves and their great contributions to
our nation’s history. While that’s the purpose of BHM, their purpose —
making blacks feel like victims and losers — runs contrary.

In 1926, Carter G. Woodson originally created what is now BHM as “Negro
History Week,” choosing February, birth month of his heroes, Abraham
Lincoln and Frederick Douglass. According to black writer Akilah
Monifah, a left-wing commentator, and historian John Hope Franklin,
Woodson’s intent was to recognize the importance of black history to
America and have it become “an integral part of American history.”

But Jackson’s and Mfume’s interests collide with having proud
achievements of blacks become mainstream American history. It would
serve as a point of pride, uniting black Americans with whites in the
commonality of their contributions to building America. Instead, they
focus on slavery, much like I object, as a Jewish American, to American
Jewish leaders’ incorrect focus on the Holocaust, as a central part of
my people’s history. While both were abominable, tragic, significant
events in our respective histories, they are not our main achievement,
serving to divide and separate for the express profit of the civil
rights industries that have arisen from them. Why not focus on the

Did you know, for instance, that blacks were among the founding fathers
of several western cities, including Los Angeles? That Maria Rita
Valdez, a black, owned Rancho Rodeo Las Aguas, now Beverly Hills? That
William Alexander Leidesdorff, introduced the first steamboat, hotel,
and public school to San Francisco? Or that Bose Ikard helped blaze
the Goodnight-Loving Trail that led out West from Texas?

Are you aware that York, Lewis and Clark’s slave and guide, was instrumental to their
famous expedition? That black businessmen Barney Ford and Henry O.
Wagoner were instrumental to founding and developing Colorado, according
to 1895’s “History of the State of Colorado”?

Most people don’t know of George Washington Bush, who helped the U.S. stake claims to the Oregon Territory by settling Puget Sound. Or about Congressional Medals of Honor earned by the brave all-black Buffalo Soldiers and the Ninth Cavalry, which rescued late General Custer’s 7th Cavalry trapped by Sitting Bull’s Sioux Indians.

And, contrary to the victim shakedown mentality of Jackson and Mfume,
these blacks achieved and built businesses without affirmative action,
without government handouts. And they were much worse off, in the midst
of slavery or right after, with Jim Crow laws. Maybe that’s why Jackson
and Mfume don’t want blacks to know about it.

“Knowledge of a proud past will set the stage for a bright future for
African-American and … all Americans,” says Charles A. Green,
founder of the Old Wild West African-American Hall of Fame. But as late
Detroit Mayor Coleman Young observed, “As black people we don’t
appreciate our history. We don’t even know our history.”

Just the way Jackson and Mfume like it.

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