Sonnie Johnson to GOP: Stop ‘talking down to black America’, focus on policies to help ‘fix the issues’

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Sonnie Johnson, a black conservative radio show host, believes Republicans sanctimoniously talk down to, berate and demean black people instead of actually working with them to resolve the issues that plague their communities.

Speaking on Fox News’ “Fox News Primetime” this Friday, the heterodox conservative said that she wasn’t there to kiss up to either Republicans or Democrats.

“We are not going to stick to the normal paradigm that is set, and that is to have one side that says ‘there is no racism, it doesn’t exist, you are playing victim,’ and then to have the other side that is completely in pure identity politics based on no substance or no policy,” she said.

She added that she was there to uplift her own community, but that neither Democrats nor Republicans seemed to share her goal.

Listen:

 

“The thing with Democrats is they are never going to talk about this issue. Because if they do, they will have to be held accountable for what they have done to our communities [for] sixty, seventy, eighty, ninety, one hundred years in some areas. They will have to be held accountable. They are not going to put themselves in a position where they have to be held accountable,” she said.

Likewise, she continued, Republicans have allegedly been just as stubbornly dedicated to avoiding “this issue.”

“I brought this message seven years ago to Republicans, to conservatives. We can talk about this, we can go out there, we can win people, we can win hearts and minds. I was told to sit down, to shut up,” she claimed.

“I was told that calling black people slaves on a plantation was more beneficial than actually offering them policy that fixes the issues that plague them under these Democratic-controlled cities. I was told it was not an important conversation. I was told that our voice had no weight and constantly, over and over again, these messengers who choose to berate and belittle black Americans were constantly put to the forefront.”

White Republicans do have a tendency of arguing that Democrats are trying to trap black people in a “plantation.” But in fairness to them, plenty of black conservatives have posited the same argument:

“So I am very sick of hearing ‘where are the people that want to have these conversations about black on black crime,’ ‘where are the people that want to talk about the things that are going on?’ We are right here!” Johnson continued.

“We have been bringing these conversations to the right for years. You never want to have these conversations with us until this moment arises. So please, they can save the sanctimonious stuff, and let’s actually get the policy that can fix the issues in these areas.”

It’s not clear though that Republican politicians have much leverage on these issues given that black people overwhelmingly vote for Democrat politicians to lead them on the local and state level. Suffice it to say, a Republican politician from the red state of Florida can’t go to Detroit, Michigan, and lay out policy solutions.

When asked by Fox News host Lawrence Jones to specify a solution, Johnson suggested more Second Amendment/firearms training.

“It is your right as an American citizen to be armed, but it is also a responsibility. With that responsibility comes certain knowledge and certain training. Instead of approaching it from that situation, where we are teaching young boys not only is it your right but it is also your responsibility and the weight that comes with that

The GOP-aligned National Rifle Association does boast special programs for children, though no Republican politician can force black parents to allow their children to participate in these programs.

Johnson continued by arguing that this is why it’s important that voices like those of Maj Toure, the founder of Black Guns Matter, be amplified by Republicans.

“He goes in and he teaches gun safety. He goes in and he teaches the laws and regulations at the local area. He also teaches de-escalation and ways to solve problems without it resorting in violence. So the work is being done,” she said.

She then concluded with one final bit of criticism aimed at Republicans.

“It would be really, really nice if people on the right recognized that instead of continuously talking down to black America,” she said.

During an appearance at CPAC 2019, Toure made similar points, arguing that Republicans need to put more boots in the ground in urban areas to educate minorities about conservative principles.

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Vivek Saxena

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