Rev. Al Sharpton will be in Memphis, TN to speak against consolidation…what I want to know is…WHY?
I tried to put my very ill feelings towards Mr. Sharpton to the side as I thought about his “appearance” here in the MidSouth, but it was hard to do so knowing that such bigger issues are going on in the black community that Rev. Al Sharpton could be making “appearances” at.
Sharpton was invited to Memphis by State County Municipal Employees Local 1733 to join their fight against consolidation efforts that would join Memphis and Shelby County Government. Sharpton was joined by members of the AFSCME and the National Action Network, when he spoke this morning on Beale Street in downtown Memphis asking voters to vote against consolidation.
A poll taken by Yacoubian Research shows that 36.6 percent of voters say they plan to vote for consolidation, while 36.8 percent said they are against it. Just over 26 percent said they are not sure. Also, in general Democrats favor consolidation, Republicans oppose it.
For many people of the county the biggest issue with the consolidation plan is what will they be giving up compared to what they will be gaining if the governments are consolidated.
The Shelby County Commission approved a resolution opposing consolidation on Monday October 11, 2010. This resolution was non-binding and voters will get the opportunity to cast their votes on the issue at the polls on November 2, 2010.
I really don’t know what Sharpton’s input will do for the situation since voters will make the final decision with the ballots they cast. And, even though I assume Sharpton tries not to turn down invitations from people when it is a worthy cause, I am pretty sure that there are many other important issues that he could be fighting for…or from what we know about Al Sharpton there are more issues that he could make an appearance at and then not do a damn thing else about. I just find that making a trip to Memphis, TN to try to convince voters to vote against consolidation is far less important than the Scott Sisters who have been incarcerated for 16 years for a crime that they contend to this day that they did not commit . Sharpton could even go to places like Sikeston, MO where people feel that it is okay to put up Klu Klux Klan decorations for Halloween. I am pretty sure if he spoke to the African-American people in Sikeston they could give him an earful of what is going on there. I wonder if Sharpton knows/cares/is willing to speak out on the fact that a Princeton University study shows that black segregation and, to a lesser extent, Hispanic segregation were powerful predictors of the number and rate of foreclosures in the United States . My point is that there are a wide variety of issues that affect African-Americans that Al Sharpton could be marching on, protesting against and speaking up for, yet he is in Memphis giving a speech against consolidation. True, it is a very important issue, but we all know that Sharpton is very good for speeches that hype people up only to bring them back down as they see him boarding his airplane and leaving their troubles (which they thought were also his troubles) behind.