ColumnistsJames ClingmanOp-EdOpinion

Elections Won’t Change Anything Until We Vote with Our Wallets

By the time you read this, I trust you will have wiped away the slime and the grunge, regurgitated a few times, taken a good bath or shower, relentlessly scrubbed the stench from your bodies, and maybe even found it necessary to delouse, because the dirty, filthy, hateful, distasteful, embarrassing, vile, toxic, grimy, polluted campaign we all witnessed is likely the worst in the history of electing a president.

In light of the lies, slander, vitriol, vulgarity, hypocrisy, hyperbole, false accusations, innuendo, leaks, assaults and even threats of murder, it matters less than usual who wins. No matter the result, there will be millions of people in this country who will be so angry that very little will get done for “The People.” Jan. 20, 2017, will be a very sad day for many voters, depending on which side is victorious. That’s a terrible commentary on this country, and an even worse reflection on the leadership we have chosen.

But what does it say about us? We have fought one another over the two candidates, neither of whom is held in high regard by the majority of the electorate. It has been suggested that our choice is between the “lesser of two evils,” and some say the “evil of two lessers.” We have been led down one of two primrose paths of prevarication, perversion, pseudo-piety and pompous posturing, only to have gone to the polls holding our noses to choose our next leader.

Some have even dropped out of the system altogether because they cannot stand to be a part of such downright evilness. Some have said they will start a civil war if their candidate does not win, some say they will “take out” one of the candidates if things don’t go their way, some have said they will move to another country and some say the whole system is corrupt anyway, so why care about it at all?

We have former candidates who called the two finalists “pathological liar,” “con man,” “woefully unqualified,” “criminal,” “predator” and the like, but those same self-righteous folks, some of whom profess to be of high moral character, are telling us to vote for the very persons they disdained and denigrated during the primaries.

What kind of people are they? Are they typical of what we call a “politician”? Hypocrites who turn on a dime when it’s politically expedient for them, no matter what they said a couple of months ago? I guess we know the answers to those questions, right?

Talk about trouble, folks — we are deep into it. This nation is split nearly 50-50, so there is very little room for compromise or concession on either side, and we are right in the middle of this mess. Yes, the nirvana and utopia, called Barack and Michelle, that many black people thought we were living in is all over — gone. What shall we do now?

Truthfully, irrespective of who wins this election, blacks and poor folks are going to be in the same shape we have been in for a while. After the assessments and Monday-morning quarterbacking is over, many of us will still be sitting in the stadium sulking, complaining and lamenting what took place.

I am reminded of LeBron James’ comments after losing the NBA championship to the Dallas Mavericks in 2011: “At the end of the day, [my haters] have to wake up tomorrow and have the same life that they had before they woke up today. They have the same personal problems they had today.”

Well, all right then. We will have to get back to the real world, which includes not having real political power and very little influence on public policy. But maybe this will be the final wakeup call black people need to understand that until we get our economic act together, we will continue to be viewed as mere childlike voters instead of a true force to be reckoned with.

Here’s a solution: If you are a conscious and conscientious black person, go to www.iamoneofthemillion.com and join the movement as we move closer to economic and political empowerment. We know that in order to attain the levels of power and influence we seek there must be an organized critical mass of people and a vehicle through which that can be done.

This is not a knock on anything anyone else is doing; it’s simply a call for just two percent of black people in this country to join forces, offering their time, talent, and treasure to help our people. The One Million is the only active movement of its kind.

So after you have cleaned up and disinfected yourself on Nov. 9, get into a game you can win — The One Million!

Clingman’s latest book, “Black Dollars Matter: Teach Your Dollars How to Make More Sense,” is available on his website, Blackonomics.com.

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James Clingman

Special to the Informer

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