I raised the question of Barack Obama skipping the NAACP convention in a post several days ago, and applied the same standard to him that would have been applied to Mitt Romney -- referring to Obama as a "racist presidential candidate" for failing to speak to the nation's oldest civil rights group. The title of the post was intended to be somewhat tongue-in-cheek -- but it does seem that Obama has a penchant for avoiding African-Americans.
According to the National Newspaper Publishers Association also known as the Black Press of America, President Obama is avoiding Black media outlets.
This past June, the NNPA held its annual convention in Atlanta. One discussion panel, “Get Out the Vote,” became a venue of criticism over how the president and his administration deal with black owned media outlets.
The Chicago Crusader, a member paper of the NNPA reports that, “African-American newspaper publishers expressed strong displeasure over what they deemed the failure of the President Obama’s Administration to accommodate the needs of the Black Press.”
The Crusader goes on to highlight the discussion as it unfolded.
“We don’t think the president has ever spoken to us. He’s spoken to the Latino community… This is the first president since Franklin Roosevelt that has not invited the Black Press to the White House (for an interview).” –Robert W. Bogle, Publisher of the Philadelphia Tribune and former NNPA President
“I have made several requests that we be allowed to have an interview. All 200 of us cannot get an interview with the president, that’s unreasonable…But for a national organization such as NNPA to not be allowed to interview the president, that’s unacceptable.” –Dorothy Leavell, former NNPA President
But, it isn’t only President Obama that is avoiding the Black Press. The Crusader also reports that other African-American media outlets have experienced difficulties when it comes to getting interviews with the first lady. “Heart & Soul magazine, a health and fitness magazine for women of color, offered to place Michelle Obama on the cover but they, too, were denied an interview…”
And when a group of black pastors sought to meet with him regarding gay marriage? They were unwelcome.
And as I pointed out in that earlier post, Obama has sent surrogates to speak at predominantly black groups during this year's campaign rather than go himself -- including the NAACP convention.
One has to wonder -- is Barack Obama afraid of black people? Or does he just think he can ignore them because he has their votes all locked up?