Vicente Fox and The "Black ADL”
“There is no doubt that Mexicans, filled with dignity, willingness and ability to work, are doing jobs that not even blacks want to do there in the United States.”
- Vicente Fox
Many Blacks across the country are in an uproar over this recent statement made by Mexican President Vicente Fox who later expressed regret that his words were misunderstood. In spite of his explanation that his statement was not rooted in racism, some believe he should still apologize for his comment while leaders like Jesse Jackson Sr. and Al Sharpton have flown to Mexico to discuss the controversial 29-word sentence. The NAACP has also reportedly asked Fox to further explain his comments at their annual convention in July.
Question. What makes some Black individuals and leaders any different from certain Jews and the Anti-Defamation League (ADL)? The ADL overreacts to the smallest mention, criticism or negative sounding statement made about Jews, just as some believe a number of Blacks are being extreme in their reaction to Fox’s words.
The ADL, over the years, has vilified leaders like Minister Louis Farrakhan as “anti-Semitic” for statements he has made and for some he has never made but that were manufactured and spread through the media. The Jewish defense group has: called on Min. Farrakhan to apologize for what they perceived to be “anti-Semitic” remarks; refused to accept his explanations of statements they found to be troublesome; actively engaged in campaigns to demand other leaders distance themselves from or denounce the Nation of Islam leader.
Granted, Blacks don’t appear to have an organization as aggressive or cohesive as the ADL, but what makes those who negatively reacted - or over reacted - to Fox’s words any different from what they might criticize about the ADL?
This writer finds nothing “racist” or problematic about Fox’s statement nor is there any dispute that many Mexicans accept jobs that numbers in America - Black, White or other - have no desire to perform. Maybe Fox was saying that even Blacks, who are descendants of the slaves who received the worst treatment known in history and who are still portrayed as the nation’s ‘undesirables’, refuse to do certain types of work in America - which many Mexicans gladly perform.
Blacks in this country have bigger and more pertinent issues to be concerned about than this one which has some wringing their hands over Fox’s virtually harmless words. What of the actual actions taken by many in America that are against the Black family and community? What of continued police brutality? What of the inequitable sentencing standards utilized in U.S. courts? What of the ever expanding big-business prison industry? What about sexual and physical abuse of Black children? What of all the real issues that are facing the people who are less than 200 years up from the chattel slavery many of their ancestors endured?
It appears that Blacks - some of them - have once again been hoodwinked, bamboozled and had! Some complained about the interjection of the “gay marriage” issue into the 2004 presidential campaign, even calling it a ‘Weapon of Mass Distraction’ which caused many to lose focus on more important issues and become divided over a manufactured and strategically placed diversion.
Now again, the least unified group of people in the country is showing how reactionary they are as they respond to Fox’s words as if those words really have anything to do with the major issues facing Blacks in America.
Are Blacks really and truly that gullible - even in 2005? Who is responsible for setting off this latest ‘Weapon of Mass Distraction’ that has succeeded in diverting attention from more pertinent issues? Who, or what cause, stands to gain when some individuals and groups sacrifice the concerns that really matter and begin acting as if they are the Black version of the ADL?
By Adeeba Folami