RUSH: The Reverend Sharpton this afternoon on television spoke to a news anchor. Also a guest on the show was Syracuse University finance professor Dr. Boyce Watkins, and they’re talking here about Obama and the black agenda, and the anchor infobabe says, ‘Dr. Watkins writes that Al Sharpton and other civil rights leaders are forced to do the dirty work on racial equality because our black president has been terrorized into silence on issues of race. What is your response to that, Reverend Sharpton?’
SHARPTON: Am I going to say to the president, in a meeting that he made very public in the Oval Office, ‘I don’t care about dropout rate of black kids and that you giving us billions of dollars. I don’t care about health care and you’re putting millions there. I don’t care you giving more to historic black colleges. I want you to put your fists up and say, ‘Black power!” then I’m really more interested in symbolism than I am the substinitive (sic) problems of our community. Our job is to deliver something tangible.
RUSH: You need me to translate that? All right. What Sharpton is saying is that black America wants Obama to put his fist up and say, ‘Black power!’ but Obama’s trying to deliver ’em stuff and they think he doesn’t care about race, when Obama’s actually trying to deliver them stuff. So he’s chiding black America. He’s defending Obama on race here. Because, you know, they want the black power salute from Obama. They’re not getting it. (interruption) That’s right. Snerdley reminds me that this whole thing started with Tavis Smiley, who’s got that show on PBS, right? So now the next sound bite here is the anchor saying, ‘Well, Dr. Watkins, all those issued you’ve chronicled as pervasively challenged to black community, where’s the first place…?’
Now, remember, we’ve been working on this since ’64 civil rights movement. That’s really the essence: Brown v. Board of Education. We’ve been working on ‘fixing’ the black community for over 60 years here. You might want to go even longer than that. Yet here on MessNBC just this afternoon, Dr. Watkins of Syracuse University, a finance professor, says, ‘We just got our first black president. Where’s the first place to start, professor?’ I can’t wait to hear the answer. I haven’t read the transcript of this. I don’t know what the guy’s going to say. When I saw the question, I said, ‘I’m going to listen to it with my audience. We’re going to listen to it together. Here’s the answer: ‘Where’s the first place to start fixing the black problem.’
WATKINS: When you’ve got black boys being four to five times likely to be placed in special education than the white kids, and you’ve got all these kids that aren’t graduating; these kids going to school that doesn’t have the same resources as the schools in the suburbs, that’s a problem. That is Jim Crow in the flesh. Now, if you want to take the next step, Mr. Eric Holder, you’ve got to realize that we’ve got modern day slavery in the prison system. The United States incarcerate(s) more of its citizens than any other country in the world. Most of those citizens are African-Americans.
RUSH: Okay. Well, let me remind Dr. Boyce Watkins of something. There was a program in Washington, DC, that allowed poor black students to use vouchers, money that was largely philanthropic, to attend private schools. Such as Sidwell Friends where Obama’s kids go, where Clinton’s daughter went, where Algore’s kids went. Practically everybody who’s anybody wants their kids to go there. And for the first time some poor black kids got to go there. They loved it and they were doing great and they were scoring well, and guess who shut the program down? (Gasp!) Barack Obama! Barack Obama shut the program down, and you know why? Because he had to make peace about the teachers unions. You can’t take kids out of a teachers union school and put ’em someplace where they do better because it makes everybody else look bad — teachers, principals, and so forth. So the monies dried up, the program was not renewed. A program that was started not by a black person was shut down by the first black president, Mr. Watkins.