Filed Under:  OpEd

Lost and ‘lost-er’

28th November 2016   ·   0 Comments

By Edmund W. Lewis

Who’s more lost, Kanye “Mouth Almighty” West or Dr. Benjamin “Uncle Ben” Carson? Right about now, I can’t really say.

Both of these public figures have many people wondering if they need a check-up from the neck up after their latest comments in the wake of the presidential election earlier this month.

Kanye West, who is certainly no stranger to controversy or bone-headed comments, said during a recent concert in San Jose, California that he didn’t vote in the recent election but if he had he would have voted for President-elect Donald Trump.

After he was booed by the audience, the talented rapper who is equally socially awkward and logically challenged told the crowd, “That don’t mean that I don’t think that Black Lives Matter, that I don’t mean that I don’t think that I believe in women’s rights… because that was the guy I would’ve voted for.”

Really Kanye? What exactly does it mean?

That you’re not as bright as you think you are? That you were telling the truth when you boasted last year about how you don’t read books?

You tell me.

Kanye had hinted around in the past about running for president and revisited that idea by saying that he definitely plans to run in 2020 — as in four years from now.

I guess if Donald Trump could run for president and win without having demonstrated much in the way of intellect, critical thinking, integrity, social skills or old-fashioned common sense, why not Kanye?

Meanwhile, Dr. Benjamin Carson, a brilliant neurosurgeon and former GOP presidential candidate, turned down a position as Secretary of Health and Human Services in the upcoming Trump administration. His reason? He wasn’t qualified. Yet he thought he was qualified to run the entire country and to serve as “leader of the free world.

“The President-elect offered him anything he wanted to do,” Armstrong Williams, Carson’s business manager, told the news website Circa. “But in the end he didn’t want anything. His background didn’t prepare him to run a federal agency.”

Armstrong Williams added that the good doctor “thinks he can best serve the President outside the administration.”

About a week after Carson reportedly turned down the HHS Cabinet post, Trump said that he planned to offer Carson the position of Secretary of Housing and Urban Development…

Reacting to that news last week, I found myself screaming at the television, “What the hell does Ben Carson know about housing and urban development?”

Sadly, not a damn thing.

But there have been a number of reports that say Carson is seriously considering taking on the HUD post.

Only God knows how someone who has admitted that he doesn’t have the skill set to run a federal agency would turn around and accept a position as the head of another federal agency — one even farther removed from his medical background than the position of Secretary of Health and Human Services.

My whole thing is, if Carson had to do something in the Trump administration, why not take on the job of U.S. Surgeon General? I mean, he is a retired neurosurgeon. I’m just saying…

I had hoped that perhaps Dr. Carson is smart enough to know that it would be unwise for him to join President-elect Donald Trump’s “Cabinet of Deplorables.”

The self-made son of a millionaire is handing out Cabinet positions without giving any thought to a candidate’s educational background or other qualifications.

Good grief.

Anyway, I got a few questions for y’all. Here we go:

• Who thinks having an unenlightened, racist president and Congress will be a new experience for Black people in America?

• With Black food, music and culture playing such a prominent role in why tourists from around the world flock to New Orleans, often called “the most African city in America,” why are the Black masses marginalized and excluded from so many of the annual events that draw Black tourists to the Crescent City?
• Why is it so hard to find a Black-owned and operated jazz nightclub in New Orleans, the birthplace of jazz?

• Why do so many cultural gems who are born in New Orleans, among them Louis “Satchmo” Armstrong and Mahalia Jackson, have to leave their hometown to have a chance to achieve success on their own terms?

• What would Mardi Gras in New Orleans be like without the Zulu Social Aid and Pleasure Club, the Mardi Gras Indians, Al “Carnival Time” Johnson, the Neville Brothers, Professor Longhair, Baby Dolls, Skull and Bones Gang, brass bands and all the other cultural gifts that originated in Black New Orleans?

• Would President-elect Donald Trump have called the Broadway sensation “Hamilton” a “highly overrated” production if one of its cast members had not given Vice President Mike Pence a lot to think about after one of the musical’s recent performances?

• Has President-elect Donald Trump ever NOT responded to a remark or comment that ruffled his feathers?

• How are all those people who didn’t bother to vote or cast a vote for a candidate other than Hillary Clinton because they thought Bernie Sanders should have gotten the Democratic presidential nomination feeling three weeks after the election?

• Why can’t Black public schools play football games at Tad Gormley Stadium in City Park unless they are playing a Catholic League school?

This article originally published in the November 28, 2016 print edition of The Louisiana Weekly newspaper.

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