An Open Letter to Travis Smiley [LinkUp]

It seems that since Presidental Candidate Barack Obama taken the lead (and even sometime before then) in the Democratic race, a lot of people have been talking about how people are falling for his charismatic leadership and how he talks more about changing politics as usual than what his platform is. Others talk about something even less important… how he’s not a black leader.

Travis Smiley, one of my favorite thought provokers, sadly is on the short(?) list of why Obama should not be call “a black leader”. Travis Smiley is asking Obama to attend an event in called “State Of Black America 2008″ conference on Feb. 23 in New Orleans in Louisiana, a state in which Obama already won the majority of the vote. Travis Smiley is basically asking Obama to take a break from a busy campaign and show up to show support for blacks… when there’s still states to be won and a contest to finish!

So, Paradise Gray from X-Clan posted on his myspace page an Open Letter to Travis Smiley, asking him to reconsider making Obama come back to a state he already won and to allow him to focus on the other states he have to win over.

Also, I will provide a LinkUp to another another blogger, Roland S. Martin of Essence as to why Obama should skip Travis Smiley’s event as well.

An Open Letter to Travis Smiley – Paradise Gray’s MySpace Blog
Why Obama should skip Tavis Smiley’s State of the Black Union
– The Roland Report (Essence’s Magazine Blog)

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  • Raible

    I like Tavis, but this rant of his seems to come out of left field.

    Tavis seems to be saying:

    “Stop trying to be the most powerful man on Earth, and come to a rally in Louisiana instead. Don’t try to become someone who can make real change, instead come to a forum where we just scream about the fact nobody is making real change.”

    If you care about civil rights (and obviously Tavis does), then you know Barack’s election will be the most significant advancement in civil rights since the end of segregation and Jim Crow.

    Let me be clear, electing Barack will not end racism. That ugly shit will go on in this country for decades after Barack is long gone, because racism is hatred, and there will always be people in America who choose hatred first – black and white.

    But electing Barack will show other black leaders that they *can* assume power in our system. If that comes to pass, my faith in the system has vastly improved, and I know others will feel the same way. That’s significant. It won’t be a perfect world just because Barack got elected, but it will be a brighter one,…a world one step closer to what the civil rights movement was all about in the first place.

  • SimplyPut

    You never invite your battleship up the river. Your gathering was fit for smaller gunboats such as yourself. Obama is fighting for all Americans. If he becomes president, that is when you present your issues and concerns to him. His job then will be to listen and address not only yours, but those concerns that are important to all Americans. As an African American president, there is a strong possibility that some African American issues that were ignored in the past might just receive a little more attention. Tavis, I listen to you often, I love you bro and what you try to do for the black community, However, I must say that you are small fish and though inspirational, definitely not influential. At least, not beyond the audience of your syndications. Know your boundaries bro.

  • Saundra Spencer

    Travis, I am sorry for all the heat that you are getting at this time I feel you have a right to ask questions and expect him to show for black events that are on national television since he is running as a blackman for President. I would think that he would have appeared if nothing else, but to tell us how he is going to help all people and make that the stage to show us how we will all come togather. My father use to say praise the bridge that carries you across the safest, so he has serveral bridges, address all of them. I don’t feel that you, Martin Luther, Malcom X, Adam Clayton Powell, Al Sharpton,Harriett Tubman and all the other’s that went before him are small fish. I want to know how did we forget everybody and jump over to Obama and how did he get more influential that the other black senator’s that have worked hard for years and helped us.I am concerned, we need to be very careful how we go about this. Travis keep doing what your doing.(somebody has to).