‘I’m Black, I’m Supposed to Be a Democrat’: 2 Women Explain Why They Veered Right
Bill Walton recently welcomed Star Parker and Winsome Sears to his video podcast for a discussion of why so many black Americans continue to vote for the failed liberal agenda. Here is a transcript of their conversation, edited mostly only for style and clarity.
Bill Walton: Welcome to “The Bill Walton Show.” Race just seems to dominate so much of our political debate in the United States. Today, I want to explore and learn about the past, present, and future state of black America. Who has the better policy answers, conservatives or liberals or libertarians? What’s been the impact of Donald Trump’s presidency? With me to talk this through are two courageous women in the battle for religious freedom, economic freedom, and individual liberty.
Star Parker is the founder and president of the Center for Urban Renewal and Education. CURE’s mission is to fight poverty and restore dignity through messages of faith, freedom, and personal responsibility. An author of several books, she is a regular commentator on national television and radio and is a nationally syndicated columnist. Star has a bachelor’s degree in marketing and international business from Woodbury University, and has received numerous awards and commendations for her work on public policy issues.
Winsome Earle Sears was born in Jamaica and came to the United States when she was 6 years of age. Raised in New York City, she enlisted in the United States Marine Corps at the age of 19, and became a U.S. citizen one year later. She was the first black Republican woman and first female veteran elected to the Virginia General Assembly. She is a graduate of Old Dominion University, with a B.A. in English and economics. Welcome.
Star Parker: Thank you.
Walton: Star, let’s start with you. Before we dig into the specifics, how did you come to believe what you believe?
Parker: Well, I came to believe what I believe by reading a proverb a day. I was believing the lies of the left for a very long time. I believed all that we even hear today, that my problems were somebody else’s fault. That America was racist and I shouldn’t mainstream. That I was poor because others were wealthy.
In buying all of these lies, I got very lost in my decision-making. So very early in life, [I] was engaged in criminal activity and drug activity and sexual activity and abortion activity and welfare activity, and then God saved me. Some gentlemen introduced me to the Lord and I changed my life. I went to school, I got a degree, I started a business. After the ’92 Los Angeles riots destroyed my business, I began to focus on social policy, and that’s how I came to run my organization, Urban CURE, today.
But if you ask, “How did you shape those views beyond just the personal responsibility that comes from knowing the Scripture and figuring out how to live through a daily proverb?” I started a business. That’s when I understood how extensive government is in the affairs of someone who just wants to buy an apple and sell it for enough to buy another one, and another one and another one. And [I] started being encroached by all types of three letters, from the IRS to the you-name-it. The disability, the environmental protection, a long list of all of [these] alphabets too.
Walton: Well, yeah, George McGovern became a conservative after he started a bed and breakfast.
Parker: Yes, exactly, you start finding out that, “Wait a minute, what has happened to our great country?” I think that’s what shaped my economic views. But what has shaped my philosophy and what drives me and my organization is my born-again experience.
Winsome Sears: Amen.
Sears: Well, I am a Marine and I had had my last child, my husband and I, and we were living in California at the time. It was right around the time of the election and George Bush Sr., he was running, he was a candidate and I was still a Democrat. I’m black …
Walton: This would have been ’88?
Sears: Yes. I’m black, I’m supposed to be a Democrat. It rhymes, OK. The whole family’s full of Democrats, so what am I? I am what I am. [Mike] Dukakis, his commercial came on and he said, “I’m going to expand welfare. I’m going to make sure that this, that, the other, we’re going to give you money and we’re going to… ” I thought, “But if that happens, my folks, they’re just going to be living on what they get. There’s nothing to propel them.” Then he said, “For abortion, I’m going to make sure abortion is this and legal and expanded and do this and public monies and public…” I had just had my baby and I thought, “Well, I don’t believe that.”
Then right behind him came George Bush Sr. with his commercial, and he said, “If all you have is welfare, is what the government gives you, you will never have anything to pass onto your children.” Then he said, “As for abortion, I’m going to try and make it less and less and less.” Then I said, “Oh my God, I’m a Republican.”
The next thing was, “How am I going to tell my family?” Because it’s almost as if I was changing my religion. It was a shock to me and I think to many black people; they really are Republicans because we are the most conservative, really, group. It’s just a matter of me getting in there and people like Star and everybody else getting in and saying, “Let us be who we want to be. You don’t get to tell me how to run my politics and I don’t get to tell you either. Just let us be free.”
Walton: Well, still, you must get a lot of pushback. We talked about before we came on the air [that] you’re a minority within a minority and you’re really stepping out of line when it comes to believing what you believe. I’m sure you’ve taken a fair amount of heat.
Parker: I didn’t have to deal with it that much, because I didn’t come from a political family. If anyone in my family even voted, nobody knew. We’ve been a very eclectic family rooted in the South, and we’ve had family reunions forever.
We’ve learned how to not discuss those things and not care if somebody did differ in them. In not discussing them, I wasn’t even elected, I didn’t even register to vote, until after that particular election. I don’t think I registered to vote or even knew to vote until Bush Sr. was running.
Walton: There’s a media portrayal, how many blacks are conservative do you think? Is there …
Parker: In fact, just a recent poll it says 22% agree with the Republican Party, 22% say absolutely out of their mouth that they are conservatives, but only 8% vote Republican.
Walton: That was in 2016 number for Trump?
Parker: Yeah. Yeah, it’s just for Trump. That 8%, there’s 14% [more] out there that just you have to ask for the order.
Sears: Well, let me tell you, I remember when President Obama was, well, it was the election, either he or John McCain, and I had a person call me and [this was a] very prominent Ph.D., won’t say anymore. But he said, “Winsome, you’re going to have to vote for Obama.” I said, “Why?” He said, “Because I know he’s going to wreck the country with his economic policies and some of his social policies, but I don’t [think] I’ll ever get a chance to vote for another black man in my lifetime.”
This is a person with a Ph.D. who knows better and yet he’s voting on color. I know that no one ever knocked on my door to ask me for my vote, for my opinion. I haven’t lived in per se a black neighborhood, but I lived always in mostly liberal areas. They just assumed they had me, and so nobody ever knocked on my door to ask, “What do you think about this reason?”
Nobody, Republicans, never came because, I guess, they figured it’s going to take too many election cycles to win me and Democrats never came because “We already got her.” We’ve got to go find new blood. That’s why I say, and I’ve said, I want to be like you, Bill, when I grow up. I want to have what you have. I go to the polling station, for instance, and they see me and some will hand me [a flyer] and some won’t because they can’t …
Walton: Republicans don’t waste their flyer.
Sears: Right, and Democrats don’t want to waste their flyer either.
Walton: Either. We got you.
Sears: I get nothing, but everybody assumes. I walk into that polling station and it angers me every single time that people assume I’m a Democrat. I want what you have, I don’t know if you’re libertarian, Green Party, Reform Party, Democrat, a Republican, I don’t know who you are.
I have to come and get you, I have to win you, I have to tell you my ideas. I have to talk with you, I have to discuss, debate. But nobody does that with people who look like me. Well, Star, they will because you’re so famous. But …
Parker: I think it depends on the state you live in, because I don’t know that that reality is through the country. But it perhaps is a reality in some states. I do think that when we break it down, in particular, today, what is going on in America, there’s a window of opportunity to get more black votes to go to the Republican Party, if that’s the goal.
Some people, their goal is to keep the Republican Party as a conservative party rooted in its principles. The reason that that opportunity is now is because we’ve tried it the other ways for a long time. When you think about the uniqueness of African American heritage in this country, you can appreciate why it’s been such a challenge for us to focus time and attention and resources on figuring out how to get ideas and information discussed in this community.
A legacy of slavery and Jim Crow and a welfare state has had some consequences. One of those consequences is there’s a disproportionate number of African Americans that work for government. When you think about the expansion of government, especially, in the welfare state, only 20 cents on $1 actually reaches the household. You’re talking about $900 billion of antipoverty money that’s basically the pot for bureaucrats, and bureaucrats are black. You have a dilemma with the black middle class, with the black upper class, because this is a community of people who have government in their lives when it comes to economics. A lot of people vote their economic interests, not their race.
Sears: Well, we can talk about, for example, my election [in 2001]. It was a double whammy for me because when I was recruited, I wasn’t really well known in the community. But I felt that this was a calling. I prayed about it. I had gone up to … let me tell you how uninformed I was. You said that you hadn’t registered to vote and you hadn’t voted; I didn’t even know that in order to be, say you were part of the Republican Party, you had to be a member.
I didn’t become a member of the Republican Party until the day that I was asked to run. I had to make the case of why I was a Republican to my local Republican Party. I just assumed if you voted Republican you were. Anyway, I went up to vote for Mark Earley for [Virginia] governor at the time. He was running against, he would have been running against Mark Warner, who is now senator, but this was for the governorship.
I didn’t get to vote because I wasn’t registered anywhere. To make a long story short, OK, I was given the ask: “Winsome, we’d like you to run.” So prayed about it, which is what drives me more than anything because I know no one is greater than God and so he’s in control at all times.
I got to go back to Jamaica and my children got to go back to Jamaica. Just because I’m black, it didn’t mean anything’ as an immigrant, I had to deal with that. Then I had to deal with the fact that you’re black and you’re for the Republicans and they don’t like us, etc., etc. No policy, just what they keep hearing.
I would have little grandmothers sneak up behind me and just whisper, brush against me and say, “I’m voting for you.” But these are grandmas, they’re not supposed to be afraid to let people know who they are. This is what we do to each other in my community, unfortunately, and it’s still happening.
Walton: There is a phenomena that the Republicans can be pretty clueless. Republicans make assumptions that they’re not going to win the black vote. One of you referred to something called the “Star Trek solution” that Republicans have.
Sears: Oh, that would be me.
Sears: Yeah, that’s an organization where we think we can just fly in and get things done. But you’ve got to make relationships, you’ve got to win hearts. I’ve said before some of the things that we can do as Republicans–we love education, right? We want everybody to be part of the taxpaying members of society who need education for that.
What do we do? I say go to the local Boys and Girls Club. They are around, they help poverty-stricken single mothers, whatever it is, and buy some computers and let them know the Republican Party did that. Then maybe sponsor the T-shirts for midnight basketball. I’m just, this is a very …
Walton: Be part of the community. Just be …
Sears: Be part of the community, and I’ll tell you why, because come election time, the Democrats are going to come around and they’re going to say those are Republicans, they’re bad, they’re bad. That’s when it comes to fruition, because the folks at the Boys and Girls Club and the parents will say, “Which Republicans are you talking about? Because the Republicans I know, you see those computers, they bought them. The Republicans that I know, you remember, our basketball tournament, the T-shirts, they bought them. Which Republicans are you talking about?”
Walton: Before we dig into the policy, which I think are material and part of the reasons why you are for Republicans, you both talked about faith. How important is faith to you coming to where you are and believing what you believe about what’s right and wrong?
Parker: Well, I think it’s absolutely important and not just for myself, personally, but for public policy. I think that that’s what the founders saw and knew very well. And expressed often, that you can’t self-govern without God. It was important to have a moral people.
I think that that’s where we’ve lost ourselves as a nation, the more heavy the hand of government is, the less religion you have. If you look in any and almost every socialist country, there’s no coexistence between God and government. That’s what’s the big struggle today. The cultural war rooted in this determination that the left wants to do abortion is what started the cultural war. But where we are today is just fundamental–who’s going to do this.
Walton: You really can’t have a functioning democracy unless you’ve got a common moral foundation.
Parker: Well, you’ve got to …
Walton: And that’s where we’ve drifted apart.
Parker: … and then that’s where you say where do you get that as well. That’s where libertarians miss it, you’ve got say where.
Walton: Libertarians miss that.
Parker: Yeah, where are you? If you make it up as you go along, then you’re no better than the liberal because that’s what they want–situational ethics.
Walton: I don’t think people understand that libertarians, and I am one but I’m a recovering libertarian, you got to have a fabric of society, civil society, church, faith, family, all those sorts of things or you can’t have an economy.
Parker: You can’t have an economy; it’s the same coin and you just have two sides of that coin. What really fascinates me about libertarianism, and I’ve had these heated discussions that you’ve had not just with myself, but with my friends, is de Tocqueville. Their hero in all of this said, like, I had to find the secret and I found it when I went into their churches.
It’s just they’re inseparable. If you don’t self-govern and root it in a Judeo-Christian ethic, why do you believe what you believe? Then you will open the door for moral chaos, which then opens the door for a totalitarian state.
Sears: I have noticed that many times when I read the Bible, the Lord will say to the people he has chosen, “Don’t be afraid, be strong and courageous.” I think it’s because we will be afraid to take stands. But if we understand that he controls everything, then we’re fine.
It is why I can do what I do. It is why I’m generally not afraid. When I do get afraid, it’s because I keep forgetting he will never leave me, he will never abandon me. That’s the second thing he always says when he tells the people to not to be afraid.
I’m reading about David. You think about David. David killed Goliath, fought lions and bears, and that’s why he said he knew that he could fight Goliath too. And yet David spit on himself and everything else and acted like a madman when he was confronted with a king who could have killed him. He forgot this God that he served was a mighty God and could help him. We don’t remember that part about David, we just remember the giant slain, but he’s man like everybody else.
God is important to me, and it was one of the reasons that really brought me to the Republican Party because I understood how we came to be. And that there were certain number of folks who said, “We will not vote for a president who supports slavery, it’s just not going to happen.” They were willing to lose everything and they did. They lost the elections until we got Abraham Lincoln.
This is my home, but I’ve always said even after when I was elected [in 2001], I’m a Christian first and a Republican second. I don’t want to hear about your economic policies and how you’re going to build a country if we have to kill babies along the way. It’s just not going to work.
Walton: Star, you’ve talked about the three wars that were started in the ’60s.
Parker: Right, they bring us to the place where people elected Donald Trump.
Walton: Exactly, the thing was where things have been. How did it get this way? Where we are? Where we think we should take it?
Parker: Right. Well, if you think about the values coming out of the–they call them the greatest generation. They were intact when people understood faith and family. They understood the boundaries of government and why we were existing and why we were growing.
But there was a war in the ’60s. The baby boom generation got off track. The first war we had was a war on religion, where we did scrub our schools from any reference of God. During that same body of time, we had a war on marriage, where the feminists just didn’t like their station in life and decided that they were going to work through public policy to change that current reality …
Then we had a war on poverty that basically said, “Don’t think about any natural consequences that come from these decisions you’re now making without religion and without family, because we have safety nets. Over time, those safety nets evolved into three rules: Don’t work, don’t save, don’t get married, and we’ll keep you addicted to a government …
Walton: I want to make sure I get it: Don’t work, don’t save, and don’t get married.
Parker: Don’t get married, and now we’ll keep you enslaved to our poverty plantation. You fast-forward five years after [Martin Luther] King’s death, Roe v. Wade is national law. Look where we are today, black people have killed off more people than were in existence during that time. There are 20 million African Americans during the ’60s; we just aborted 20 million after ’60 and ’70.
Sears: We’ve done what the clan was never able to do. We did it to ourselves.
Parker: Yeah, but the law … did change. The law did say there’s nothing wrong with exterminating death that’s grown in your womb, what God calls his reward.
Then the law supported this through our tax dollars to build these big corporate welfare recipients of Planned Parenthood. Then they targeted this particular vulnerable community to tell them that their children were environmental hazards, so don’t have too many.
Sears: In North Carolina right now, Planned Parenthood has built, opened four clinics, four, in just one county. But where are they? They’re in the black neighborhood.
Parker: That’s right, 79% of them. …
Sears: My father came to America, we’re talking about the ’60s, he came just 11 days before Martin Luther King Jr. gave his “I Have a Dream” speech. It’s significant because he came with only $1.75 in his pocket, a foreigner.
I said to him … I didn’t know this until I was running for Congress [in 2004] and I thought I better find out more before a reporter gets to it. I said, “Why did you come?”
He said, “Because this is where the jobs were?”
I said, “Yeah, but it was really bad for us at that time.”
He said, “I don’t know anything about that, I just know that this is where the opportunities were.”
He started with $1.75, moved in with his sister. Six months later, he said, he took whatever job he could get so he could put himself through school, moved out, got roommates.
I said, “So you got financial aid?” He said, “No, I worked myself through school.”
Now he’s comfortably retired, left New York for Atlanta. Surprise, surprise, I didn’t think he could ever leave New York. But somebody would come to him, one of our socialist folks who don’t know how any of this began, and they would say to him, “Why do you have such a big house?”
Not knowing the backstory, which is [he] came to America with $1.75. If my father can do that as a foreigner, don’t tell me this country isn’t great. He’s a black man, you don’t have to, “Oh, is he black or is he …” No, no, he’s black, you can tell he’s black and he did it.
He did whatever it took, and so his two daughters–college educated, here I am–made history. What’s significant about the history that I made is to say, “I was elected in a majority minority district.” We were 54% Democrat, and what that tells you is it can be done; it can be done if we ask, if we ask it can be done.
Walton: You really stopped me in my tracks. I’m thinking about how we can get people to not see race.
Parker: That’s impossible, why would you want anyone to do that?
Sears: Yeah, we are who God made us to be. He loves all colors.
Walton: I think we’re all human beings, but that’s just …
Parker: Well, yeah, but we do have different experiences and we did have different shades and black doesn’t crack, so I’m enjoying every minute. I’m enjoying every minute of getting older and more seasoned in this.
But, Bill, to your point, I think where you’re going with that, and correct me if I’m just making an assumption, is how do we break down all of the time when we’re discussing race? Why is it that we can’t find common ground on what this country should be? What we should look like? Why is it that when you talk to the majority of African Americans, they tend to vote Democrat and liberal?
When you talk to the majority of white Americans, they’re turned in the other way. I think that one place we can’t ignore and why this has happened is in education and what has happened there. When you think about the development of the Department of Education, you talk about going through the journey of the past, how did we get here? We really did have problems coming in through those ’60s as African American people.
The next thing we know we have a Department of Education rather than the society saying, “You know what, OK, maybe we should stop discriminating and segregating against certain ethnicities and allow our children to be educated.” The society kept the wall up long enough for the government to move in. The government moved in to develop [the] Department of Education, and look where we are today. We have 30-something states that have Blaine amendments. It’s written into their constitution …
Walton: A Blaine Amendment is what?
Parker: It’s where it’s written into their constitution that money cannot follow children to the schools the parents want. The reason for the Blaine Amendment was because of religious divisions at that time. But now it’s trapping poor children in failing schools. Now, keep in mind, there is a Supreme Court decision coming very rapidly. So next June, it could be all over, but you said what happened in the past, that’s what happened in the past.
So now you have all of the poor, all of those that are low wage and poor, being educated in a government system that’s union controlled, whose philosophy is secularism and socialism. Two generations later, of course, you have all those that are on the margins, poor, low wage, which are very disproportionately African American [and] Latino voting for Democrats and liberals. People vote their economic interest, not there racial interest.
Walton: A popular vouchers.
Parker: Vouchers are incredibly popular, and let me give you one story on the voucher movement, because I’ve been in that movement a long time as well. When the philosophers behind and the thinkers behind school choice were calling it school choice, we were getting very, very low ratings in the black community. They didn’t want school choice, and so Milton Friedman finally said something is wrong, why is it that this phenomenal opportunity for money to follow children to schools parents want not being received in black America?
They finally polled. They did what you said, “Well, maybe we should go ask black folks.” Well, you know what black folks heard when they heard school choice? They heard that the Jim Crow South, there’s kids not getting an education so they changed their parental choice. Now [it] is called educational options and EdChoice. And guess what, black people are polling 95% that they want opportunity.
Walton: Yeah, that Obama shut down the voucher program and he …
Parker: He tried to shut it down, but he didn’t, he wasn’t successful. That was only a D.C. voucher program, though. Remember, that was only the sampling here, and that was a fascinating sampling too, thanks to [education activist] Virginia Walden Ford, who now has a movie out about her life and her opportunity to get that voucher set up here in Washington, D.C. That her own son didn’t get to take advantage of, because he had graduated by then. …
[The voucher] was for $7,500 and it could only go with the student if you were failing in your class, your school was also failing, and … you know how many applications they got? You had to be at a certain income level, low. And you know how many applicants they got? Like 3 million. People want school choice, they want to get to the economic station in life that they don’t need the big hand of government. It starts right there.
Walton: Well, and most of the politicians have school choice, because they can send their kids to private school.
Parker: That’s exactly right and they do.
Sears: Well, that’s it. See, this is one of the things that helped Ron DeSantis [win the governorship] in Florida …
Parker: That’s exactly right.
Sears: … when there were 100,000 black women who voted for him as opposed to [Andrew] Gillum, the Democrat, because Gillum said he was going to take school choice away. You’re not going to do that, not to my children.
In my race for example, the Democrat that I was running against, the incumbent, he sent his children to–not private school, because he was a little bit savvy there. But he sent them out of the district to school in Virginia Beach, where they were better. But in the meantime …
Walton: Well, he could afford to do that.
Sears: Right, his constituents were trapped in failing schools. You point that out, you talk about this kind of hypocrisy, and you’re getting right to the heart of the thing.
Parker: Let’s return, though, to what you just said about Gov. DeSantis now, because it is really, really important. Because you made the point earlier, Winsome, about how Republicans need to go into these districts and make their case. Gov. DeSantis made a deliberate effort to go into black communities all through the state of Florida and talk to them specifically about school choice, because they have a vibrant school trust program.
They don’t have a Blaine Amendment in Florida, so therefore money can move. How money began to move with students in Florida is because [a] prior governor, Gov. [Jeb] Bush, opened up under No Child Left Behind the opportunity for money to start moving. To say if you’re trapped in a failing school, you don’t have to be. That opened up the door for Florida to be very aggressive in promoting educational options.
DeSantis went specifically to the places that you said, he went to the PTAs, he went everywhere. Gillum, the African American going to solve all problems for black people decided that he was going to publicly rebuke the opportunity grants for money to go with parents and children to other schools. He rebuked the charters. In fact, he said he was going to shut down the charter schools. You’re right, 18% of African American women voted for DeSantis.
This is a monumental … This the group that Republicans never get. That was the first time in the history that black women voted for a Republican and were the margin to help him win. Black men, Trump got a lot of black men but he did not get black females. But on educational options, you can gain the trust of the black women.
Sears: You know what that does? If you get us voting once and our fingers didn’t fall off and we’re still alive, we voted for a Republican. I’m like, “Gosh,” then we’ll start listening more and we’ll think about the next person we vote for.
Walton: Sammy Davis Jr., because he supported Nixon.
Sears: Right, and then Jim Brown felt some of it too when he was still active as an NFL player. … I ran because I wanted folks to know the seat that I hold does not belong to me, it belongs to you. You are America, you; this is your seat and we will be your representatives. You don’t vote for me just because I’m black or white, you vote because you care about the policies, you care about [them] and you want to see who it is that represents those for you.
I knew that no one ever came to their doors either, so I made sure, I wanted to set an example. I went to one of my schools; I had all of the public housing projects in my district, it’s 54% black. I said to the children, it was third grade, and I said, “Let’s make a law, let’s talk about how you make laws.”
I explained how we did it and then I said, “Now, who wants to make a law?” Young child rose up and he said, “I want to make a law, and the law I want to make is that if you kill somebody, you must pay for their funeral.” What is he experiencing in the third grade that that is the first law that comes to mind? This is boots on the ground stuff, this is in-your-face stuff.
Parker: That’s a good idea.
Walton: But he’s experiencing murder, I mean … there were like 70 murders in Chicago last weekend …
Parker: Well, I don’t know the district you ran in, but what are their property rates and their murder rates? One of the beautiful things about the Trump administration is the Opportunities Zones initiative. Now we know exactly where those districts are.
It’s probably one of those, there are 87, 100 of them in the country and we’re deliberately focused on all of them. Money is flowing in because of the capital gain benefit that you will get by putting your money in one of these Zip codes. This time rates will come down very, very rapidly here. …
Sears: I was vice president of the State Board of Education in Virginia. We would always hear about the things that are not happening …. How do we come alongside and help parents, help the communities? Because we’ve tried to take faith so much out of politics that it is difficult to get the buy-in of the powers that be–the unions, everybody else, the black politicians who … never have anything to do really with us.
I have seen black politicians, especially, from my neighborhood, they act one way when they’re in the neighborhood and they’re totally a different way when they’re in Richmond, for example. They would never know their constituents, they would never know their heritage.
Walton: Wasn’t there a Yale study that showed that the Democrats talk differently to minorities than they do to anybody else [and] the Republicans don’t?
Sears: Well, I’ve got an example for you: the former speaker of the [Virginia] House, way back then Democrat, because so far in Virginia we’ve only had two Republican speakers in our whole history. But, anyway, he came to our local neighborhood watch, and this is how he styled it. We’re all black, and he said, “So and so, you remember, back in ’64, I was the only white man who did X, Y, and Z. And, Bella, you remember back in ’68, I was the only white man who did…”
I’m sitting in shock, I’m in shock. And then we are there, “Yes, sir. Yes, sir.” What? Then his opponent came in and she said, “Well, here’s what I’m going to do on transportation, here’s what I’m going to do on education, and here’s what I’m going …”
My mind was fried, and I got up and I said [to him], “How dare you come and speak to us like that? If you went to, for example, your Western constituency where all the rich folks are, you would talk to them about policy. But here you come and you talk about what you’ve done for us in the ’60s. What have you done for us lately? You come talk policy to us, because we have minds too.” Oh, he got red. …
Parker: I don’t live in Virginia and … their politics is very, very different. What I do know is that every congressional vote now is impacting all of the country, so we are very concerned now about the legislators from particular areas.
Walton: We’ve been talking about that, the size of the federal government such that it really matters because it affects everybody much more than it used to. But we talked about faith and teaching values, even school choice.
The thing that troubles me is that with the rules on curriculum, the rules on accreditation, the rules on teacher certification, even when you’ve got choice, you sometimes end up in a school that’s not that much different than what it could be. Have you dug into that at all?
Parker: Well, that’s not true. … Competition is what makes a school great in a community. When you think about just the government running schools, we should all be concerned about that, in particular, with the type of curriculum that is now being pushed down …
Walton: Oh, the history curriculums are terrible.
Parker: … As you’re pointing out, Bill, not even just in the government-run, government-funded, union-run schools, but also in the private schools. This secularism has seeped into all of our society, and conformity has seeped into all of our society to where everything has to be politically correct. But one of the best lines that Trump said in his inaugural speech: That was then.
While it’s important to talk about the past and how we got here, I am just so excited about what has happened just in the last two years. That was then, to where everything has changed. [Trump] has stacked the courts now with conservative-leaning philosophy 150 deep. He has an initiative for taxes that has increased employment to the place where unemployment, you’ve got even a high school dropout can find a …
Sears: And in the black community.
Parker: When you think about what he’s done even on education and educational options, now [there] needs to be a court decision to get school choice or what we like to now call parental choice across the country. That has to go through the court because there’s a court decision standing in the way. The Blaine Amendment.
But, in the meantime, he has a Department of Education that is open to school options, and they’re doing everything they can everywhere they can to make sure that the poor person is not subjected to a failing school anymore. We have some positive things to report as well, including in the black community. …
Sears: That’s right.
Walton: Well, one of the things you did powerfully [in an unsuccessful 2018 write-in campaign for U.S. Senate] was you linked abortion to 23 million black babies that were killed. … Margaret Sanger, she founded Planned Parenthood, and she said, “Colored people are like human weeds and need to be exterminated.”
Parker: Barack Obama was the first sitting president to actually address them at their national conference, and then at the end of his speech say, “God bless you, Planned Parenthood.”
Sears: Planned Parenthood.
Parker: The eugenicists are the environmentalists; we should not even use either term in a sentence separate from each other. When you think about what’s coming out of the mouths of these environmentalists today, it is exactly what the eugenicists believe and is exactly what liberals believe in.
Walton: Amplify, I’m not sure I understand.
Parker: Environmentalists really believe that we’re running out of resources, so they want the people that are the weakest …
Sears: Because we’ve only got 12 years, according to them, I guess. It’s 11 by now. It’s so ridiculous, it is absolutely. … If we’re not building houses or anything like that for those who look like me to live in, because people look like you already have your house and that sort of thing.
That doesn’t help black people, it helps us being stuck in poor neighborhoods, filthy neighborhoods, that sort of thing. The environmentalists are not really our friends, and I think we know that. But, unfortunately, we just can’t seem to pull the lever sometimes.
Walton: Well, environmentalism is incredibly elitist.
Sears: It’s very.
Walton: It’s not only true here, it’s true everywhere.
Parker: Well, that’s what I’m saying. The housing policy is a very different question, so I wouldn’t want anyone to get confused that this is the same question, what’s happening with the environmentalists and what’s happening with basic supply-and-demand opportunity regarding housing.
It is a fact that we’ve reached a point a couple of years ago as a society where we have more non-married adults than married. When you need two of anything, you’re going to …
But there is a point that I would like to make on this environmental question, because it’s extremely important for people to understand … the housing debate. Eugenicists and environmentalists are the same people. When you are an elite that believes that you have a limited amount of resources, then you do not want people draining those resources.
They feel that if you are weak, you get into your quote about Margaret [Sanger] saying, “If you have a disability, if you have any type of economic instability, if you are old,” this is why we now have several states who have actually legalized assisted suicide. Make no mistake, these are the environmentalist and these are the liberals, these are the progressives, these are the Democrats. I just wanted to really make that point because I think it’s very, very important …
Sears: That’s an excellent point. It’s an excellent point.
Parker: … that people understand that they’re the same as the Margaret Sanger types. …
Walton: we are talking about the links between environmentalism and …
Walton: Eugenicism. And fascinating.
Parker: Oh, well, it’s true. Because when you think about it, and the original question about God: Oh, well, really? Is he going to run out of natural resources? How, you know, it’s just fascinating that Bill Gates and his foundation, why are they in the 50 African countries trying to promote their abortion?
Walton: Well, the people who believe we’re going to run out of resources are the same people who think we’re going to run out of human ingenuity. …We’re surrounded by things that we’ve invented and we’re going to keep [saying], “OK, we’ve got this problem. We’re going to do something to deal with it, and then the market will work.”
Sears: Yeah, they first told us that the planet was actually cooling, remember that? Back in the early ’70s, and I guess that didn’t pan out. I don’t know, where we are in the grand scheme of things is they tell us what things are. But when I read my Bible, I read differently, so I’m fine with where I’m at.
I’d like to see, when we talk about black representation and we look at the places where black people are, where the mayors … the senators or the local reps were on city council. We look at our communities, and they told us that when they became, or when we became, the majority, when we were in office, that things would change.
I’m seeing what’s happening in the neighborhoods, the black neighborhoods, in New Jersey. You hear a few noises here and there about things, but Democrats are in charge and they’ve been in charge, and who’s holding them accountable? That’s the sort of thing that we talk about. Now, we’re not going to win everybody, but we’ll win some and then we’ll move on.
Walton: One of the striking things about the policies that affected marriage, employment, business ownership, schools, the policies that were aimed at the inner city … [are] now spread out to rural white America. … These bad ideas, forget about race, it’s just they’re … bad for people.
Parker: That’s why I don’t talk about it in terms of race at all.
Walton: I don’t think we should.
Parker: We shouldn’t, because when you think about the policies of the left, and to your point, it’s why we have books. Even with social thinkers like [political scientist] Charles Murray having to say we are coming apart, where are we healthy as a society? It’s when husbands are married to the mother of the children.
Walton: It’s a universal truth.
Parker: It’s a universal truth. When demographers like myself, when you look at the data and you try to find “Is race a component, first point, on crime and low educational aspirations?” If you are coming from a single head of household, your tendencies are more increased to go into crime and/or have lower educational aspirations. Seventy-five percent of young boys in our criminal justice system come from single head of households. But when you look at data …
Walton: Regardless of race.
Parker: Regardless of race, there’s just disproportion because the family collapsed first.
Walton: It’s the pathology, yeah.
Parker: In the ’60s, black marital rates were at 70%. Today, they’re at 30%. You can’t have 30% of your adult population married and wonder why your kids don’t know what to do. What has happened, though, when you look at the white family compared to the black family, let’s just look at family and income levels. When you’re looking at husbands married to mothers of children, black household, white household, … guess what we cannot measure? Economic differences, educational differences, crime differences.
You know why? Because they’re so small. They’re like really small. It doesn’t matter what color you are, but when you have a single [parent] household, guess what, we can measure and guess where the big gap is? Wealth, because you have a disproportionate number of single households on this side of that, you have less on this side.
But to your point, the more that that white family unravels, we see the same social pathologies. … That’s why we’re seeing opiates, we’re seeing incredible rates of suicide with white males. We’re seeing white males taking out their anger on their neighbors and shooting them down. This is a problem, so I’m glad that you brought it up.
This has nothing to do with race. The left keeps us focused on race. The left keeps talking about … what blacks are doing and what black lives and black this and black that. No, that’s their language. If we start thinking about the founding principles of this country, [it’s] to be responsible with your choices. If we start thinking about the rule of law outlined in our Constitution, and we start educating our children accordingly to where husbands marry the mother of their children, you will start seeing some of these other pathologies dissipate almost overnight.
Sears: I was just in Louisiana and the taxicab driver’s black, he’s listening to a black station, and he’s taking me back to the airport. They have their race is coming up, the Democratic governor and two Republicans are in that race for the governorship. John Bel Edwards is the incumbent.
The thing about it was that the radio station, the commercial was so vitriolic, the Democrat commercial sponsored by black somebody, some organization, was so vitriolic against the Republican, not the Republican candidate, the Republican Party. What they were spewing, and I have to say spewing because it’s poison and it keeps us in our place. We’re not talking about race, but they’re talking about race so we …
Parker: All the time, endlessly.
Sears: … have to say some things about that because we have to have answers for all that. We have to have an answer to it …
Walton: My frame for policy is three questions: What works, what’s moral, what makes people happy? If you took off all the values that you all have been talking about, they’re conservative values, essentially, they’re kind of bougie values. When you get married, you stay married, you get a job, you save, you do all those sorts of things. …
Parker: I think that that’s where we’re going in this discussion that we’ve been having over the last two years with this election. It sounds noisy because of impeachment and other things that are getting in the way of us finding out why America seems to be sinking back to its founding principles.
When you look at the couple of cases that the Supreme Court just decided, that they’re going to take on with the new seatings there, I’m very hopeful that we are going to get beyond this, trying to pretend that race is the driver of this. As we’re now watching the white and the majority community collapse because of these same policies and values. … And then the argument always is, “Well, which came first, the public policy or the culture?” This has been a constant, culture policy.
I don’t believe that we would have 68 million abortions if [the] policy didn’t change. We can pretend that the culture wanted this and it forced policy, but I’m just not sure. I’m still in great debate about did policy change this? I’m not sure that we would see black … marriage rates collapse the way they had if policy hadn’t changed. Where it said, “Don’t marry if you want help financially from Uncle Sam.”
I’m not sure that we would see a lot of these challenges that we’re having today if policy didn’t change, including education policy. It’s an education policy that traps poor children in failing schools. It’s government that’s paying Planned Parenthood to diminish the size of this community. I think it’s sad to see what’s happening with the majority community now, collapsing so and unraveling to the place that it is.
But I’m hopeful that not only does it open us up to this discussion, so the majority of Americans don’t think, “Well, it’s just those people over there, so we don’t have to think about it as long as they don’t come to our community.” But we also can be hopeful because the courts have changed.
Sears: We talk about hope, and we had someone who was going to give us hope and change. Well, when I look at someone like Kanye [West], I may not agree with everything about him. … When I heard him say recently so very emphatically, “Are you telling me that I have to vote for somebody just because of my color?” He didn’t care what you said. …
Parker: This is one thing to be liberal and conservative, [but I] don’t want a bunch of these Democrats becoming Republican if they’re bringing their values with them.
Sears: No, I don’t want that, either. … There’s hope.
Walton: There is hope.
Sears: There’s always hope. … I see it in the people that I talk to, I see it when someone comes up and says to me, “Keep doing what you’re doing.” On Facebook, they troll me. But it’s cool, I’m all right with it. I know that you may not like what’s going on, but there are other people who are wanting to say, “Well, tell me more.”
Parker: That’s right.
Sears: I may not win them …
Parker: We don’t need a lot of helpers.
Sears: Yeah, we don’t need. I may not win them this time around, but next time–but it gives them something to think about. That’s what we want.
Walton: This is incredible. We have to wrap, we’re done.
Parker: We solved all the problems in the world.
Walton: Well, we’re getting closer and closer and closer. Let’s come back and keep going with this.