Stewart Acuff

Oct 5

The Great Debrief

As we all debrief the debate, and express well-deserved disappointment in the President’s performance, I’d like to offer just two mitigating points.

First, the worst disaster that would have cost him the election would have been to look like the angry Black man. Admittedly, he could have called Romney on his bullshit without seeming angry or over the top, but care is critical. Stan Johnson and I saw Harold Ford, Jr. lose the Tennessee Senate campaign in large part because he got angry and confronted his opponent. Romney was so over the top, out of control, and possessed by WHITE MALE PRIVILEGE. Romney was determined to get the white man’s due. This problem can be fixed and David Axelrod is probably the best in the country to work on this. But there is a different standard for Black candidates and office holders. Let’s not forget how remarkable one term is.

Second, Romney behaved with absolutely no integrity. The President had every right to expect a debate based on the truth, the real policies. Romney showed just how slimy he is, how dangerous he is, what he would do to our folks, our people, our members, America’s workers.

A brilliant politician and a real grassroots movement swept Barack Obama into the White House four years ago.

Hope is a decision, not a feeling. Faith is a decision, not a feeling. Hope and faith inspire action. Action creates change.

It ain’t up to one man. It’s up to all of us.
Let’s get it on. We know how to do this.


Stewart Acuff is America’s best-known and foremost labor organizer. He is the former organizing Director of the AFL-CIO. Acuff has also written two books: Playing Bigger Than You Are: A Life in Organizing, and Getting America Back to Work, coauthored by Dr. Richard Levins.

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