source: Linda Bentley – September 5, 2017
CAVE CREEK – It’s been 10 years since we met with Ward Connerly, who founded the American Civil Rights Institute (ACRI) with Dusty Rhodes (president of National Review) in 1996, when he announced plans to have the Arizona Civil Rights Initiative (AzCRI) placed on the 2008 ballot.
It was modeled after the California Civil Rights Initiative, which passed with 54 percent of the vote, to end the practice of government-sponsored race and gender preferences in public employment, public education and public contracting.
Arizona Supreme Court Justice Clint Bolick, who, at the time, was director of the Goldwater Institute for Constitutional Litigation and the initiative’s legal advisor, stated, “It’s time for Arizona to stop increasing the number of people who are given preferences because of race.”
Bolick said, “Racial preferences don’t work and harm the very people claimed to benefit from them.”
However, in September 2008, the Arizona Secretary of State’s Office (SOS) issued its official determination that the AzCRI did not qualify for the ballot and sent the ballots and publicity pamphlets off to be printed without Proposition 104, as the initiative was officially known, which AzCRI Executive Director Max McPhail claimed violated state statute.
State statute allows all petition filers 10 days to challenge the SOS’s signature count.
Although Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Edward O. Burke granted a temporary restraining order to halt the printing of ballots and publicity pamphlets, he found himself in a quandary of having to infringe the rights of those submitting petitions or hold up the printing of ballots and pamphlets, which, according to Maricopa County Elections Director Karen Osborne’s testimony, would delay voting by an equal number of days printing were to be delayed.
Burke was left to only question how the legislature managed to create such a situation.
Because the time allotted to verify over 330,000 signatures was deemed inadequate, Connerly withdrew the challenge and Proposition 104 was never placed on the ballot in Arizona.
A disappointed McPhail said the AzCRI would have made Arizona a place of equal opportunity for all instead of one that uses discrimination as a tool to create “diversity.”
He said, “Achieving diversity should never be an excuse to discriminate.”
Back in 2007, Connerly, as a dedicated champion for a colorblind America, stated, “Getting our nation to a point of applying a single standard to all Americans is one of the most crucial issues of our time … we must start by getting our government out of the business of privileging some citizens over others. Real lives are radically affected, and great social and economic injustice is done when decisions are made about individuals based on the color of their skin or the origin of their ancestors.”
The late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia stated government can never have a “compelling interest in discriminating on the basis of race to ‘make up’ for past racial discrimination in the opposite direction. Under the Constitution there can be no such thing as either a creditor or debtor race. We are just one race in the eyes of government – the American race.”
Connerly continues to press on with his fight and issued a statement last month in which he points out, “As a nation, our flight to a better society has entered a patch of very severe turbulence; and, as is all-too-often the case, the matter of race is a major factor. Most significantly, it appears that hysteria has overwhelmed reason, a fact that is enabling a form of mob rule, with historical monuments being destroyed, and political demagogues exploiting our circumstances for their own benefit.”
Connerly goes on to note while our nation is most in need of bold and decisive leadership, “the man we have elected to lead us has been politically gelded by those who reject his presidency and who are determined to defeat him.”
Connerly pondered what must happen in our beloved country before we realize that “subdividing Americans into numerous tribes and then distributing benefits on the basis of tribal affiliation is a recipe for social and civic disaster.”
He concluded, “The evidence is compelling that for the sake of our national sanity, we need to alter course and squeeze race from American life. It is truly poisonous to the body politic!”
Believing all affirmative action programs should be ended and all government forms soliciting information about race should be shredded, Connerly stated, “If President Trump wants to make America ‘great again,’ that mission won’t be fulfilled until all that matters about a citizen’s identity is that he or she is American.”
Mychal Massie, an ordained minister and chairman of the Racial Policy Center, a think tank he founded in September 2015, is also an advocate for a colorblind society.
Last week Massie penned an article, “Black is a color: Not a race” in which he states, “Being black is not a human condition, albeit that is what many today treat it as … being recognized as a skin color is the antithesis of unifying the fabric of the United States.”
Massie goes on to say, “The overwhelming majority of those who possess large amounts of melanin, i.e., blacks, do not live in America as Americans; they live in America as a color. They demand to be identified by their melanin content and yet they are offended for being recognized by same.”
Believing it is the “hyper-fixation upon melanin content” that divides us as a nation, not some “orchestrated evil perpetrated by malevolent white men,” Massie states, “The word minority is insulting and stigmatizing. I am an American. There are 330 plus million Americans, how can I be a minority if I am an American? Why would I want to be portrayed as something less than the whole of America?”
Massie finds the African-American title ludicrous as it is perpetrated upon children because an ancestor came over on a boat 400 years ago and says it forces them to be what they are not.
He said, “They are Americans, not Africans.”
Massie concludes, “To that end the idea of ‘hyphenated Americanism’ is a trick of the cultural Marxists intended to divide America against itself for the purposes of weakening our autonomy and anesthetizing us to globalism.”
As far as the census goes, Massie believes it should only ask “American: yes or no; and male or female.”
ACRI is a national civil rights nonprofit organization created to educate the public on the harms of racial and gender preferences.
The organization’s website states “ACRI also seeks to affect a cultural change by challenging the ‘race matters’ mentality embraced by many of today’s so-called ‘civil rights leaders.’ ACRI’s leaders and supporters believe that civil rights are individual rights and that government policies should not advocate group rights over individual rights.”