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Star Parker

Founder & President, Center for Urban Renewal and Education

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Sen. Tim Scott can move America past race-based politics

May 26, 2023

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Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., the only Black Republican in the Senate, has joined the 2024 GOP presidential campaign. Scott, who has spoken of getting pulled over by the police more than half a dozen times in one year, once said in an interview, “Racism is real.” And yet Scott characterizes America as “a land of opportunity, not a land of oppression.

According to Straight Arrow News contributor Star Parker, Scott’s optimistic message will move the nation away from divisive identity politics and toward American ideals of exceptionalism.

Would Tim Scott’s presidency offer an opportunity to cut through appearances and bear witness to the realities that America is in? Yes. He has written and spoken of American exceptionalism through his whole life. Meanwhile, race awareness and politics will no doubt continue through 2024. The way that we’re seeing the Left and what the progressives do on race matters — oh, we can be looking forward to an incredibly difficult summer next year. 

But it is 2025 that we look to as a potential for a new path forward as many Republican candidates are now in these primaries, as well as Tim Scott being there to share his ideas and thoughts on policies and on principles. Whoever rises out of this arena must be one of strength and unity. He or she must be the opposing force to the Left’s division that they’ve been spreading throughout our everyday lives. We need a president that takes us beyond the identity of appearance and towards the identity of those deeply-rooted American ideals of exceptionalism that we must never forget about.

So Senator Tim Scott of South Carolina has entered the race for President of the United States. 

 

And underneath that line, in most news across the country on this subject, you will of course see a little note of him being Black. While the prospects and hopes of Scott’s candidacy have only just begun, if he were to win, that, of course, would make him our nation’s second Black president. When Barack Obama won the presidency and became America’s first Black president, that’s if you don’t count Bill Clinton, it was widely viewed that Barack Obama as a candidate and a president would have set America on a new course, a turning point in American history. 

 

Many thought that at least and at last, the era of racial politics had come to an end. They thought, wow, we can be a United States of America. With his election, the conventional wisdom and thinking was that we would move on from all of this national obsession with race, that we will move on to deal with issues confronting every American regardless of their race. As we are now all well aware, that, of course did not happen. The American people twice chose Obama as their president. Today, perhaps more than ever, racial awareness and politics permeates our everyday realities. And it’s not looking good from a Black perspective, or from a white perspective. 

 

They’re in every political institution. Race matters. They’re in every university, every elementary school. We see them in everything, the sports we watch, in our TV shows, and the movies that we attempt to enjoy. Racial division and identity politics is everywhere. 

 

You know, when I was on a flight, just a couple of years ago, a stewardess with a Black Lives Matters mask came up to me and spoke to me about how she supports me. She’s so supportive. I used to just be another passenger on the plane, but racial awareness has now made everybody so conscious of it that even when you’re 35,000 feet above our land, you have to now move into identity politics and have blonde blues walk up to you and tell you how wonderful you are and how much they appreciate BLM. It’s for these reasons that Tim Scott is not just another candidate, he is a Black candidate. And why I am adamantly opposed to identity politics, it is worth noting that a Scott presidency would bring the opportunity to really move past such racial awareness that we all thought Obama would help us through.

 

Early in Obama’s first term, he traveled to Europe for a NATO meeting. You probably remember that. In the press conference after, he was asked by a reporter if he believed in American exceptionalism. Well, for Obama to say yes, would have been for him to state in this international forum that there is something unique and special about his country that sets it above others. 

 

Obama’s finely-tuned political skills immediately kicked into the forum. He answered in the most politically correct way possible. Oh, yeah, I believe in American exceptionalism, he said, just as the Brits believe in British exceptionalism, and the Greeks in Greek exceptionalism

 

Now he forgot to say that America — why it’s so exceptional — is because we are the exception to the rule of the Greeks and the Brits, that anyone from any background, any ethnicity that’s in this country, would be able to excel as he and his family did. 

 

And it’s why his presidency changed nothing regarding race relationships, because he couldn’t say it. He could not even tell his own story in that international forum.

 

Would Tim Scott’s presidency offer an opportunity to cut through appearances and bear witness to the realities that America is in? Yes. He has written and spoken of American exceptionalism through his whole life. Meanwhile, race awareness and politics will no doubt continue through 2024. The way that we’re seeing the left and what the progressives do on race matters, oh, we can be looking forward to an incredibly difficult summer next year. 

 

But it is 2025 that we look to as a potential for a new path forward as many Republican candidates are now in these primaries, as well as Tim Scott being there to share his ideas and thoughts on policies and on principles. Whoever rises out of this arena must be one of strength and unity. He or she must be the opposing force to the less division that they’ve been spreading throughout our everyday lives. We need a president that takes us beyond the identity of appearance and towards the identity of those deeply-rooted American ideals of exceptionalism that we must never forget about.

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