BREAKOUT STAR Wright.
“I think Democrats have co-opted our history. . . the narrative about which party really did most for blacks,” Crystal Wright said.
It was October 2012 and she was on Fox News’ Fox & Friends, commenting on the backlash toward black actress Stacey Dash for tweeting, “Vote Romney. The only choice for your future.”
“There’s a real war going on that the left is waging on black conservatives; they want to silence us,” Wright said. Later, she added, “I never read the black memo that said that I have to be a Democrat.” Onscreen, under her name, was the description, “EDITOR, CONSERVATIVEBLACKCHICK.COM.”
The Fox & Friends visit was one of Wright’s many recent appearances on TV (CSPAN, CNN, BET) and in other media outlets (The Guardian, New York magazine, washingtonpost.com). A PR consultant by day, she is an increasingly visible pundit who, shortly after Mitt Romney lost the 2012 election, started her own political action committee called “Conservative Melting Pot PAC.” Rhode Island’s Roosevelt Society — which will host Wright Sunday, June 23 to kick off their Inspiration Lecture Series — calls her a “breakout star.”
The Society, itself, is in need of some introduction, too. Founded in April by recently announced 2014 Republican Providence mayoral candidate, Dr. Dan Harrop, it is “a coalition of right-leaning groups and individuals who are trying to ‘raise the bar’ of center-right politics here in Rhode Island,” says treasurer Barbara Ann Fenton.
The name, she says, isn’t a nod to FDR or his wife, Eleanor, but to Teddy Roosevelt, a man who preached “the exercise of intelligent forethought and of decisive action sufficiently far in advance of any likely crisis.”
We caught up with Ms. Wright — whose Twitter bio reads “Buster of stereotypes!” — over the phone before her trip to the Ocean State. The conversation has been edited and condensed.
WHAT IS YOUR VERSION OF THE NARRATIVE ABOUT WHICH PARTY HAS DONE THE MOST FOR BLACKS? It’s a short narrative. All people have to do is go back and look at history. When we had the Civil War, it was southern Democrats fighting for secession from the Union. If you look back at the history of America, slavery was the economy; it helped push the agriculture economy in the South of Southern Democrats. Period. And it was Republicans who fought. . . to end slavery. Lincoln [a Republican]. . . freed the slaves with the Emancipation Proclamation. Lincoln had a moral repugnance to slavery.
During Reconstruction…the first blacks elected to congress were all black Republicans. Because it was Republicans that were out there, encouraging people to vote. We [got] the 13th, 14th, 15th, amendments passed by Republicans. And then once Republicans lost control of Congress, you had all these kind of rights that that they fought for for blacks being rolled back, rolled back, and rolled back. And the KKK, at the time, came to rise because they wanted to destroy black Republicans getting elected in the South.