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C.L Bryant: It’s Time for Some Real Talk During the Pandemic

President Trump made the well-being of black Americans a priority from the very beginning of his administration, and the Trump Campaign reflects that same spirit of commitment to lift all Americans up as members of one growing nation.

Before this virus arrived in our country from China, there was an increasing recognition in the black community that President Trump’s leadership had led to the greatest economic prosperity for all Americans in history. Now an invisible enemy has brought us to the point where $1,200 relief payments to most Americans to prevent the economy from declining precipitously.

It will take the same steady hand to guide the reopening of America in a way that returns us to that path as quickly as possible. Therefore, the pandemic has made it more important than ever to get involved in the effort to re-elect Donald J. Trump.

Even though we must sit in our homes, unable to organize in public at this crucial moment, we can still organize anyway, and that starts with getting on the same page. That’s why the Black Voices for Trump coalition launched its “Real Talk” initiative while social distancing measures began to take hold.

Real Talk consisted of live call-ins with leading black voices in the Trump coalition, including Dr. Alveda King, Hermain Cain, the Hodge Twins, and more. In addition to a national call, we held targeted calls for voters in Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Michigan, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Wisconsin.

It’s an adaptive strategy that’s yielding real results. More than one million Americans participate in live video show we broadcast. In just one month, the campaign added more than a quarter of a million new volunteers and made more than 17 million calls to voters.

Expanding these efforts specifically to the black community makes great sense for the future of the country. Under President Trump’s leadership, as everyone should know, we’ve achieved the lowest black unemployment in history. There’s more to the story, though. The income gap between white and black unemployment also reached its lowest point ever under this administration, and black household incomes grew dramatically closer to the national median. In my own state of Louisiana, the unemployment gap between white and black Louisianans fell from 5.9 percent to 4.8 percent over the first three years under President Trump.

Re-electing this President isn’t simply about prosperity in absolute terms — it’s about black workers, businesses, and families who are finally able to participate fully in an economic boom.

The good times, unfortunately, are temporarily on hold, but black concerns will remain at the very center of the national agenda so long as Donald Trump remains in the White House. It’s evident not only in his economic agenda, but in other policies as well.

This administration has provided the most federal funding ever to save and invigorate Historically Black Colleges and Universities. The FIRST STEP Act, which President Trump championed, is the boldest step yet towards reducing inequality in the criminal justice system and returning dignity and hope to the black communities that have borne the brunt of harsh sentencing laws and overzealous, discriminatory drug law enforcement — in Louisiana, for instance, black citizens were 3.4 times more likely to be arrested for marijuana possession than white residents between 2010 and 2018.

Those three years of bold decisions in the White House have convinced me that if we want black America’s concerns to be kept at the forefront throughout the coming recovery from the coronavirus pandemic, we must re-elect President Trump. There’s no better way to ensure that outcome than by getting involved with Black Voices for Trump by tuning in to Real Talk and other BVT projects.

Cleon Lewis Bryant is a Baptist minister and former radio and television host based in his native Shreveport, Louisiana. Formerly, Bryant was the president of the NAACP chapter in Garland, TX and a Senior Fellow with D.C.-based Freedom Works.

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