Commentary: Be informed. Be enlightened. Be more than woke.

Commentary: Be informed. Be enlightened.  Be more than woke.
May 03
02:00 2018

By Frederick Adams II

Dear “Woke” People: 

Stop it. 

You blame Barack Obama for not doing more for black people, which always makes me wonder what type of expectations you realistically had for him.  He was president, not a dictator, who faced unprecedented obstruction tactics during his presidency.  Do you remember?

During the 2016 presidential election, your diehard commitment to disruptive rebellion was absurd.  Many of you proudly and foolishly encouraged people not to vote or to vote for Jill Stein or Gary Johnson, candidates with no genuine chance of winning, because you just could not stomach the idea of Hillary Clinton being President. 

I understood your reservations with electing another Clinton.  The black community largely ignored Bill Clinton’s role in mass incarceration, and Hillary once cruelly and insensitively labeled young black offenders as “super predators.”  Those factors served as the primary reasons I supported Bernie Sanders. 

However, Bernie lost and I pivoted because not voting was not an option, and a much larger problem loomed near the White House’s entrance.  That problem was more dangerous than any Clinton.  However, your irrationality outweighed your common sense and failed to realize how much damage one bad president could do. 

The midterm elections are near, and the 2020 presidential election is approaching, and Kanye West is writing love messages to Donald Trump on Twitter.  Here you come, supporting Kanye for his “free-thinking” opinions, lending credence to the falsehood that Trump is not doing such a horrible job. 

Have you not learned anything?  Or are you willing and ready to mislead our people again?

Our people need guidance coupled with truth and not your distorted version of the truth.

You need to be more than “woke.” Be informed. Be enlightened. Be educated about Constitutional law, the separation of powers, and the appointment of a United States Supreme Court justice.  Learn how Supreme Court cases are decided, and the enormous impact these decisions have.

Educate yourselves by understanding these Supreme Court decisions happen because of the presiding justices during a particular time in history, and that presidents nominate justices for lifetime appointments, ensuring that a president’s legacy will far outlive the term to which he is elected. Understand that Supreme Court decisions then become law, and decades may pass before the harm and injustices of those decisions are overruled and reversed.  Show people how to identify real election issues and the impact, consequences, and likely results depending on which candidate wins. 

Until you are earnestly committed to that mission, I urge you to refrain from your counter-productive, pseudo-intellectual posturing because educating our people involves teaching them that politics and voting are not about electing perfect candidates.

There are no perfect candidates, and sometimes, voting is about avoiding catastrophic disaster. Otherwise, you are only doing them a disservice by encouraging them not to vote or by brainwashing them into believing that there is no palpable difference between two candidates.

I welcome debating, vetting, and meaningful inquiries of all political candidates, but stirring the pot just for the sake of stirring is tired, pointless, and only creates chaos and further unnecessary division and confusion within our community. So if you plan on stirring the pot, at least make sure it has some broth, some meat and maybe some vegetables in it.

Otherwise, you aren’t really that “woke.” 

Frederick Adams is a criminal defense and personal injury attorney who lives and works in Winston-Salem.  In addition to practicing law, he also serves as an adjunct professor at Winston-Salem State University.

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