Is President Obama Neglecting African-Americans?
Tavis Smiley sounds off
- Duration 4:09
- Date Jan 9, 2012
Tavis Smiley sounds off
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Welcome back everyone to have a smiling you know that name well guess what he will no longer be the keynote speaker at the annual Martin Luther King luncheon in Peoria his appearance was canceled.
After he criticized President Obama for ignoring poor African Americans.
Here discuss is PBS television host and the author of fail up.
Have a smiling good morning to you.
The white rich and happy new attitude having your Hughes well all right -- -- been on this program before and you have criticized the president.
You believe that he hasn't done enough to raise up -- poor people in the African American community but let's just say -- Recently.
That -- the -- of folks decide to can't see it just recent.
I have no idea you got to have the Peoria -- and -- not spoken to him I learned a long time ago in this business of trying.
To tell the truth about the suffering I believe that it is the telling the truth.
That -- suffering to speak and we you're trying to tell -- -- that is on behalf of those who are politically and economically and culturally and socially disenfranchise sometimes you going to be challenged sometimes you -- with -- sometimes without merit.
But I have a first remember right to free speech full don't have to agree or like what embrace everything I say and that's their choice and.
So here's the statement from the event organizer in Peoria -- brown the dean and the -- over the last few days that people were upset about comments it's had a smiley had made comments.
That we weren't.
Aware I think he started to get critical of the president was it not when he did some of those town hall meetings across the country and you felt like he didn't go.
To cities were African America is -- African Americans were losing out on jobs.
I would -- tweak I would tweak or change one word out I don't see my role is one of criticizing the president -- marveled at one upholding the president this.
And every other president accountable Clinton bush bush any -- and I think have to be held accountable by those of us who think and look we think are calling is.
Doing a public service to speak truth to power and to the power less -- I've not been criticizing the president I've been tried to hold the president accountable.
What I think ought to be an agenda that can advance the country again what I say it.
Bob that particular got -- -- -- -- do not know but something is wrong in this country let me just say right quick.
That's so often the political right and I am no different -- the political -- in this country you well know having been on this program before.
But so -- the political right Gretchen gets accused of playing the game up political correctness what this underscores is that goes on the left that Democrats can play the game.
Up political correctness has well and -- six people you've got 15100 people -- bought tickets to come to an event and six people.
Want their tickets back and they end up dropping the entire event.
That's that that's that's a quintessential example of political correctness and we have got to do better than that in this country particularly in an election year.
Well thank you for point -- -- fair and balanced nature of PC in our society.
By the way you're gonna host your own event then at George Washington University is called remaking America this Thursday night.
This -- tonight there's not enough conversation in this country about poverty when one out of two Americans is out in poverty or near poverty this issue has got to be fun center and in this presidential race the last time around in three presidential debates McCain Obama did not mention the word poverty look for the moderator didn't raise it.
We cannot go -- at this critical time with all these popping numbers so compelling.
We cannot go to another campaign for the White House -- without talking about poverty.
On Thursday night so I want C span we're going to be talking about poverty in this country so would you agree with Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich then -- he.
Calls this president the food stamp president.
Speaker Gingrich is a thoughtful individual I've known him for years I've had great conversation with him public.
And private but when he goes to this level of of a base campaigning to appeal to votes when he's now fallen behind.
I think it doesn't represent the best of him -- the Republican Party but it's not just mr.
Paul when they make these kinds of statements demonizing the -- war.
And rendering them invisible and basically -- starting a horrible war against -- for it doesn't advance the party doesn't advance the country.
Right had a -- and that's -- luck with your events are you won't be speaking at the other one.
Now people can find you and George Washington University this Thursday night thanks much for joining us thanks Gretchen.