by Christopher Arps, Oklahoma City Conservative Examiner
In the past, whenever I met a fellow African American Republican or conservative, it was always a bitter sweet moment for me. On the one hand, I was elated to meet another African American who shared my cultural values and view of the role of government in our lives, but the elation subsided rather quickly when the realization set in that there wasn’t an efficient mechanism to connect them with my conservative African American friends from around the country, or vice versa. There are millions of us out here! John McCain only received 2% of the African American vote, but how many millions of African Americans does that translate too? That was the initial purpose of organizing the Move-On-Up.org social network; to have a centralized meeting place for us to network, share ideas, and let the closet Republicans and conservatives among us know that they are not alone.
The second purpose of this site is to grow a true grassroots, un-bureaucratic organization that will be a force on the national scene to advance our agenda within the party and in the national debate. I do not consider myself the leader of this social network. I would much rather prefer that every member of this network take ownership for this site’s success and it’s mission to empower ordinary individuals to do extraordinary things. That is what true grassroots activism should be all about.
Most of us will attest that the outreach efforts by the Republican Party have been pretty anemic at best. Past history tells us that they’re probably not going to improve much in the future, especially now that an African American will be our next president, and Hispanics now comprise the largest minority group in America. To be candid, the party is somewhat justified in ignoring us because we bring nothing to the table; no organized numbers, no ability to raise large sums of money. In politics, numbers and money are the squeaky wheels that gets your cause attention, not your past loyalties. We have a choice. We can either continue to complain and keep experiencing neglect during and after the campaign season, or, we can build an organization that literally has hundreds of thousands of members and that advances our agenda due to its sheer size and influence.
A third purpose of this site is to find tomorrow’s future leaders and candidates for elected office at the local, state and federal levels. I envision in the very near future, a Move-On-Up.org 501c4 PAC that will provide needed funds so that these candidates can wage credible campaigns. I also envision the PAC being heavily involved with issue advocacy through the use of 30 second videos and the new media. The late Missouri State Representative Sherman Parker wrote in 2005 about the need to elect more African American Republicans to expand the base of the party.
In future posts, I will expound further on my ideas and vision I have for Move-On-Up.org, I heartily encourage other conservative and moderate African Americans to spread the word and invite others! Be relevant. Join the revolution. Make history!