By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter
CHARLOTTE— Today, the Democratic National convention is set to begin in Charlotte, NC. Many of Alabama’s democratic leadership will be on hand in the queen city this week to echo President Obama’s message “Forward.” We were able to reach state Senator Bobby Singleton (D-Greensboro) by phone on Monday. “We are all excited to be here in North Carolina to re-nominate President Obama for four more years so we can continue to move our country forward,” said Singleton. “I think most people understand that we are going to be offering the country something different from the republicans, especially for the middle class.”
Singleton continued, “Our party represents people, all people and not just the fat cats that sit at the top,” Singleton said. “We are the party of inclusion, no matter where you come from, we want to help all people have a brighter future not just a few.”
Singleton went on the talk about how he sees the democratic party as a place where all are welcome and offered opportunity and not just when the cameras are rolling at convention time.
“I believe that in the heart of real Americans there is a desire to get beyond race and the things that divide us, but those voices of inclusion are being drowned out by fear,” said Singleton. He says there are those who said that the President is a divider, “he is not the divider in this country.”
“The people who came out to elect the first African-American President of this country were holding fast to the real principles of true American values,” said Singleton. “But there are those who have done everything in their power to turn back the clock to 50 years ago and many people have become afraid to speak out against them. We talk about them, but we don’t speak out loudly against them.” He thinks that there has been an organized effort to denigrate and call un-American every effort of the president, and he believes that the other side has wanted to cause fear in those who would speak up. “It is a true saying that all it takes for evil to prevail is for good men and women to do nothing,” says Singleton. “But we can’t be afraid to say we want an America that is inclusive not divisive.”
Singleton says that once upon a time the republican party was the party of Lincoln. That it was the home of Americans of African heritage but that party moved away from the black voter and so they had to come looking for another home. “Even though the democrats didn’t open their arms as wide as we had hoped, people like FDR and John Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson did open the party to us,” said Singleton. “It is sad, but the racial and social gap between the parties has just continued to grow and we seem more divided than ever.”
Singleton says he still has great hopes for Alabama and America and believes that the convention in Charlotte will show the country a choice between moving forward together or backwards divided.