Assessment of President Barack Obama´s 2011 State of the Union Address

By June 7, 2011 September 6th, 2013 Commentaries/Opinions

The Shirley Chisholm Presidential Accountability Commission

Assessment of President Barack Obama´s 2011 State of the Union Address

Preface

The principal mission of the Shirley Chisholm Presidential Accountability Commission is to continuously monitor and evaluate the policy priorities and legislative proposals of presidential administrations in relationship to the needs, issues, vital interests  and aspirations of people of African descent in the U.S. and globally.  Drawing from policy priorities of various constituencies, organizations and agencies within the Black community, the objective of the Commission is to assess how presidential administrations respond to or implement a Black Agenda.  The Commission asserts its prerogative to perform this function within the context of an American body politic where a wide range of interest groups mobilize, organize and lobby to advance their goals. This function is particularly important given the long history of the “color line,” prejudice, bigotry and structural/institutional racism, as a major impediment to  social, economic and political progress of Black people in the country. The Commission certainly acknowledges the significance of the election of the first African American President as a milestone in the history of the United States.  However, the virulent, negative reaction to President Obama by segments of our society is symptomatic of a racial subtext to some of the fierce policy debates raging in Washington.  In this regard, the “State of Emergency” afflicting millions of Black poor and working people, strongly indicates the urgent need for vigilance in monitoring how this and future administrations devise policies designed to  achieve justice and full equality for people of African descent in America.

It is also important to note that while the Commission derives information and policy recommendations from a variety of sources, ultimately its Assessments and Report Cards are formulated based on  the perspective that government has a definitive role and  affirmative obligation to advance policies and programs to eradicate  discrimination based on race, gender, religion, sexual orientation or age, to protect the public from excesses of corporations and private interests within a Capitalist economy, to promote social and economic  inclusion, equity/parity and  to facilitate/enable people in this country to realize a quality standard of living.

Process for Developing the Assessment

IBW21

About IBW21

IBW21 (The Institute of the Black World 21st Century) is committed to building the capacity of Black communities in the U.S. to work for the social, political, economic and cultural upliftment, the development of the global Black community and an enhanced quality of life for all marginalized people.