Yesterday the Republican National Committee (RNC) elected Michael Steele as its chairman but don't be fooled. They are 'shucking and jiving' in an attempt to capitalize off of our first African American president's popularity among the American electorate. Barack Obama broke new ground because his message of change resonated with Americans from diverse background and ethnicities.
Prior to this, there was a narrow-minded assumption that an African American candidate only appealed to other African Americans and would not have broad based appeal. Obama's popularity upended this notion and has thankfully written a new chapter in American politics but something things never change. Black politicians like Michael Steele and Ken Blackwell will continue to be used as tokens by the Republican party.
Don't be fooled, the Republicans are still the party of Ann Coulter, David Duke and Rush Limbaugh. They are racist, elitist and xenophobic. Their ideology is eternally stuck in the 1960s. While electing Steele is an attempt to attract more blacks and minorities to the party, it will be no more successful than former Republican Presidential candidate John McCain's attempt to attract women by selecting Sarah Palin as his running mate. We all know how successful that was.
As a woman, I was embarrassed for Palin but more embarrassed by the fact that McCain bypassed a bevy of qualified, politically savvy Republican women (Condoleeza Rice, Kay Bailey Hutchinson, Christine Todd Whitman, etc.) in favor of a dimwitted, anti-intellectual beauty queen. The Republican's idea of affirmative action is hiring the least qualified, least threatening minority for job. Think Sarah Palin and Clarence Thomas.
While they mocked Obama and called him a 'magic negro', they are hoping that Steele, their newly elected magic negro will bring them some kind of credibility with the masses. Look, we've got a magic negro too! Like Palin, Steele will just be a token because unless the fundamental ideology of the Republican party changes, it will always be the party of old white men struggling to remain relevant in a world that has passed them by.