What We Know:
- The reference to the Black National Anthem Lift Every Voice, prioritizes the prosecution of hate crimes, creates a $900 million fund to fight gun violence, and provides better access to federal funding for African Americans who are struggling due to the coronavirus pandemic.
- The plan vows to advance the economic mobility of African Americans and close the racial wealth and income gaps, expand access to high-quality education and tackle racial inequity in our education system, make far reaching investments in ending health disparities by race, strengthen America’s commitment to justice, make the right to vote and the right to equal protection real for African Americans and address environmental justice.
“African Americans can never have a fair shot at the “American Dream” so long as entrenched disparities are still allowed to chip away at opportunity. You don’t have an equal chance when your schools are substandard, when your home is undervalued, when your car insurance costs more for no good reason, or when the poverty rate for African Americans is more than twice what it is for Whites.” – Joe Biden
- The former senator and vice president went on to criticize President Donald Trump’s response to the coronavirus, particularly as it pertains to the African American community, which has been hit disproportionately hard by the pandemic.
- Funding for African Americans is a central part of the plan which includes more opportunities for Black owned businesses to have access to federal contracts. The plan also looks to support Black churches, and expand African American homeownership and access to affordable, safe housing.
- Just last week, Hip-Hop star, Sean “Diddy” Combs vowed to “hold the vote hostage if I have to,” in an interview with Naomi Campbell on her No Filter with Naomi YouTube show. He said, “It’s whoever is going to take care of our community, whoever wants to make a deal, it’s business at this point.”
- Given that Biden routinely points to his experience with Barack Obama, it follows that the former vice president might name his new plan for the same song that the 44th president once famously sang with Smokey Robinson more than a decade ago. Lift Every Voice and Sing also has other significant presidential ties. The poem was originally performed in honor of Abraham Lincoln’s birthday on Feb. 12, 1900, and was later set to music in 1905 by Johnson’s brother John Rosamond.
Today, the song is an integral piece of Black patriotism.