America's Forgotten Founding Fathers
But have no fear! There is some good news. More Black men are gaining headway in politics in greater numbers -- and with a real shot to win -- than in any other time in American history. Barack Obama got the ball rolling with his election to the Senate in 2004, and 2006 promises to be another historic year. Harold Ford in Tennessee and Michael Steele in Maryland are both running for the Senate. Cory Booker, in all likelihood, will become the next mayor of my birthplace, Newark, New Jersey next month and Deval Patrick and Ken Blackwell may very well become the first black governors of Massachusetts and Ohio respectively.
The Civil Rights revolution produced a generation of politicians that are now passing the baton (or having it yanked from them) and the 2006 elections will be one of the most important in history for black people of all political stripes.
With that in mind, I want you to keep your eyes open for a documentary by my buddy Adrena Ifill. Adrena, a D.C. native and Howard University MBA, has just completed a documentary, Congressman Robert Smalls: A Patriot's Journey from Slavery to Capitol Hill. It is the first release from her production company, Doubleback Productions. Congressman Smalls was a slave in South Carolina that worked hard, saved his money, and eventually bought his freedom. He then went on to serve five terms in Congress during the Reconstruction era.
I love history, especially black American history, so I am very excited for Adrena and her project. She's been working on it for a long time and now she is submitting it to film festivals around the country, so look out for it!