BLOOMBERG GREASES BLACK MINISTERS
Catalyst December Issue 2009
There was an article in the October 29 edition of the New York Times on New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and his relations with African American ministers.
Rev. Calvin O. Butts III has managed to grab “at least $7 million in city contracts” under Bloomberg for his church and non-profits. Rev. Floyd H. Flake is awash in millions of dollars—make that $8 million—in city contracts for city services his church provides. But Rev. A.R. Bernard wins the trophy: the Bloomberg administration decided to sell parts of two streets to his Christian Cultural Center.
According to the article, Bloomberg “has deployed an unusual combination of city money, private philanthropy, political appointments and personal attention, creating a web of ties to black clergy members that is virtually unheard of for a white elected official in New York City.”
In return the mayor has received the endorsements and “the blessings of the city’s most powerful black ministers, who together preach to tens of thousands of congregants each week.”
Where are the church and state watchdogs when it comes to government aid to black churches? If Catholic priests had this kind of “relationship” with Bloomberg, all hell would break loose.
Once again, white liberal racism is at work: black ministers can endorse political candidates with impunity, but woe to a Catholic priest who preaches against abortion. Moreover, Catholics are still waiting for Bloomberg to say it’s okay to put a crèche in the classroom next to the menorah. We aren’t even asking the mayor to buy us a street.