lucius_gantt_1.jpgNot too long ago, President Barack Obama was being criticized for not having a very diverse presidential staff. Today, he is being criticized for having too many blacks in important positions. I am not one of those critics.

The way I see it, the president has made a conscious decision to hire more and more people like him. Several of his Ivy League buddies and friends are getting key appointments. Now, if only the president would hire some of the activists in the black community with whom he  worked while community “organizing,” we might be getting somewhere.

Most, not all, blacks who attend Ivy League schools like Harvard, Princeton and Cornell have more in common with their white classmates than they have in common with black people who are exploited, oppressed, suppressed, refused and abused in the ghettos and barrios of America.


The president’s so-called black friends don’t look too black, they don’t “talk” black and they don’t act black. They don’t go out of their way to help black business persons or contract with black government vendors and consultants.

The president’s dark-skinned buddies don’t support Louis Farrakhan or worship with Jeremiah Wright. And, don’t worry about what you read here. The president’s employees, contractors, advisors and appointees would never read an outspoken column like The Gantt Report.

Now, let’s say a word or two about Brown Rice and Cracker Jacks.

United Nations Ambassador Susan Rice has been the target of criticism by rightwing conservatives for comments she made after a U.S. consulate was attacked in Libya that resulted in the deaths of four Americans, including the ambassador.

It has been suggested that after taking hit after hit and after being “jacked” by conservative politicians and Fox News reporters and talk-show hosts, Rice might have a tough time replacing Hillary Clinton as America’s Secretary of State.

False statements

There is no question about Rice’s qualifications for the job but the qualified Rice (Condoleeza, that is) who came before Susan was burnt by what the fresh Rice is accused of: making false statements to the American people about military operations or the lack thereof.

I hate for people to attack black women or any person of color but I don’t care who gets the Secretary of State job because all the new hire will do is rubber-stamp and parrot the positions of Wall Street, the World Bank and the world’s military industrial complexes.

I just find it interesting that everyday black citizens are always ignored until it is time to run and support someone of color who will rarely support African Americans or Africans. It is sort of like how people who never support the SCLC or the NAACP run to those groups for assistance crying crocodile tears the moment they get fired.

We should tell the world how much we love Brown Rice and how much we hate Cracker Jacks.

Rice-and-crabs is a tasty dish but even if a crab rises to the top of the political barrel the crab still would have to thank her lowly brothers and sisters for letting her ascend. I wish Susan Rice well and I think that is more than she wishes for people like me.

Lucius Gantt, a political consultant based in Tallahassee, is author of the book Beast Too: Dead Man Writing. He may be reached at