Hot Topics At WAG – Don’t Let The Devil Ride

Hot Topics At WAG – Don’t Let The Devil Ride

Hardy L. Brown. Photo by Benoit Malphettes

There were many “hot topics” discussed at last week’s Westside Action Group (WAG) as attendees went around the room to bring their concerns to the attention of others. I cannot address all of them but I want to highlight some that were of major concerns in my opinion. 

The issue of California State University San Bernardino faculty senate’s vote of no confidence in it’s president Tomas Morales was discussed when one of the attendees wanted to know what the vote means. Even though I seldom speak in public, I explained that it means nothing other than some members of the faculty do not like Dr. Morales and his management style. In my professional opinion and in my experience, most public unions take a “vote of no confidence in elected leaders or chiefs of police when they do not like policies that change the status quo or promote diversity. In San Bernardino the police and fire unions always used that tactic when it came down to money or the city trying to increase the racial diversity in those departments.

In my opinion Dr. Morales is doing a fine job in providing leadership in the community and Inland Region. I can say he is the first president to come to my home and seek my thoughts on how his policies relate to the community and what he hopes to accomplish as president. So he has my support.

Another issued involved attendees feeling as though some people attend WAG meetings not help the African-American community, but come to take away and use what they learn and use it against Blacks. Now while I will not use the specific example that topic brought out, I will just say that some people believe there are one or two snakes and spies who can’t be trusted who like to attend WAG meetings. Their comments brought to mind the gospel song by Neal Roberson, “Don’t Let the Devil Ride.” He sings, “If you let him ride he will want to drive and if you let him drive, he will take you too far…” where you do not want to go, if you know what I mean.

All of that discussion from the attendees prompted the Honorable Former Assembly Member Cheryl Brown to tell the group of her recent experience at the State Democratic Party Convention held in Sacramento. During the African-American Caucus meeting, the head of the organization had various speakers address the caucus. After the state’s Attorney General spoke, Connie Leyva and Eloise Reyes were asked to speak on “unity.” Cheryl said she just couldn’t sit down and silently watch two people who used racially divisive tactics address the very group they attacked. 

Then Cheryl shared what happened to Congresswoman Maxine Waters, whose microphone was cut mid-speech during that same caucus meeting. Tensions were already running high waiting on final election results on who would be named the next Democratic Party chair, Eric Bauman eventually won but Kim Ellis refused to concede. Waters was in mid-sentence telling attendees about President Donald Trump — #45 is how she referred to him — when convention staff alerted organizers that the event ran over the allotted time for the rented sound equipment. A staffer cut the microphone, and the audience moaned and started chanting "keep going, keep going." Waters then hopped down from the podium and said, " Shh Shh. If they cut the microphone off we gonna still talk." 

Who says things are not happening at WAG? The president of the group is releasing a plan of action that will be forthcoming to address the concerns expressed by members and attendees last week.

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