Wilmington African American leaders back Hillary Clinton
The “Mothers of the Movement” – mothers of African Americans lost to gun violence and police action – spoke at the DNC this week.
But they also spoke with Wilmington African American leaders in April, and helped convince them to support Hillary Clinton.
Sandra Bland was one of many mothers speaking out at the DNC to help prevent the loss of young African American lives to gun violence and police brutality.
She also met with leaders in Wilmington like Pastor Donald Morton in April, and Morton says their message about Hillary Clinton made a lasting impact.
“She said, ‘we’re not playing with Hillary.’ Because in that room, many of us were still cautious about a Hillary Clinton presidency and it was that meeting that helped us to embrace Hillary," Morton said.
Morton says he didn’t want to hear from anyone who wasn’t serious about helping the community.
He added that not only did he and others ask the mothers hard questions about Clinton’s policies but the mothers fired tough questions right back at them.
“One of them said, don’t just ask us if we’re for real: are you for real? What are you doing in your community? You’re pastors, clergy, elected officials…what are you doing in your own community?”
Morton says that the African American community is largely backing Hillary Clinton, after what he says has been a “love-hate relationship” with the Clintons.
Morton says the 1994 Crime Bill caused problems in the African American community, and it took some convincing on the part of the “Mothers of the Movement” to get them on board with Hillary.
"It was not a Kumbaya moment," Morton said. "It was: 'we trust you even though we don’t trust her, so if you tell us she can be trusted – because we trust you and we know what’s on the line, this your child’s body, their legacy on the line- and if you tell us we can trust her, then we’ll open up our arms and hearts to her.' And they did.”
Morton adds that African Americans can’t blame Hillary for a policy that was implemented by her husband.
Morton called for individuals in the African American community to do their research and think seriously about what at Trump administration would look like.
Chuck Singleton is a leader of the Delaware Coalition to Dismantle the New Jim Crow, and was in the same meeting with Morton and the Mothers of the Movement.
"I was very moved as anyone else should be. The pain that they felt they conveyed, they communicated to those in the room," Singleton said. "It really just continues to beg the question that there really has to be change."