Why so few minority candidates?

Why so few minority candidates? America’s political system favors the majority. Politics begin at the community level at the bottom of the political ladder. Those who want to run for office must compete against the establishment. Those in political power usually choose candidates who look like them. Those who fund political candidates usually choose to fund candidates who look like them. Minority candidates––blacks, Latinos, even women don’t want to fight the system and therefore, less often choose to run for these local positions. Even when minorities do challenge the establishment, they lack the network and financial backing necessary to be chosen. Furthermore, a minority candidate who starts at the bottom of the political ladder knows he or she will always have to fight the system in order to get elected. Without a political base, community record, and plenty of money, minority candidates find it difficult to run for higher office. While there are many blacks, Latinos and Women who can vote they don’t always make the effort in terms necessary to elect minority candidates. Strength in numbers does not always translate into political power. In general, voters usually vote for candidates who look like them, but if the existing power structure only presents candidates who look like the establishment, voters have little choice in choosing minorities. Change happens, slowly. There are many more minority candidates today than ever before. Minorities turn into majorities and then impose the same restrictions on those still climbing the political ladder. Once in a while a minority slips into high office. Witness the abuse and scorn heaped upon an outsider by the current white majority. Richard Dorsey, Hacienda Heights, CA.

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