Friday, October 22, 2010

Al Reynolds IL Senate Dist. 52 Candidate

Al Reynolds the IL Senate Dist. 52 Candidate made comments at a Candidate Forum on Wednesday night 10-20-2010, that do not reflect the opinion of the East Central IL TEA Party.

For the record, I do not believe Al Reynolds is a racist. I think his choice of words were poor. His point was relevant if fully understood, which is impossible in a one minute answer to a question that really requires 20 minutes of discussion to fully understand.

The following is his initial Response from Wednesday's nights comments. It's my understanding that he will be releasing an additional statement soon.

“Racial remarks stunned the audience”
This headline described my comments at the recent League of Women Voters and NAACP forum. I would like to apologize if my statements offended anyone in the audience and in my community.
I realize that my words generalized a small segment of my neighbors and I regret the inferences that it created. That was certainly not my intent.
My comments were intended to initiate a conversation which could lead to solutions for not only African-American youth anticipating college, but youth in general. As an elected official it is my intent to build real educational opportunities, for everyone of all races and gender, not just applicants for admission to the University of Illinois.

I have a strong background of involvement in minority communities, and know first hand the challenges many minority youth face. While I was training for the ministry, I served in the trenches working with two low income churches in Los Angeles. I saw first hand the impact that street crime, gangs, and restricted job opportunities had on minority youth.

I have plans to change this, to bring solutions, and I am outraged that I am being labeled a racist. Nothing could be further from the truth. I have dedicated my life to building bridges for all people and to improve the quality of life for all mankind.

I was speaking from my heart, and although in hindsight I would have worded my statement differently, I am, and have always been strongly committed to the American dream for everyone, including African American youth. I remain committed to solutions and will continue working on behalf of all citizens of our district.

As a Navy Corpsman for 20 years, I put my life on the line in service for my country, for everyone in my country, red, yellow, black, or white.
I am in this race to create real solutions for Danville, the 52nd District and Illinois and not to shy away or gloss over difficult issues and discussions as we've seen too often from professional politicians. Again I regret if my comments were offensive to anyone as that was not my intent.

Al Reynolds, Republican Candidate for the 52nd Senate seat.

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  1. I agree completely. The question asked him was extremely leading and loaded. I also wish he would have answered differently but I do not believe that he's racist, nor do I believe that his comment was racist. Let's face it: If Al wasn't white we wouldn't even be having this conversation right now. Bill Cosby has made countless comments similar to Al's and no one thinks that Bill is racist do they?

    I am disappointed and disgusted in the Republican Candidates and other Tea Party members who were so quick to throw Al under the bus to cover their own butts.

    Al brought up some very good points but now since everyone is calling "racism" those points are lost. Al said some things that people don't want to hear. People don't want to hear that choosing drugs over school is easier. They don't want to hear that for some people (black and white and brown) one of the better chances they have of going to school is through sports.

    Accusing Al of being a racist is covering up the real issues and leaves NO ONE, including those black young men that the question was centered around, better off. All of you who threw Al under the bus should be ashamed for perpetuating the smoke screen that has settled over political debate for ages. The topic of how to encourage more minorities to attend college is a difficult topic to discuss. But if we continue to cry racism when someone like Al dares to attack this issue head on then we will never solve this, or any other, issue.

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