If you want a prime example of what GOP outreach to the black community should look like, check out activist Scott Presler. The young Trump supporter has organized events across the nation to do exactly what the Republican Party should be doing: engaging black Americans where they live.
Presler has organized hundreds of volunteers in various inner cities to remove trash and debris. But look a little deeper, and you see that what Presler’s crew does goes far beyond picking up garbage.
Trump Activist Leads Cleanup Effort
Shortly after President Trump’s row with recently departed Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD) over the conditions in the lawmaker’s district, Presler witnessed the media reporting on deteriorating Baltimore neighborhoods. Instead of just joining in the chorus of criticism against the city’s leadership, Presler decided to do something about it.
Earlier this year, Presler organized his first cleanup event in Baltimore. Despite some resistance from local media, it was a success. He returned a month later, in September, keeping a promise he made to 81-year-old Louise, a Baltimore resident who told him her grandchildren were unable to attend school because of a malfunctioning HVAC system. He plans to make his visits to Baltimore a monthly occurrence, but, meanwhile, his movement has ballooned.
The activist also has traveled to other cities, such as Los Angeles and Chicago. While the progressive left might discredit him by questioning his motives, a glance at his social media accounts reveals that the residents of the cities he visits are grateful for his work. And none of them seems to have a problem with his support for President Trump.
When Will the GOP Follow Suit?
Many on the right, including Presler himself, have questioned why out-of-town conservatives are willing to organize cleanup efforts in these cities while Democrats are nowhere to be found when hard work needs to be done. This is an excellent point, but perhaps the GOP should be asking itself the same question.
The Democrats do show up to engage with black communities – but to earn votes. But what if the GOP finally began doing the same? What if scores of leaders like Presler, Maj Toure (founder of Black Guns Matter), and Brandon Straka (founder of the WalkAway movement) worked in conjunction with the Republican Party to directly make a difference in the lives of black voters?
Presler’s work serves as a valuable template for the Party of Lincoln. For starters, replicating his efforts will help the GOP gain more influence in the inner cities. Snazzy campaign slogans and handshakes are not enough; heading into the community to provide a valuable service will net the right kind of attention.
Second, it addresses a common concern shared by many conservatives about reaching out to black voters. Some Republicans believe it is self-defeating to engage with black voters because Democrats and their allies in the establishment media would deem that racist. But actions speak louder than words. Black people won’t believe falsehoods when they contradict what they see with their own eyes.
If GOP strategists are wondering how they can widen the base and appeal to minority voters, Presler has charted an effective course. Now it’s time for the GOP to put forth the muscle.