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African-Americans at the RNC: scarce

Dr. Michael Eric Dyson speaking in Denver last week.

Last night, during CNN's coverage of the Republican National Convention in Minneapolis-St. Paul, commentator Jeffrey Toobin noted that the three main speakers of the evening -- former Senator Fred Thompson, President George W. Bush and Senator Joe Lieberman -- were all "old white men" whose homogenity contrasted sharply with the diversity on display at the Democratic National Convention in Denver. The numbers bear out this claim: The Louisville Courier-Journal reports that only 36 of the 2,380 Republican delegates this year are African-American -- a 78 percent decline from 2004 and the lowest number in forty years. The total makes a sign put up in Minnesota by the recent Denver visitors from The Daily Show -- "Welcome rich white oligarchs" -- seem more like dispassionate description rather than comedy.

Given the small number of African-Americans on hand, I'm guessing there are few events taking place in and around the RNC like the one viewable below -- an address by Dr. Michael Eric Dyson, sponsored by the College Democrats of America, who argues that Democratic nominee Barack Obama uses hip-hop generation methodology to present his message of change. But I could be wrong -- so if there's a "John McCain is dope" seminar getting underway this week, please let me know.

Click "More" to check out Dyson's theory. -- Michael Roberts

Here's part one:

And here's part two:

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