- - Monday, June 7, 2021

Isn’t it amazing that the Republican Party and conservatives have been branded with the racist label but in reality, it really is the Democratic Party and radical liberals who are the true racist?

Publicly, liberals constantly profess their “love” and “affection” for the Black community yet have the most racist track record around.

One need look no further than Washington, D.C., known within the Black community as “Chocolate City” because of its former status as a majority Black city; governed by a majority Black city council and having a history of all Black mayors.

White D.C. city council member Mary Cheh is exhibit A of the prototype for what White liberal racism looks like. She checks all the right boxes.  

Ms. Cheh grew up in liberal Elizabeth, New Jersey. She graduated from the liberal all girl’s Douglass College in New Jersey; and went on to receive law degrees from both Rutgers and Harvard schools of law. Both of her daughters were born and raised in D.C. and attended the prestigious Georgetown Day School. It is one of the most liberal K-12 private schools in the country, costing more than $40k per year to attend.  

You would think that a woman with all these radical liberal credentials, would never be accused of sabotaging an iconic Black-owned business. But to the contrary, she seems to be on a one-woman crusade to do just that.

Henry’s Soul Cafe is an iconic Black-owned restaurant started in 1968 in Washington, D.C. by Henry Smith. Henry’s is one of the top soul food restaurants in D.C. and they have been visited by dignitaries from all over the world, including heads of state, musicians, businessmen, philanthropists, etc.

A few years ago, Henry’s son and his business partner began to pursue more catering opportunities for the family-owned organization. They successfully bid for a large D.C. contract to provide food to the homeless.

Their main competition for the contract was DC Central Kitchen (DCCK). They are a nationally recognized community kitchen that recycles food from throughout D.C. and uses it as a means of training the unemployed. They are one of the largest tax-exempt organizations in D.C. operating in this space.

Until two years ago, DCCK had nearly 100% of the contracts to feed the homeless in D.C. So, when the D.C. government reorganized its food program for the homeless, Henry’s won half the contract with the other half remaining with DCCK.

The contract was not just based on lowest cost, but also on “best value” to the government of D.C., the client.

DCCK complained both publicly and privately about losing their monopoly on feeding the homeless.

D.C.’s Department of Human Services (DHS) issued the following public statement in response to DCCK:  “… The process for selecting food vendors is an open competitive process … venders were selected based on knowledge of food safety best practices, demonstrated experience with quality control protocols and meal preparation in large quantities, and other solicitation criteria such as past performance.”

Ms. Cheh is one of DCCK’s biggest patrons on the city council and her default position was that Henry’s must have done something illegal to win the contract because God forbid a Black company can out-compete a White-run organization!

Without any probable cause, Ms. Cheh decides to ask the D.C. attorney general, Karl Racine, to launch an investigation into Henry’s bid. She not only set out to forcibly take back the contract that even D.C.’s own DHS said was competitively bid, but also set out to destroy the reputation of an iconic Black-owned business.

She wrote to Mr. Racine in part: “My concern remains that the District government may have been defrauded, perhaps in multiple respects [by Henry’s].”

Mr. Racine’s investigation concluded that there was no wrongdoing by Henry’s.

As if that wasn’t enough, Ms. Cheh is the lead sponsor of a bill that seems targeted at small and minority businesses, the Nutrition Equity Amendment Act of 2021. The bill creates burdensome oversight regulations that seem to deliberately create unnecessary work and compliance issues for those who don’t have the manpower of a DCCK

As a sitting councilman, Ms. Che could have simply called Henry’s into her office and asked them the questions directly or call the relevant bidders and D.C. government officials in for a council hearing; but she couldn’t fathom the possibility that a Black outfit could compete with a White organization if given a fair chance.

What could be more racist than that?

• Raynard Jackson is a Pulitzer Award-nominated columnist and founder and chairman of Black Americans for a Better Future (BAFBF), a federally registered 527 Super PAC established to get more Blacks involved in the Republican PartyBAFBF focuses on the Black entrepreneur. For more information about BAFBF, visit www.bafbf.org. You can follow Raynard on Twitter @RealRaynardJ.

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