Rep. Charles Rangel, Dream Deferred

Charles Rangel has served in Congress for nearly thirty years during which time he has been a voice for compassion, for social justice, and the rights of oppressed people. In a sense, he is a product of the Civil Rights movement which demanded equal opportunities in all aspects of society, including government. Rangel emerged from Harlem as among the bright young black men and women who were going to take up the banner of social justice. Ah, the dreams of yesterday all too often encounter the reality of today. It is one thing to be a young black male marching in streets, chanting about the end to corruption by tired old white men, and to be a tired old black man who is part of the Establishment he once denounced. Rangel had every opportunity in November to allow a bright young black man or woman to take his seat in Congress and thus pass on to the next generation unfinished tasks. But, the allure of power was in Rangel’s nostrils and he simply could not let go.

It is time for all old white, black, brown and whatever color to step aside when the time is right to leave the stage of power and empower young people to take a shot at fulfilling the dream. Rangel grew too accustomed to private jets, nice beach houses in resort areas, and being catered to rather than catering to the needs of people he served.