The Black political class, what BAR deems the Black misleadership class, was nurtured in the bowels of white capital to provide an outlet for Black politics after the state-sanctioned destruction of the Black liberation movement in the late 1970s. While Jews and other European American workers have historically leaned on whiteness to relieve economic insecurity in the US, Black Americans have never possessed such an anchor. Class divisions within the Black polity have always been marked by varying levels of poverty, imbuing a state of cognitive dissonance described by E. Franklin Frazier’s study of the Black bourgeoisie. This changed in the 1970s when a select few Black Americans were given access to varying forms of political power, giving more credence to the notion of upward mobility within US capitalist society.
However, the cognitive dissonance within the Black political class only worsened as a result. Increased access to the halls of political power has come at the expense of the Black economic condition. It has required Black people themselves to supervise the affairs of white capital. White capital hoped that Black politicians would become the faces of police repression, war, and barbaric capitalist exploitation. And this is exactly what happened. The ascendancy of Black police commissioners and mayors in majority Black cities like Philadelphia and Detroit has brought with it even more severe enforcement of police brutality and privatization on the Black masses broadly.