Hip-Hop Artist Sho Baraka Not Voting for Trump or Clinton as an African-American Evangelical Christian

Amisho Baraka (Courtesy of Andrew Tucciarone)
Amisho Baraka (Courtesy of Andrew Tucciarone)

Hip-hop artist Amisho Baraka, who performs as Sho Baraka, is one African-American man who feels left out by both major political parties — and he says this will affect his vote come November.

Baraka, an evangelical Christian, recently wrote a column in Christianity Today entitled “Why I Can’t Vote For Either Trump Or Clinton.” In that article, the son of a former Black Panther says that “as an African-American, I’m marginalized by the lack of compassion on the Right. As a Christian, I’m ostracized by the secularism of the Left.”

Many people are and should be fearful about the next president of the United States, he writes.

NPR’s David Greene spoke with Sho Baraka about the message he’s trying to convey through his music and as an African-American evangelical Christian.

Interview Highlights

On defending the Tea Party as a successful movement and model that he’d love to copy

Well no, I don’t know if I’m gonna defend them as successful but I would they’ve been successful in communicating their desires and their needs, in a sense of creating a platform where people hear their desires and what they stand for. And I don’t know if there’s a unified voice in the urban Christian context where you can say that there’s these groups of peoples who speak for us. And I do feel like the Tea Party has been successful in doing that.

On his ultimate goal

I think baby steps. One, just creating a coalition that is biblically based but also shares the compassion that Jesus displayed in the scriptures — an individual who cares for the poor, who’s concerned for the outcast and marginalized, but at the same time doesn’t compromise his divinity in order to show compassion. I think what we often are asked to do is make those things mutually exclusive.

On if he’s going to vote in November

I am going to vote. I’m especially going to vote in my state and local elections. I will definitely cast a ballot for someone in the presidential election; it will not be Trump or Clinton.

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