While his words were poignant and necessary, they will ring hollow if he does little else going forward to give voice to the millions of Americans of all colors who want to change our culture for the better.
I happily voted for Senator Barack Obama in the 2008 presidential election. However, I am also among those who believe that he has been timid on racial issues and can do more than he has on issues that are of unique importance to African Americans.
The majority of election cycles between 1964 and 2010 resulted in House incumbent reelection rates of at least 90 percent. Those are Kim Jung Il and Robert Mugabe numbers that legitimately call into question the fundamental tenet of American democracy.
For too long, conservatives have blamed Black leaders for Republican failures with Black voters. Herman Cain's view suggests that looking inward is something the Republicans are unable, or unwilling, to do.
Who can reasonably argue against greater governmental action on poverty or leveling the economic playing field for all Americans? Who really believes it is a bad idea to call attention to the millions of people now living near or below the poverty line?
The president could lose his reelection bid if enough Black voters stay home because they either do not believe the Republican nominee can win or they just do not feel the same urgency to show up on election day.
Congressional Republicans who think the outcome of this election is a mandate for their view of governance are overstating the case and run the risk of the kind of overreach some say the hurt the Democrats.
It's perfectly acceptable for groups of Americans to push the government to deal with their causes, so black leaders who want to go easy on this president because he is black are failing their constituents.