Published : Friday, January 18, 2019 | 5:56 AM
Major Williams, the first declared candidate for the 2020 Pasadena mayoral election, will speak at a Jan. 20 rally calling for blacks and Latinos to leave the Democratic Party.
The rally, to be held in downtown Los Angeles, is being convened under the slogan, “We the Free” by proponents of a Blexit, or Black Exit, from American liberal ideology.
“This is about my own sense of self-discovery and what direction I want to go moving forward. It’s about free thinking,” Williams said in a Jan. 17 interview.
“People think that just because you’re black, you’re a Democrat by default,” said Williams. “At the end of the day, on either side, or either party, they need to earn it with specific actions that benefit each person, the city, the state, and the country.”
Blexit was launched in October by conservative activist Candace Owens. The event webpage calls for blacks and Latinos to exit from a polotical perspective “which has poisoned our respective communities.”
Williams is preparing to run for Mayor of Pasadena.
The next mayoral election will be held in March 2020. Williams filed a Form 501, Candidate Intention Statement on Jan. 2. The document is related to campaign finance requirements and is the only action any candidate can officially take at this point in the calendar, according to Pasadena City Clerk Mark Jomsky.
Williams said he hails from Dallas, Texas. He said his higher education spans three different learning institutions: Trinity Valley Community College, where he played basketball, Louisiana Tech University, and Eastfield College in Mesquite, Texas.
The candidate has a philanthropic bent. Upon his arrival in California some five years ago he said he was employed at the Erikson Mental Health Center.
“That got me acclimated to the communities out here, and all over Los Angeles, all the way to the homeless community and to who I still work with today through my nonprofit foundation, Fly Kicks for Kids,” he explained.
The nonprofit recently partnered with City Councilmember Tyron Hampton, providing 100 pairs of shoes for the children at Cleveland Elementary School, upon learning that its doors would be closed.
“Over the last four months, I’ve given away over 400 pairs of shoes, brand new shoes, to students,” Williams explained.
As a prospective mayor, Williams views his role as “an ally more than a city official. I’m not a career politician, so this is not like what I have done every single day of my life for the last eight years. I’ve been pretty successful in entrepreneurship and business.”
As might be expected from someone speaking at a rally encouraging blacks to leave the familiar confines of the Democratic fold, Williams’ political talk leans toward empowerment or self-reliance and away from government assistance.
For example, he takes a dim view of rent control and envisions himself galvanizing an effort to combat it, along with government-sponsored affordable housing efforts.
Williams said he wants to be a “lightning rod” who provides those who are working, but still find it hard to meet the rising costs of housing, “an alternative.”
“So if you’re saying your rent is going up $75,” he explained, “I want to help you make an extra $200 so we can negate that and focus on other issues: building up the city, building up diversity and capitalizing on a lot of potential that we’re not capitalizing on in regards to pooling our resources together to push the city into a new era.”
In addition to housing, his campaign website broaches the issues of education, police and community relations, and homelessness.
The Blexit event is taking place at the Globe Theater in Los Angeles, 740 S. Broadway St., from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m.