Britons narrowly voted to leave the European Union and since then I’ve heard that racism and xenophobia are to blame. Concerns over the free flow of labor (non-British people) into the UK was certainly a driving force and to ignore the Trump-ish theme of anti-immigration would be irresponsible. But simply labeling the Brits racists–as many liberals in the U.S. have done–lets liberals (I’m one of them) off the hook too easy and thats precisely what they’d like. Whether the topic is Brexit, gay marriage or immigration reform, liberals in the U.S. excel at emphasizing social issues to avoid admitting we lack answers to the economic crises families are facing. Racism very well may have ultimately driven Brexit but it wouldn’t have been possible if not for unaddressed economic strains on families. It’s just easier to point to racism than admit you can’t fix the latter.
George Zimmerman’s gun auction should make clear what value America places on black life. It isn’t just that we don’t value it but that we place monetary value on ending it. This has been true for a long time. It was true in 1955 when Emmitt Till’s killers were paid $4,000 for telling their tale of cold-blooded murder to Look magazine just four months after their acquittal. That acquittal by an all-white jury took only 67 minutes; one juror even said, “If we hadn’t stopped to drink pop, it wouldn’t have taken that long.” George Zimmerman’s trial at least had the appearance of legitimacy but the aftermath is eerily similar and every bit as painful as the Emmitt Till ordeal. Zimmerman is set to make hundreds of thousands from the sell of the gun he used to kill Martin, much like Till’s killers were paid for their story. Different decades, similar results– that should terrify us enough to act.
Paula White is a thin, white, barbie-like preacher who became popular by learning to preach like and appeal to black churchgoers. She’s been married three times (full disclosure: I’m divorced myself). She divorced her first husband soon after becoming a Christian. Along with her second husband, she started what grew to be a megachurch, largely attended by black folks. Paula’s lifestyle grew to include million dollar condos, private jets and so much swag that even Congress felt the need to investigate her. Paula now pastors another majority black megachurch and still makes her living from black dollars. She also became the latest high profile endorser of Donald Trump. So why are those negroes in her church still?
I binge on House of Cards every time Netflix drops a season: don’t judge me, you don’t know my life. Frank Underwood is a shrewd, evil genius that happens to be in politics. Frank rose from Congressman (Majority Whip) all the way to President in about five minutes, employing betrayal, manipulation, deceit and even murder: by any means necessary. Oddly enough, his rise to the presidency was literally prompted by nothing more than a chip on his shoulder, after not receiving a nod for Secretary of State. It was not a grand vision for the country or passion to help the oppressed that motivated Frank, simply the desire to be great and be acknowledged. Men that desire power, void of vision, are dangerous and unprincipled. Frank has proven that and I suspect Trump will also.
There was lead in the water but the government continually denied any health risks to the city’s residents. Only the persistence of a Virginia Tech professor brought the truth to light. I’m not talking about Flint, Michigan, by the way. Rather, I’m referring to our nation’s capital: Washington, DC.
Governor George Wallace of Alabama is most known for his 1963 inaugural speech in which he said, “segregation now, segregation tomorrow and segregation forever!” Wallace was a segregationist and under his administration, several civil rights workers were brutalized and killed as a result of his apathy.