Blacks not welcome as equals


AMERICAN politicians pretend to be disgusted by President Donald Trump’s overt support for white nationalists and yet they are just as culpable as he is when it comes to worsening race relations in the US.
Washington turns a blind eye to systematic racism in the US and when pressed to deal with the serious problem, politicians blame the victims.
Phrases such as ‘I see no colour’ or ‘Many of my friends are black’ have become statements used by many Congressmen and women in attempts to stave off pointed questions as to how legislators are going to deal with the growing discrimination and racism in the US.
The most glaring illustration of racism and discrimination in the US is within law enforcement agencies.
Police brutality is not a new phenomenon within the black community.
What has become ‘new’ is that the system now openly shows that it will not lift a finger against perpetrators of these crimes.
The conduct of law enforcement agents since the civil rights movement has not shifted for the better when dealing with the African-American community.
Beatings, assassinations, use of excessive force and arbitrary arrests, among other vices, continue unabated.
One could say nothing has really changed that much since the days of Martin Luther King Jr.
In fact, now they shoot black people sitting on their porches, in their yards and at their dinner tables.
They do not wait for them to be on the streets before they kill them.
On March 3 1991, Rodney Glen King, an African-American taxi driver, was the victim of Los Angeles Police Department brutality after several police officers beat him up during his arrest.
George Holliday filmed the incident from his nearby balcony and sent the footage to local news station KTLA.
The footage clearly showed King being beaten repeatedly and the incident was covered by news media around the world.
Four officers were tried on charges of use of excessive force; three were totally acquitted and the jury failed to reach a verdict on one charge for the fourth.
Within hours of the acquittals, the 1992 Los Angeles riots began, lasting for six days.
African-Americans were outraged by the verdicts and began rioting in the streets along with the Latino communities.
By the time law enforcement — the California Army National Guard, the US Army and the US Marine Corps — restored order, the riots had resulted in
63 deaths, 2 383 injuries, more than
7 000 fires, damage to 3 100 businesses and nearly US$1 billion in financial loss.
Smaller riots occurred in other US cities such as San Francisco, Las Vegas, in neighbouring Nevada, Seattle in Washington State and as far east as Atlanta in Georgia and New York City.
Over the years, police have blatantly shot and killed black men and women on America’s streets.
The Black Lives Movement has become a way for the black community to show its concern and demonstrate for the change of policing culture in the US.
But guess what!
Instead of accepting that there is institutionalised racism in the US, those responsible have not only blamed the black victims, but also openly supported counter movements, especially those by police officers who refuse to accept that they use excessive force when dealing with people of colour.
It is not just the law enforcement officers; even the judicial system has a tier system when it comes to meting out justice. You have heard of ‘driving while black’.
There is also the offence of ‘going to court while black’.
Statistics show that a black offender is likely to get jail time for an offence for which a white offender will go for community service or counselling.
If both offences carry a mandatory jail sentence, the black offender will get the longest jail time, while the white offender is likely to get the minimum amount of jail time. Even in terms of representation, a white offender is likely to receive better legal representation, while a black offender is usually informed that pleading guilty is the only viable option for the courts to show leniency.
A few days ago, President Trump called a former African-American White House staffer, ‘a crazed, crying lowlife…dog’.
Omarosa Manigualt-Newman once served as President Trump highest profile black staffer.
She served as the director of communications in the White House’s Office of Public Liaison and was fired in December last year.
She is releasing a new book, Unhinged, An Insider’s Account of the Trump White House.
Omarosa has released some details of what is contained in the book including allegations that President Trump uses the ‘n’ word to refer to black folk and she has proof.
This is what has gotten ‘the leader of the free world’ unhinged again.
President Trump is a glorified bigot who refers to people of colour as animals.
He called Mexicans ‘immigrants, rapists and criminals’; refers to predominantly black countries as ‘s***tholes’; and women as ‘pigs’.
His attacks on black women frame our sisters as dishonest, unintelligent and mentally unhinged.
Ironically, Omarosa finds herself bearing the brunt of President Trump’s attacks after having repeatedly argued he was not racist during her time at the White House.
One would think the fact that she has recordings of President Trump doing what he does best – degrading non-whites — shows that she has all along known the real Trump, but chose to ignore that truth.
However, my final point is, various women of colour in positions of power or authority who have stood up to President Trump have been attacked by not only his supporters but also his staff.
President Trump is more savage and aggressive in his response to any criticism by women of colour and his followers will not be far behind — making death threats to such women.
Women such as former Attorney-General Loretta Lynch, political analyst Donna Brazile, former Obama staffer Susan Rice, journalist Jemele Hill, Representative Maxine Waters and reporter April Ryan, among many others, have all been at the receiving end of President Trump, his staff and his supporters bigotry.
Any woman of colour who speaks up is punished and delegitimised.
One is forced to conclude that the opinions and statements of women of colour are not welcome in the US as long as they are criticising President Trump.
One wonders whether those people of colour who serve under President Trump are ever comfortable enough to air any views that are different from his, as the threat of public humiliation is always hanging over their heads.


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