Thursday, May 31, 2018

Trump makes racism respectable again in America

One hundred years after Woodrow Wilson, a racist who restored segregation to the federal civil service, won re-election in the 1916 US presidential election, Donald Trump, another racist who in the 1970s with his father had been charged with housing discrimination against blacks by the Department of Justice, was elected president. In recent decades while overt racism had become a social taboo, Trump won many fans by propagating the lie that Barack Obama, the first black president, had been born in Africa not the United States – suggesting Obama was an illegitimate president.

This week Roseanne Barr, an actress and Trumpian, wrote in a tweet that Obama administration aide Valerie Jarrett was the baby of the “Muslim brotherhood & planet of the apes.” The odious cretin also tweeted that 87-year-old Hungarian-born Jewish billionaire George Soros, had collaborated with the Nazis to send fellow Jews to the gas chambers and steal their wealth – he was a child/teen during the Second World War.

Trump’s son Donald Trump Jr retweeted Barr’s attack on Soros – Trump Jr may well not have a clue about the Holocaust and when it took place.

Jason Sattler, Opinion columnist at USATODAY wrote:

"Trump wouldn’t say a black woman looked like 'Muslim brotherhood & planet of the apes had a baby.' He’d just continually imply Barack Obama is a Muslim and demand his birth certificate or college transcripts."

This sort of dog-whistling thrills Trump’s fans, because it allows them to toy with the liberals whom they believe see racism and sexism in everything. Trump doesn't kowtow to what they see as political correctness. Instead, he allows them to enact their own form of PC that enables them to punish NFL players who don’t protest correctly or people who refuse to say "Merry Christmas." Trump gives his fans a revenge fantasy they get to live out on a daily basis. But Roseanne learned the hard way that no one gets to be Donald, not even her…However, what Barr and Trump have been selling with so much success is a fantasy that’s dying. It’s a fantasy of an America where families that look like Roseanne’s family on TV buy into a guy like Trump because he’s going to protect them from the Muslims, the immigrants, the Obama elite.

It only makes sense if you think Trump cares about anything other than himself and his kids. And that’s the greatest fantasy of all."

News stories emerge almost daily in the US about police being called over black Americans doing nothing more than being black. Writer Barrett Holmes Pitner explains why he thinks American racism is unique.

The Washington Post reports that nearly 80% of Republicans claim that Trump isn’t biased against black people. (More than 80% of Democrats and 52% of all Americans say he is.)

Fifty years later…

This year is the 50th anniversary of the assassination of Martin Luther King and it is also the golden jubilee of the publication of the report of the National Advisory Commission on Civil Disorders, known as the Kerner Commission, after its chair, Otto Kerner. The group was convened by President Lyndon Johnson in the wake of the 1967 race riots. The commission concluded:

"Our nation is moving toward two societies, one black, one white — separate and unequal…. What white Americans have never fully understood — but what the Negro can never forget – is that white society is deeply implicated in the ghetto. White institutions created it, white institutions maintain it, and white society condones it."

Last year The New York Times reported: “In 2015 — the most recent year for which data are available — black households at the 20th and 40th percentiles of household income earned an average of 55% as much as white households at those same percentiles. This is exactly the same figure as in 1967.”

Starbucks stores across the United States closed on Tuesday afternoon for racial bias training after two black men were recently arrested at one of its Philadelphia locations for the crime of simply being there.

Viewpoint: Why racism in US is worse than in Europe

Trump's rallies evoke spectacle of public lynchings in America

Trump’s America: A banana republic with nukes

An Alarming Tip About a Neo-Nazi Marine, Then an Uncertain Response

White America’s racial resentment is the real impetus for welfare cuts, study says

‘You know why the lady called the police’: Black people face 911 calls for innocuous acts

Struggle for black and Latino mortgage applicants suggests modern-day redlining

Don Lemon of CNN on being called by Trump “the dumbest man on television"