It’s like the wolf cautioning prey of the fox
“Watch out for those Republicans! Trump is refusing to condemn the KKK,” the Democrats (in Minnesota they are DFL) are screaming to Black folks. The congressional Black caucus’ reason for Blacks rushing to vote Democrat is because the Republicans were being mean to the poor Black man in charge, President Obama. The logic is, since the Republicans blocked the Black president from appointing the next Supreme Court Justice, they are racist and so Blacks should retaliate by voting for the Democrats again.
Yes, it’s that time again. Democrats have dusted off their scary movies filled with Republican bad guys as Black people are encouraged — yet again — not to vote for what they want, but against evil, which is really the lesser of two evils.
It’s just like some well-off Black folks who want us to believe that “Oscars so White” is a new thing that should get us to boycott the Oscars, which most folks do anyway. The Democrats want us to get all excited about something that is common place in U.S. society — racism, which they have done little to eradicate.
So with all the problems Black folks are facing, the only thing that should motivate them is the fear that things could get worse. Really? But that’s not what they taught in civics class. They taught that voting is about representation, about getting what you want, about pushing forward your agenda.
Ah, but there is the rub. Black folks don’t have an agenda. We wait for the Democrats to give us one. Fortunately, because of the movement in the street protesting police violence, the Democratic candidates have been forced to talk about real issues that Black people face. The Democrats should stop trying to win votes by fear mongering, because if we are honest, they are a bit scary too, especially if you are a working-class or poor American.
Black folks haven’t fared that well under Democratic administrations either, with this one that promised hope and change delivering nothing of the sort. Under the present Democratic administration Black folks lost more wealth than ever before, primarily because of the shady dealings of Wall Street’s financial partners, the big banks that encouraged selling unsuspecting Black folks sub-prime mortgages and adjustable rate mortgages, even when they qualified for prime-rate mortgages.
Speaking of scary, the Corleone’s — I mean Clinton’s — have done some frightening things to poor folks. Clinton eliminated poor folk’s welfare as we know it. He increased rich folk’s welfare, placing term limits on the government handout, as well as requiring people to work for the measly stipend.
In the late 1980s, the ghettos all over the U.S. were overrun with cocaine and crack addiction. With a little help from the CIA (look it up), Don Corleone (Bill Clinton), while playing the saxophone, eating collard greens and singing the Negro National Anthem with gusto, decided the answer was just to lock everybody up — young, old, pushers and users — for as long as possible. It was called mandatory minimums, which terrorized Black, Brown and poor communities.
The Democrats have been just as busy as the Republicans in maintaining the privileges of the one percent. They too have bombed and invaded other countries who have not attacked or even threatened the U.S. It was the Obama Administration that bombed Libya and overthrew Mohamar Ghaddafi, who actually had been a friend to Black Africa and Black Americans.
This administration didn’t close Guantanamo Bay. And even though he visited mosques, this president has killed more Muslims by drone warfare than any other. The Democrats in this administration, while talking about its love for immigrants, has been constantly deporting them, separating parents from children. And the most pressing issues for Black Americans — police violence, mass incarceration and unemployment — have hardly been addressed by our friendly Democrats.
One of the scariest things undermining the well-being and psyche of Black folks is the constant threat that at any moment law enforcement can either take one’s life or change it for the worse. Yet the Democrats have not lifted a finger to stop this plague on Black society.
Trump, as Guardian commentator Gary Younge astutely points out, is just another xenophobe who is taking advantage of “nationalist nostalgia, patriotic myth, class grievance and economic insecurity.” Trump did not come out of the blue sky, he is a product of this system U.S. imperialism, which the Democrats are just as much a part of, even if not as scary as the Republicans. But they are scary enough.
Trump is not proposing anything that any other capitalist party hasn’t proposed. He is just more serious about carrying it out. Hopefully one of these days people will see through this fear mongering and instead of opting for the “lesser evil” will actually stand up for themselves, create their own platforms, and build their Own Damn Party (ODP) to carry it out.
Mel Reeves welcomes reader response to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mel Reeves was the community editor at the Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder until he passed away on January 6, 2022. He had a long and storied history working at the MSR.
Find more about Reeve’s life and legacy here: spokesman-recorder.com/category/remembering-mel-reeves.