Sunday, August 13, 2017

Racial Tension and Issues Are Not Solely in Charlottesville

Deteriorating Race Relations in the Age of Trump

The horrific news from Charlottesville, the death and injuries that the idea that white supremacists are still active in the nation might lead one to believe that the problem is limited to that college town in Virginia.  It is not.

First of all though what in the world were the police doing in Cville to allow the protests and counter protests to become uncontrollable.  The clashes were predictable and expected.  If Charlottesville law enforcement were unable, unwilling or too weak to handle the job they should have called for help.  What is wrong with them?  As for Trumpie, well he blamed everyone with nary a single word condemning white racists.  But then he wouldn't want to attack his most loyal supporters, would he?

And the NYT has stories of other racial issues tearing at the fabric of society.  New York Democrats are becoming divided, in part over charter schools and the racial prejudices that infect education policy in New York state.  The latest outrage came from Jeffrey Loeb, a wealthy hedge fund manager (does that profession just create assholes as a side effect?) and charter school advocate.  Mr. Loeb decided it was good strategy to invoke the KKK with respect to an African American politician.

Mr. Loeb wrote this week that “hypocrites who pay fealty to powerful union thugs and bosses do more damage to people of color than anyone who has ever donned a hood,” singling out the minority leader of the State Senate, who is African-American. Mr. Loeb, a hedge fund giant and political megadonor, quickly deleted and disavowed the incendiary comment after it became public, but the damage was done.

Good grief!  And aspiring Democratic presidential candidate Gov. Andrew Cuomo is right in the middle, and rapidly losing his opportunity to be considered a serious contender for the nomination.  His handling of this issue along with neglect of the city’s transportation system should doom his presidential decisions.

Going south the Times is reporting on how Ole Miss is dealing with racial issues and it virulent racial past.  For example there is good old Lucius Lamar.

A professor at Ole Miss before and after the Civil War, he served in both chambers of Congress and as a Supreme Court justice.
Oxford’s main thoroughfare, lined with stately homes and towering oaks, is named Lamar Avenue. His home, restored as a museum, is on the National Register of Historic Places. In 1977, Ole Miss dedicated a major building as Lamar Hall.
That building will soon get a plaque more fully describing Lamar’s legacy.
Lamar drafted the state’s orders of secession, funded his own Confederate regiment and held 31 slaves. After the war, he remained a divisive figure, delivering speeches that riled up whites in a violent 1875 election that he said “involved the supremacy of the unconquered and unconquerable Saxon race,” according to one newspaper account of the day.
Somehow the concept that this racist should not be honored is alien to the good mothers and fathers in Mississippi.  How much thought does it take to condemn such a man?  Apparently more than the powers that be in Mississippi have.

At a meeting black journalists an African American Trump White House staffer got out of control.

Ms. Manigault-Newman is the director of communications for the White House Office of Public Liaison. She also noted that in her role, she is often the “only African-American representative” in the White House and frequently tries to be an advocate on behalf of black people.
But the discussion quickly worsened from there. It became a 25-minute argument during which Ms. Manigault-Newman called Mr. Gordon “aggressive,” with Mr. Gordon pointedly asking what effect Ms. Manigault-Newman had made on the president.
In one heated exchange, Mr. Gordon recounted Mr. Trump’s comments last month on Long Island that suggested police officers should rough up suspects while taking them into custody. Ms. Manigault-Newman interjected, “Are you suggesting that I just walk away?”
Gosh, the sole African American in the White House.  And how did she get the job, how is it that Trump even knew and African American woman?

Heading into the forum, many of the conference attendees said they were steeling themselves for the appearance of Ms. Manigault-Newman, who became famous on “The Apprentice” and has had several fiery exchanges with journalists.

Oh right. 

And of course they must have been some killing of unarmed African American by policy recently.  But that is now too common to be considered news.

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