Blinded by white? | Tom Camfield

Tom Camfield
Posted 1/13/21

YES, THANK GOODNESS! I wonder how things would have turned out if the Georgia vote had gone Republican Jan. 5 and we still had Mitch McConnell strutting around the halls of the U.S. Senate the …

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Blinded by white? | Tom Camfield


YES, THANK GOODNESS! I wonder how things would have turned out if the Georgia vote had gone Republican Jan. 5 and we still had Mitch McConnell strutting around the halls of the U.S. Senate the afternoon of Jan. 21, deciding what should or shouldn’t be voted upon.

The election of two Democrats Jan. 5 was the final piece of reality that a mindless, murderous mob just could not handle in an orderly manner as it drove one large step too far in its attempted change to the very nature of our democracy. And in promoting deep into criminality the ugly self-image of one individual’s deranged, declining years, it earned the description of “domestic terrorism.”

We have Blacks to thank in large part for the resurgence of our Democracy — but also still illustrated as victims. They utilized the power of the vote not only to throw out Donald Trump Nov. 3 but also in a significant instance then defeated two of his well-to-do white supremacist followers in special Georgia runoff elections. Last Wednesday, Associated Press reported that AP VoteCast, a survey of more than 3,700 voters in Jan 5’s runoff contests, found that Black voters made up roughly 30% of the electorate — and almost all of them— 94 percent — backed Jon Ossoff (a 33-year-old Jew) and the Rev. Raphael Warnock (51-year-old Black Baptist minister). Democrats thus won control of the U.S. Senate by the slimmest of margins.

Senator Warnock noted: “The other day, because this is America, the 82-year-old hands that used to pick somebody else’s cotton picked her youngest son to be a United States senator . . . Tonight we proved with hope, hard work and the people by our side, anything is possible.”

Then it occurred to me as I turned to read the 14th amendment (see following), things had gone pretty quietly on the law-enforcement side for the right-wing forces of Donald Trump. The armed white insurgents rampaged at will through the halls of Congress in session and the adjoining buildings, such as the guy from Arkansas who sat with his feet on the desk of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

Most everyone seems to have been White. It was nothing like a “Black Lives Matter” demonstration. There were no Black guy sreadily at hand to throw down, bludgeon and handcuff — or to kneel forcibly upon the necks of.

But someone took this white guy’s picture.

Late last week, Washington Post columnist Petula Dvorak noted, “They planned the riots openly on social media for weeks, bragging about how many guns they’re going to bring and the mayhem they’d set off. They came by the thousands, and outside the White House Trump rallied them to march on the Capitol on Wednesday, reassuring them that ‘after this we’re going to walk down there and I’ll be there with you.’ (which he wasn’t.) . . .

“And still, even though we all saw it coming, the headquarters of our government was literally invaded by loud, vaping fools in flannel surplus-store body armor, animal pelts and face paint. Police seemed powerless to stop it . . .”

I read with relief in the Washington Post: “House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) told colleagues in a letter Friday that she has spoken to the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Mark A. Milley, about keeping an ‘unstable president’ from accessing the nuclear codes.” That takes care of my primary concern. I really don’t care what they do with Donald now.

So I’ll close here for the moment with a salute to our emergent coalition of Black, Asian, Hispanic, Islamic, Jewish, Native American, LGBTQ and miscellaneous whites — represented by the 14th amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Ratified in 1868, it granted equal citizenship to everyone born or naturalized in the United States — including former slaves — and guaranteed all citizens “equal protection of the laws.” To wit: “All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside. No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”

Dvorak also noted: “The mob that stormed and desecrated the Capitol Wednesday could not have existed in a country that hadn’t been radicalized by the likes of Sean Hannity, Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingram” of Fox News.