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Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Trump Dares to Use the "W" word

Donald Trump became the first US President in more than 32 years to use his Inaugural Address to divide Americans along color lines, and to speak about "white" people when he said:
It is time to remember that old wisdom our soldiers will never forget: that whether we are black or brown or white, we all bleed the same red blood of patriots, we all enjoy the same glorious freedoms, and we all salute the same great American Flag.
America's most famous Klansman caught the significance of that and tweeted out:
Fox News picked up on it too:
As I explained in The problem with white people, the very concept of "white people" was invented in the 13 colonies only 300 years ago to justify the enslavement of Africans, and is an intrinsically racist term in that it awards a symbolic title of "the enlightened ones" [lightened ones] based on a light beige skin color that chromatically is very far from white.

The President's speech may have 'used the "W" word' but it was anything but enlightened. Many thought it very dark and angry, but David Duke found it right up his alley:
Trump gave an Alt-Right Speech right down the line, We couldn’t have asked for more! Donald Trump inspired us in his first speech as OUR President.
David Duke leaves no doubt about what he means by OUR President:
The KKK leader was keen to hear all the coded messages in Trump's speech, as when he quotes Adoph Hitler supporter Charles Lindbergh:
Duke called "America First" "the historic slogan of the original Alt-Right," bragging "Trump evoked my campaign slogan" because the Klan leader has used it in his past campaigns for elected office.
In fact, you could say it was so full of dog whistles that it might give a whole new meaning to the term "whistleblower."


What David Duke calls the "W" word is a rare one in US presidential inaugural addresses. Surprisingly, "white" has been used in reference to race in such speeches only five times before Trump, even if you count John Quincy Adams' very dubious brag that "our commerce has whitened every ocean" in 1825 while there was still a robust illegal slave trade going on from US ports.

Race would not come up again in an inaugural address for 52 years, until 1877 when, in the wake of the Civil War and Reconstruction, Rutherford B. Hayes felt the need to address the race question directly:
Let me assure my countrymen of the Southern States that it is my earnest desire to regard and promote their truest interest--the interests of the white and of the colored people both and equally--and to put forth my best efforts in behalf of a civil policy which will forever wipe out in our political affairs the color line and the distinction between North and South, to the end that we may have not merely a united North or a united South, but a united country.
Like Trump, Hayes lost the popular vote, and although he professed racial equality, he secured the 20 electoral votes he needed to win through the notorious Compromise of 1877, in which he agreed to the removal of federal troops from the South. This allowed the first generation of klansmen to overthrow many of the gains of the black reconstruction period and re-impose white terror on the former slaves.

Twelve years later, in 1889, Benjamin Harrison echoed a similar theme of racial reconciliation, although he did it without awarding some people the attributes of "white." Instead, he spoke to "those men in the South" and argued that if they:
would courageously avow and defend their real convictions they would not find it difficult, by friendly instruction and cooperation, to make the black man their efficient and safe ally, not only in establishing correct principles in our national administration, but in preserving for their local communities the benefits of social order and economical and honest government.
William Howard Taft began his 1909 Inaugural Address with words of wisdom for Donald Trump:
Anyone who has taken the oath I have just taken must feel a heavy weight of responsibility. If not, he has no conception of the powers and duties of the office upon which he is about to enter, or he is lacking in a proper sense of the obligation which the oath imposes.
Then he followed that by explaining how he saw the inaugural address:
The office of an inaugural address is to give a summary outline of the main policies of the new administration, so far as they can be anticipated.
Accordingly, he went into some detail and produced one of the longest inaugural addresses of any president. What he said on race relations alone was already two-thirds the length of Trump's entire address. In spite of this, I will quote him fully because in his inaugural address he vowed to make "the fight for 15" one of the centerpieces of his administration. What I mean by that is that he promised a vigorous enforcement of that mother of all voting rights acts, the Fifteenth Amendment to the US Constitution. He was still fighting for reconciliation almost fifty years after the Civil War [because of the length , I have made bold key passages]:
I look forward with hope to increasing the already good feeling between the South and the other sections of the country. My chief purpose is not to effect a change in the electoral vote of the Southern States. That is a secondary consideration. What I look forward to is an increase in the tolerance of political views of all kinds and their advocacy throughout the South, and the existence of a respectable political opposition in every State; even more than this, to an increased feeling on the part of all the people in the South that this Government is their Government, and that its officers in their states are their officers.

The consideration of this question can not, however, be complete and full without reference to the negro race, its progress and its present condition. The thirteenth amendment secured them freedom; the fourteenth amendment due process of law, protection of property, and the pursuit of happiness; and the fifteenth amendment attempted to secure the negro against any deprivation of the privilege to vote because he was a negro. The thirteenth and fourteenth amendments have been generally enforced and have secured the objects for which they are intended. While the fifteenth amendment has not been generally observed in the past, it ought to be observed, and the tendency of Southern legislation today is toward the enactment of electoral qualifications which shall square with that amendment. Of course, the mere adoption of a constitutional law is only one step in the right direction. It must be fairly and justly enforced as well. In time both will come. Hence it is clear to all that the domination of an ignorant, irresponsible element can be prevented by constitutional laws which shall exclude from voting both negroes and whites not having education or other qualifications thought to be necessary for a proper electorate. The danger of the control of an ignorant electorate has therefore passed. With this change, the interest which many of the Southern white citizens take in the welfare of the negroes has increased. The colored men must base their hope on the results of their own industry, self-restraint, thrift, and business success, as well as upon the aid and comfort and sympathy which they may receive from their white neighbors of the South.

There was a time when Northerners who sympathized with the negro in his necessary struggle for better conditions sought to give him the suffrage as a protection to enforce its exercise against the prevailing sentiment of the South. The movement proved to be a failure. What remains is the fifteenth amendment to the Constitution and the right to have statutes of States specifying qualifications for electors subjected to the test of compliance with that amendment. This is a great protection to the negro. It never will be repealed, and it never ought to be repealed. If it had not passed, it might be difficult now to adopt it; but with it in our fundamental law, the policy of Southern legislation must and will tend to obey it, and so long as the statutes of the States meet the test of this amendment and are not otherwise in conflict with the Constitution and laws of the United States, it is not the disposition or within the province of the Federal Government to interfere with the regulation by Southern States of their domestic affairs. There is in the South a stronger feeling than ever among the intelligent well-to-do, and influential element in favor of the industrial education of the negro and the encouragement of the race to make themselves useful members of the community. The progress which the negro has made in the last fifty years, from slavery, when its statistics are reviewed, is marvelous, and it furnishes every reason to hope that in the next twenty-five years a still greater improvement in his condition as a productive member of society, on the farm, and in the shop, and in other occupations may come.

The negroes are now Americans. Their ancestors came here years ago against their will, and this is their only country and their only flag. They have shown themselves anxious to live for it and to die for it. Encountering the race feeling against them, subjected at times to cruel injustice growing out of it, they may well have our profound sympathy and aid in the struggle they are making. We are charged with the sacred duty of making their path as smooth and easy as we can. Any recognition of their distinguished men, any appointment to office from among their number, is properly taken as an encouragement and an appreciation of their progress, and this just policy should be pursued when suitable occasion offers.

But it may well admit of doubt whether, in the case of any race, an appointment of one of their number to a local office in a community in which the race feeling is so widespread and acute as to interfere with the ease and facility with which the local government business can be done by the appointee is of sufficient benefit by way of encouragement to the race to outweigh the recurrence and increase of race feeling which such an appointment is likely to engender. Therefore the Executive, in recognizing the negro race by appointments, must exercise a careful discretion not thereby to do it more harm than good. On the other hand, we must be careful not to encourage the mere pretense of race feeling manufactured in the interest of individual political ambition.

Personally, I have not the slightest race prejudice or feeling, and recognition of its existence only awakens in my heart a deeper sympathy for those who have to bear it or suffer from it, and I question the wisdom of a policy which is likely to increase it. Meantime, if nothing is done to prevent it, a better feeling between the negroes and the whites in the South will continue to grow, and more and more of the white people will come to realize that the future of the South is to be much benefited by the industrial and intellectual progress of the negro. The exercise of political franchises by those of this race who are intelligent and well to do will be acquiesced in, and the right to vote will be withheld only from the ignorant and irresponsible of both races.
So little reference has been made to the color of US citizens in past inaugural addresses that only these three presidents mentioned it the decades that followed the Civil War when the wounds were fresh and their need to reconcile North and South, black and white was greatest. There have only been three additional presidential inaugurals that talked about white and black Americans in the last century, all Republicans who prominently used racism to win office .

Trump's was the first to reference color of US citizens since Ronald Reagan's Second Inaugural Address in 1985 when he said:
Let us resolve that we, the people, will build an American opportunity society in which all of us--white and black, rich and poor, young and old--will go forward together, arm in arm.
In 1969, at the height of the American War in Vietnam and the civil rights movement, Richard M. Nixon used his First Inaugural Address to divide Americans along color lines. But even while he was taking over the reins of the US war in Vietnam, which I have called an American Holocaust, the picture he painted of the US was a far cry from Trump's American Carnage, for one thing, he thought America was already great:
The second third of this century has been a time of proud achievement. We have made enormous strides in science and industry and agriculture. We have shared our wealth more broadly than ever. We have learned at last to manage a modern economy to assure its continued growth.

We have given freedom new reach, and we have begun to make its promise real for black as well as for white.
While these five past presidents felt a need to talk about race in their inaugural address, none of them, even Nixon and Reagan, represented the kind extreme white nationalism that now occupies the Oval Office. This 2014 tweet shows how the new president has a fundamentally racist worldview:
Leaving aside the quality of the job Obama did, why should the next African-American person running for president be judged as the same because he or she has the same skin color? Only a racist thinks like that! Not to mention the fact that many white men have done really terrible jobs as president, Republicans even, and that didn't stop the country from electing another one.

The new president has been a white racist for a long time. In 1973 the Justice Department sued the Trump organization for racial housing discrimination in Brooklyn, Queens, and Staten Island. The doorman were instructed to turn away African-Americans looking to rent. The 26 year old Donald Trump hired Joe McCarthy's attorney, accused the media of "reverse discrimination" and accused the Justice Department of acting like "Storm troopers" and "Gestapo." Now he attacks the gov't agencies critical of him with references to "Nazi Germany." Trump hasn't changed from then till now.

He went on to seal his reputation for openly hating African-American people in my home town of Atlantic City, NJ where he as fined $200K by the casino commission in 1992 for removing African-American dealers from the floor at the request of big spenders like himself:
“When Donald and Ivana came to the casino, the bosses would order all the black people off the floor,” Kip Brown, a former employee at Trump’s Castle, told The New Yorker for a 2015 article“It was the eighties, I was a teen-ager, but I remember it: they put us all in the back.” 
The racism stemming from the enslavement of Africans by Europeans on these shores has always been the Achilles' heel and unfulfilled promise of American democracy. Now, in the most racially polarized election in living memory, US citizens who think themselves "white," including those on the fake Left who thought themselves too "lily-white" to vote for the lesser evil to stop Trump, have elected a president who is arguably the most racist in the history of this nation.

While it is not yet clear to many, this is the key dilemma facing the United States and the world coming out of the 2016 election. If we are not to suffer a world war and a holocaust much worst than the last one, we must all be resolute in our struggle against this monster. Saturday was a good start.



Postscripts 

This Donald Trump attack on Hillary Clinton was widely adopted by the Green Party and others in the pro-Putin Left as their main argument that Clinton was a greater racist than Trump.

Syria is the Paris Commune of the 21st Century!

Click here for a list of my other blogs on Syria

And on the subject of Syria, here is one last tweet from David Duke. I wonder if anyone on the #fakeLeft will be embarrassed by this:

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