Thursday, August 17, 2017

Moment of Truth

The Racist-in-Chief tweeted this morning that it was "sad to see the history and culture of our great country being ripped apart with the removal of our beautiful statues and monuments. You can't change history, but you can learn from it."

Obviously he hasn't learned a goddamn thing from "history."

History teaches us that prejudice is wrong, that judging a person or a group solely on the basis of race is wrong; it teaches that prejudice leads to racism, a systematic denial of basic human rights to a group of people based on prejudice. History teaches us that racism leads to physical and mental suffering, to rape, enslavement, torture, murder, and genocide. The history of the 20th Century teaches us that racism is a virulent evil, one that must be eradicated for the good of humanity, indeed, for our very survival. The lessons of history teach us that racism left unchecked leads to war, destruction, and death.

America, for all its faults, was thought to have grown morally throughout the last century, to have reached a point where at least it was ready to outgrow racism, if not to actually begin to do so. The election of Barack Obama was hailed as “the end of racism!”  Some Americans had their doubts – I was one of them - but it seemed that the arc of history was truly bending towards justice.


The election of Donald Trump heralded a sharp reversal of this trend. The white nationalists, the neo-Nazis, and the Ku Klux Klan all celebrated his election, seeing it as evidence of their growing political power, and the ascension of one of their own to the White House. Neo-Nazis famously cried “Hail Trump!” after the stunning results of last November. And this past week, Trump proved that he truly was one of them.

Never before has an American President defended neo-Nazis. Never before has a President claimed that “there were good people on both sides” in describing a white race riot. Donald Trump dropped the semi-ambiguous facade he’s coyly maintained since the election, and came out foursquare for white racists and neo-Nazis. And in doing so, Trump betrayed his oath of office. By siding with the spiritual heirs of the Third Reich, with racists and anti-Semites, Trump has abandoned  his office, and spat upon the Constitution and the American people.

Donald Trump has unquestionably demonstrated his unfitness for office. His foul and unstable temperament, lack of experience, and documented racist and anti-American sentiments render him not only incapable of performing the duties of the President, but disinclined to do so! He wants to be a king; well, he can be king of the penitentiary, if the Mueller investigation bears fruit. He wants to be loved?—he should get a dog.

Trump’s now unquestionable racism should come as no surprise. Throughout his life, he has demonstrated racist thoughts and beliefs, and a pronounced tendency to lie, time and time again. From his very first appearance in the New York Times with his father, as the defendants of a housing discrimination suit brought against them by the federal government, his strident and false belief in the guilt of the  Central Park Five, his first forays into politics with his loud and continued promotion of the lie that Barack Obama was not born in America, to nearly every moment of his presidential campaign and time in office, starting with his lies about Mexicans at the beginning of his campaign, his lies about millions of imaginary unregistered voters, and continuing up to the present moment, which finds him defending neo-Nazis and racist white nationalists. Trump has now aligned himself with the most odious and hateful segment of the American populace.

This is a pivotal moment in American history. This is the time that in later years will be remembered as the moment when America at last lived up to its rhetoric, and rejected the evil in the White House, or the moment when the American Experiment finally faltered and died. It remains to be seen if we have the will to do what is right.

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