This past weekend I visited the Virginia Museum of History and Culture to learn more about the history of Virginia as it relates to the state’s role in the institution of slavery and democracy. I wanted to learn more about the Framers of the Constitution and the role Native Americans played in developing America, and let me tell you, I wasn’t disappointed. They impressed me with the stories, artifacts, historical recollections, and portraits. It was overwhelming to read the many descriptions of how often slaves revolted and rebelled against their oppression. It made me happy, and the visit helped to explain why Black people are always fighting for equality. We’ve always fought, and we continue to fight.
For me, my trip to Richmond fell into my personal quest to understand America’s past. Looking at the past has taught me a lot about why we are where we are today. The visit to the museum has also helped to bring peace about the possible outcomes of the 2020 election. My people have been through a hell of a lot in our 400 years in this nation. What else can America do to us? I have concluded no matter how we vote next November, nothing will change about America.
Why Nothing Will Change
Nothing will change in 2020 because none of the 2020 candidates have a firm grasp of how we got here, and if they have a firm grasp of the actions, practices, and institutions that led to this monstrosity of a moment we’re living through, none of them will call it what it is and deal with it head on. Because of this, I see nothing changing in 2020 no matter who wins.
Institutional and systemic racism got America a Donald Trump presidency in 2016, and it has led to all the horrific policy decisions and legislation that led up to a Trump presidency. Until America deals with racism and inequality, we can never move forward. Our sins date back to before Christopher Columbus discovered the New World which wasn’t new at all, to the continued practice of slavery. Virginia played a huge role in slavery and was the framework for how the federal government legislates today.
African and Slave History of Rebellion
To understand where we are today, you’d have to dig deep into the history books to understand the role Whites played in controlling and oppressing Africans and slaves to ensure Whites maintained power and to ensure those oppressed had no rights. To understand this past aids in understanding America’s White population’s refusal to hear about how inequitable they’ve been since the 1600s. My visit to the museum this weekend helps me to understand the narcissistic selfishness of Whites, and why they believe everything must be about them, even when it shouldn’t. My visit to the birthplace of democracy helped me understand how even liberals don’t know how deeply entrenched most of them are in White Supremacy.
My visit reaffirmed my commitment to fighting injustice and inequality for African Americans.
From slavery to current day, the management of enslaved and free Blacks and Africans has always been a topic of debate to slaveowners and our government. Overtime, both government and Whites in power developed elaborate systems of controls to ensure slaves didn’t rebel. Those systems legal, religion, incentives, rewards, punishment, and intimidation to keep enslaved people from fleeing and to keep them working. The same thing happens today, we just don’t associate those practices as extensions of slaveowners attempting to control and intimidate Blacks.
Slaveowners were always in fear slaves would revolt. In the South, White southerners prohibited slaves from learning to read, restricted their movement, prevented them from meeting, and slave codes were created to punish Whites for helping slaves or even emancipating them. Our freedom meant the end of their existence, and perhaps punishment for all the injustices and atrocities they committed. The founders of our government knew this.
“But as it is, we have the wolf by the ear, and we can neither hold him, nor safely let him go. Justice is in one scale, and self-preservation in the other.” ~ Thomas Jefferson
Fast forward to 2019. Blacks and Whites are still being prevented from addressing the 400 years of Black inequality and being punished for considering anything that will not preserve White people. It’s the reason for the invention of identity politics. America developed a political system which ensures it always protects sure White identities, which is why they over-represent Congress.
Take Black and Brown and candidates for President 2020 Castro, Harris, and Booker. They all are familiar with the struggles of Blacks in America, and they fully know of inequalities of our systems and institution, yet none of them have plans to address the problems comprehensively. In fact, their plans resemble the plans of White candidates. Some people like Kamala Harris have openly stated she would not create or support plans that only helped Black people, despite her acknowledging the inequality and inequities in America. She has plans White Iowans, but can create a plan for Black Americans. Creating plans without dismantling systems is like putting band-aids on Stage 4 cancer.
That remedy just ain’t good enough.
It will take more than band-aids to fight the cancer we’re dealing with because of America’s racist institutions and systems. If 2020 Presidential candidates can’t be truthful with us considering what will be necessary to recover from a racist Trump Administration, why should we trust them? If we know Presidential hopefuls are incapable of changing our systems, why bother to vote for them? We can’t even get candidates to address reparations. Dems introduced a bill to commission a study on reparations and it‘s nothing but a smokescreen. Introducing this bill is nothing more than putting a pacifier in a baby’s mouth to shut it up until it gets tired, spits it out, and starts crying again. And any candidate who has taken the time to review America’s long history in anti-Black inequality practices and can’t see the need for a reparations remedy is a disgrace and shouldn’t be considered for the head janitor position of the Publix bathroom cleaning committee, let alone the head of a nation.
Each 2020 candidate is the epitome of inequality, and most Americans are debating which unfair candidate we will make our next President. It’s unbelievable. To change this constant state of inequality, Americans must change how they look at candidates and what they offer us. Our nation’s history is loaded with Presidents who have governed us unequally. With the current 2020 candidate pool, every single one of them has plans to continue the same institution of race-based inequality the framers practiced. Just because you put lipstick on a pig doesn’t mean it stops being a pig!
It’s time for voters who love a democracy to demand more, expect more, and require inequality and fairness for our vote. It’s time voters recall our history. Visit the first states in the Union and read how they treated Africans and Blacks. Trace the early beginnings of inequality to the injustices and inequalities of today. Look at how presidents governed us in the 1700s and compare it to later Supreme Court battles, legislation, and their own words. We must begin to rebel against zero-sum thinking. We must rebel against the propaganda fed to us by both liberal and conservative media. One isn’t better than the others.
We must rebel against anything that oppresses, to include our leaders. America is long overdue for a anti-Black and anti-inequality revolt, and I am here for it!
If you’re not for it, you’re against it. It’s just that simple.
America Still Has The Wolf By The Ears
One of the most famous quotes by Thomas Jefferson addressing slavery is as relevant today as it was back in 1820. In a discussion with John Holmes about, Jefferson said: “But as it is, we have the wolf by the ear, and we can neither hold him, nor safely let him go. Justice is in one scale, and self-preservation in the other.” This has been the mindset of White people in America for 400 years and counting.
The zero-sum game all 2020 Presidential candidates are playing is self-preservation. If you understand America history, after reviewing all those “plans” of 2020 Presidential candidates, you know all of their plans for their Presidency are nothing more than dressing up White America’s desire to go backwards to the way we used to be, because those plans do not include true justice or objectives to achieve equality. True justice would eliminate race. Real justice means they’d each have a plan to address America’s institutional and systemic racism from the foundation to the top. Real justice levels the playing field. Not one 2020 candidate has a plan to address America’s centuries of anti-Black efforts.
Nothing addresses the ugliness that read its head in Barack Obama’s country from 2008 to 2016. Nothing in their plans really gets to the heart of America’s infatuation with inequality. None of the plans of the Black and Brown candidates truly addresses issues of their ethnic constituencies. Black and Brown 2020 candidates can’t say what needs to be said to America because they’d predictably alienate their jealous, needy prospective White and White passing voters.
So, if you’re looking for 2020 to be “better” or different from things are in 2019, they won’t be, and that’s why it won’t make a difference about who you vote for in November 2020. Things won’t be better because America refuses to address the elephant in the room. We need to deal with institutional racism.
It doesn’t matter if Trump resigns, if he’s hauled off to jail, impeached, removed, and pardoned, if he gets another full-term in office, or if the Democrats win every seat from the Presidency down, nothing will change because America refuses to address institutional racism and systemic traps that prevent our democracy from working for all the citizens,especially Black ones. Black people have been America’s favorite target since we began arriving here against our will in the 1600s, and it still prevents us from taking part in a democracy. The control tactics are a little different, but the results are still the same. No matter who you vote for, the sun will still rise until it doesn’t.
I’m not underestimating the threat that comes from another Trump term, but I really don’t care at this point. White people put Trump in office. They didn’t care one bit about how bad his presidency would hurt the people he came down the escalator bashing. Those people won’t care when they go to the polls in 2020. They voted for coded White Supremacy, and if they live to see another national election, they’ll do it again, because White Supremacy apparently even trumps democracy.
Waiting to speak the truth isn’t an option, and any candidate who doesn’t address equality and the truth as we near our breaking point don’t deserve a point. Any candidate who has already served in Congress and doesn’t have a record on civil rights doesn’t deserve our votes in 2020, but I know many like me will take one on the chin another year, putting off the needs and wants of Blacks to save our ungrateful, disrespectful nation.
Asking us Blacks in particular to wait to fix systemic racism from 1619 to 2019 is too damned long to wait. It’s a fucking insult to ask descendants of slaves (ADOS) to wait one more minute for equality and for their right to take part in this democracy.
Until White people and people of color who practice White Supremacy in America understand what got us here, it doesn’t matter who any of us vote for. A vote for the status quo in 2020 is a vote for injustice and inequality, and it appears most American are ready and willing to take that vote. I’m giving America the side-eye like the rest of the world at this point. I feel like I learned I lived with people all of my life and discovering years later you were adopted. America is a dream. America is a lie.
It’s a lie because justice and equality are always in one scale, and the self-preservation of Whites is in the other. For Blacks in America who have been fighting to be made whole for 400 years and counting, the weight of Whiteness is a heavy, and it seems the scale is broken.
Black Americans need a new scale, and we need White people to learn American history, listen to Black people, and be willing to sacrifice their comfort in being the status quo so that things can change in this nation. Otherwise, Blacks will keep voting and getting nothing in return. We will continue voting, and our racist institutions and systems will remain in place, tormenting the next generation of youth. The more I learn, and the more denial I see in White America, the less faith I have America.
Change must start with White people, and if our 2020 candidates can’t be the change America needs to ensure a Trump Presidency never happens again, why bother voting for any of them?
©2019 Marley K. All rights reserved.