Yes Virginia, there is racism in America

It’s the year 2019, and we are still having this same debate.  No matter how many times we hash this out, we will undoubtedly do the same thing again sometime in the near future.  That’s just what we do as Americans.  We keep doing the same stupid things over and over without learning from our past to make our futures better.

Racism has no ideology.  It has no political leanings either.  It is as much a founding principle of America as the Constitution itself.  Racism was written into our founding documents and formed the basis of many of our laws and court decisions.  To pretend that it’s not a major issue is nothing more than trying to fool yourself into believing that the sun does not rise.

From Gov. Ralph Northam’s photo to the implicit bias that affects racial disparities in policing, racism colors how we act among ourselves and how we treat others who are different from us.  There’s no reason to continue to tap dance around the issue any longer, so I’ll give my view on how I perceive all these incidents.  You can call it blacksplaining if you wish.

Personally, a blackface incident in 1984 is something that should have never occurred.  In 1984, people knew that blackface was offensive.  Even if you’re within the company of your own friends, you should never engage in something that damn offensive much less allow someone to take a picture of you doing this.  That’s plain damn stupid.

At the same time, if you have voted for or otherwise supported an elected official or political party that condones displays of racist tendencies and attitudes in 2018, you need to STFU with condemnation of an act from 1984 if you’re not doing the same thing for the 2018 acts.  Since you’re a supporter of the 2018 actor(s), then you’re obviously not condemning their acts and the STFU clause applies in full.

Not to paint a broad brush, but many of us black people know that folks exhibit racist tendencies or actions at time.  That even includes people who are associates or even best friends of ours.  That’s human nature at work.  We are capable of perceiving the difference between someone doing or saying something stupid and otherwise being a decent person vs a complete and utter racist a**hole who doesn’t give a crap about us or our lives.  There is a very distinct difference between those two.  When your sanity and sometimes survival relies on your instincts picking up those difference, you tend to become very adept at sensing racists and racism.  As John Blake wrote in a CNN opinion piece, “Some of the biggest champions for black people in America’s past have been white politicians who were racists.”

At one time or another, we have all said or done something that could be offensive to someone of a different race.  We don’t always know what offends other people, so it’s virtually impossible to go through life without offending someone at least once.  So, if you’re sitting there smug within yourself thinking that you’ve never said or done something that may be racially offensive, then you’re doing nothing more than lying to yourself.

We, as Americans know that racism is a problem.

Yet, many of us refuse to take the necessary steps to avoid stepping into the same pile of dog feces and re-enacting this same conversation time and time again.  I’m not suggesting that we wipe out racists or racism because I honestly do not believe that is humanly possible.  What we need to do instead is use these incidents to discuss ways to curtail our latent tendencies to avoid stepping into the same pile of feces over and over.

Let’s learn to love ourselves and those around us.  Do not allow people to goad you into hating an entire group of people over the actions of a bad actor or two.  That’s basically how racism grows.  One black man doing something bad does not mean that all black men are the same way.  One white man saying or doing something bad does not mean that all white men are the same way.  Don’t lose sight of the fact that racism also extends beyond the black/white paradigm too.  Asians, Native Americans, and others also shoulder the burden of racial animosity as well.  Let’s learn to treat each other as individuals and not stereotypes.  Then, let’s teach that to the next generation so they can teach their kids as well.

Update 2/5/19 8:15pm EST:

After watching ABC Nightly News, I had two additional trains of thought that I needed to add here, so forgive me in making this post longer than it already was.  I believe these thoughts pair well with a discussion on racism and how we, as a country, are loath to deal with the issues head on.

Today would have been Trayvon Benjamin Martin’s 24th birthday if he were still alive.  People wrongly associate George Zimmerman’s defense with the Stand Your Ground law, but his defense did not invoke that law at all.  However, what you never hear anyone mention is that Trayvon also had the right to stand his ground in self-defense with someone stalking him while he was walking home from the store.  Why does one get the presumption of the law while the victim does not?  That’s how discretely bias works in human psyche.

In a separate case, Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall announced that the Hoover, AL police officer who shot and killed Emantic Fitzgerald “EJ” Bradford Jr. will not face any charges as a result of his actions.  I expected the shooting to be deemed as a justified shooting, but that still doesn’t undo the sometimes heavy-handed response that officers have when suspected perpetrators are black.  There have been numerous studies on implicit bias and how it affects policing.  Implicit bias shows up in several forms and is not exclusive to race only.

I know it often boils down to a training issue, but it boils my blood to see innocent people like Bradford, Crawford, Rice, Scott, and others die unnecessarily at the hands of police while other people have committed mass killings of innocent people and are captured alive, often without any injury at all.  As long as we continue to ostrich this stuff because we’re not personally affected, the trends will continue.  As a sworn officer myself, I understand the split second decision-making issue that’s compounded by the stress of the situation.  We cannot allow that to be a crutch when we have scientific evidence of an existing problem with the decision-making process, and we can use that evidence to slow the trend of innocent citizens being killed.  We owe it to ourselves and our kids.

Second and final update 2/5/19 8:30pm EST:

Liam Neeson should be praised for his brutal honesty involving race, IMHO.  Instead, he’s being castigated for being open enough to say out loud what many others have thought to themselves.  People need to take an extra minute to consider his entire story before going all Samuel L. Jackson angry at him.  When you take in the totality of the circumstances, there are several lessons to be learned.

Yes, he went out seeking a chance to unleash holy hell on a black person to get revenge for someone close to him being attacked.  What people fail to consider is that, by his own admission, he walked around for a week in areas where he expected to be confronted with a situation where he could “defend” himself against a black man.  Yet, an entire week went by without a single, solitary black man doing anything to him that would give him an excuse to beat someone down.

*Housekeeping note:  I’ll try to post as I can for the near future.  I changed shifts, and I won’t always have the time to keep fresh sheets on the bed.  I’ll do what I can to counter the moderated posts as well.

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2,291 thoughts on “Yes Virginia, there is racism in America

  1. I had a comment post but now it’s gone or at least it isn’t showing on my screen
    I’ve read comments where some have been saying they have been having problems as well. I’ve had sign in problems on my laptop but that’s it. Now when I’m on my phone, as I am now, that’s another sorry I seem to have been encountering problems with the blog for several weeks

    Like

    • Some posts have been getting tagged as spam. I don’t know what’s causing that to happen. I guess this is WordPress’ way of getting me to spend money and upgrade to a better account.

      Like

  2. If I could give you all a glimpse into my mind, this is what you would have seen while I was watching that press conference.

    I went against my norms and watched that presser in its entirety. I honestly believe the electric shocks that I kept feeling in my head were brain cells using defibrillators on each other. To top things off, this guy is in control of our nuclear arsenal….

    Liked by 3 people

    • I listened myself as noted below..Trump really is dumb about most things. sadly the one thing he got right is being a marketer..He was all over the place in the press conference.

      Liked by 1 person

    • I watched about 3 Q&A moments and could not take it anyone more. Facts and reality are just not part of this President.

      And if you want a sad laugh, I saw a clip Maddow did on Trump’s lie about being 6’3″. She made the point that it really does not matter if he is only 6’1″ but damn if he does not keep lying and his medical team keeps lying for him. And yet we can verify he is NOT 6’3″

      Liked by 1 person

    • Considering that ~35% of this country can actually listen to this kind of lunacy, even in real time, and still unabashedly say loud-and-proud “I’m with this guy,” never fails to send chills up my spine.

      I hope to Goddess the remaining 65% can deal with his co-conspirators in a responsible fashion.

      Liked by 3 people

  3. I never recall Sky coming on saying anything like – I’m looking out my office window as I wait for my driver to pick me up for my golf match, telling Jeffrey and others how good he looked, I don’t drive to the grocery store becuse I don’t want my car dinged.
    There is more but that is plenty for now

    You know comments from someone trying to portray they are somebody. Mind you it didn’t work but the attempt was there
    Simply embarrassing

    Liked by 2 people

    • LOL. You are not even a nobody. And, btw, it was Kam, not Sky. Also, I mentioned Latrina was my driver. Don’t forget that. You, I wish I was a least a nobody, big guy you.

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  4. Why it’s almost like just yesterday that some racist scum were claiming a hoax.
    _______________________
    Chicago police are pushing back on media reports that said the alleged attack on “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett was a hoax and say the reports are “unconfirmed by case detectives.”

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  5. Like

  6. Liked by 4 people

  7. Trump just implied drug dealers should get the death penalty like China. Because China doesnt have a drug problem. goodness he needs a teleprompter

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    • See what I mean about “A scandal a day”?

      Any other President, that’d been fought over and above the fold news for three days.

      This guy? Another crazy thing he said to file away and maybe document when it comes up again.

      If it ever comes to that I hope one of the Articles of Impeachment reads simply “Crazier than a shithouse rat”, just to cover all the stray items.

      Just to be able to give some House members a chance to go on record.

      Liked by 2 people

  8. The hits keep coming

    DOJ warns White House that national emergency will likely be blocked: report

    https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/430122-doj-warns-white-house-that-national-emergency-will-likely-be-blocked

    The over/under of the number of lawsuits that will be filed – I’m going with 25

    It’s about Trump’s ego at this point. He has been yammering and yapping about his wall since 2016. Mind you he never decided to assist in closing the government or declare a national emergency until the Dem won the HoR. He decided to go at Pelosi and he lost bigly.
    – lost the PR battle
    – lost the funding battle

    So now he is going with the national emergency desperation move. If he prevails against the lawsuits he can tell his base like Rocky told Adrian “I did it”
    If he doesn’t prevail it will be a 2020 rallying cry with tears about the swamp and how he is needed to fight the swampers

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  9. I was listening to Breitbart this morning and a lot of the callers were upset Pelosi played Trump like a fiddle. I didn’t think they would acknowledge that. Even the host agreed.

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  10. I did not realize the Dems actually by LAW (assuming signed) barred Trump from building walls in certain areas along the border.
    Trump is being owned in so many ways but does not know how much he got owned. But he is desperate and it is battle to fight the usurping of power from our Constitution.
    Of course he and Fox can keep telling the suckers that all that is needed now is to FINISH the WALL that Mexico is paying for. LOL

    Liked by 3 people

  11. Are there any long time Bookman readers who would have ever thought to see Bookman and Rick Wilson on the same page? Trump is uniting this country like no president has ever done before. This thread goes well with Bookman’s.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Well Rick has been one of the true never Trumper Republicans. Not this well I didn’t vote for him then defend, deflect and make excuses for bim. Nor the I voted for him but don’t support him then defend, deflect and make excuses for him
      No doubt I have policy disagreements with him as I’m sure Bookman does but must give Wilson kudos for sticking to his guns

      Liked by 2 people

    • You’d think that with so many shouting basically the same message from so many sources, some serious elected Republicans would…
      hahaha. Just caught myself. “Serious elected Republicans.” My bad.

      Liked by 2 people

  12. In the spending bill Trump will sign today he and along with the Rs will have negotiated 25 percent of his 5.7B wall funding demand. Problem for Trump is that except for levees there isn’t a dime for funding for walls as he has described. Only monies for the type of barriers already in place
    And remember Trump’s commens on no raise for non-military federal workers. Heck I think there was even a comment or two in support of it on this blog.
    Well Trump signing that bill today will mean federal workers are getting a raise. Not a large one but more than the nothing Trump wanted to give. And it that increase will include backpay as if the raise started at the beginning of the year
    Trump and the Rs really showed their negotiating prowess over the last two months. I’m old enough to recall the switch from using Pelosi in campaign ads because it would be good for the Rs going into the midterm to we really want Pelosi as speaker because it will be great for the Repubs
    So far so great, huh?
    Trump and the FC have Pelosi on the ropes and we are just getting started

    Liked by 1 person

  13. 1 of 10 excellent tweet from Jay

    Liked by 3 people

      • Since Jay is killing it, perhaps you can remind “killer” what it takes for Congress to impeach a prez. Having the poochy lip is not one. Tell jay I said hi.

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          • Well, thats easy. It requires a criminal offense to have been committed. Last I checked, taking funds from the DOD and redirecting for the use to secure our border for the good of all is not a criminal offense.

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          • Wurt da furk?
            No it does NOT, absolutely positively NOT, require a ” a criminal offense to have been committed”.
            “High Crimes and Misdemeanors” can mean absolutely anything a majority of the House and 2/3 of the Senate determine them, or it, to be.
            They can boot him because of his ugly spray tan if they like. Or the way he says “Russher.”
            That said, you keep using the phrase “secure our border,” which at this point is such a howler given what his vanity project would actually achieve, I’d hope you’d know to stop peddling it.
            It doesn’t get any more credible, and certainly not any more urgent, EMERGENCY, SIREEENS a-blarin’, with repetition.

            Liked by 3 people

  14. “Repubs must not allow Pres Obama to subvert the Constitution of the US for his own benefit & because he is unable to negotiate w/ Congress.” Donald J. Trump

    @PaulInNH

    What a difference a day makes !

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Rep. Omar didn’t forget about Iran-Contra

    https://www.thedailybeast.com/rep-ilhan-omar-clashes-with-iran-contra-convict-elliott-abrams-over-us-role-in-central-american

    ” “You later said that the U.S. policy in El Salvador was a fabulous achievement,” Omar said. “Yes or no, do you still think so?”

    “From the day that President Duarte was elected in a free election, to this day,” Abrams said, dramatically slamming a finger on the table in front of him. “El Salvador has been a democracy. That’s a fabulous achievement.”

    “Yes or no, do you think that massacre was a fabulous achievement?” Omar pressed on. “That happened under our watch.”

    “That is a ridiculous question, and I will not respond to it,” Abrams said.

    “Yes or no?” Omar pushed again.

    “No,” Abrams replied as Omar said, “I will take that as a yes.” “

    Like

  16. Trump claimed he needed $5.7Bn for the wall and now he’s going to declare a National Emergency and take $8Bn from other budgets to pay for some wall building.
    I’m looking forward to the Rs in the Senate voting to give the President the power to do whatever he likes if he declares a national emergency.
    I wonder what they are going to do when President Harris takes money from the Pentagon budget in order to fund drug treatment centers.
    She doesn’t even need to declare the opioid crisis a national emergency – Trump did that already

    Liked by 4 people

  17. Let me see – Amazon wanted $1.3 Bn in tax incentives from NY and as a result they were going to guarantee 25,000 jobs.
    For you doing the math at home, that is a subsidy of $520,000 per job.
    The salaries (ignore the fringe because that isn’t taxed) are going to average a little over $110k
    At NY’s top tax rate of 8.8%, they’ll be breaking even on that deal after a mere 58 years or so.
    That’s Scott Walker – Foxconn levels of stupid

    Liked by 2 people

        • 8,000,000 sq ft hdqtrs built by 3k union employees gone. 25k jobs average pay of 150k gone. Millions and millions of tax revune gone long term gone. 25k employees spending money in the local economy gone. Need I go further?

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          • So, what makes Amazon any more special than any other business to where they deserve taxpayer subsidies when they are already a very profitable company?

            If Amazon truly wanted it, they could still build there without a single penny in incentives. The fact that people are willing to subsidize very profitable corporations while pissing on their own poor residents should shame anyone who thinks this is okay.

            I’m not the most liberal person when it comes to business and finance. I truly believe in supply vs demand. When your business model relies on getting huge giveaways, then your business model is not sound. The market will take care of that by replacing you with someone with a better plan. Subsidizing a bad business hurts the little guy who is trying to get started.

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          • 25k jobs average pay of 150k gone.
            LOLOLOLOL – someone really doesn’t understand the difference between the cost of a job and the average pay.
            Our fringe averages about 35% – and it’s probably the same ballpark for Amazon.

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      • Then you tell the blog how many additional jobs would be created and at what average salary. Substantiate that then take it off of PaulinH’s numbers to see how the 58 year number decreases
        Post when ready

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    • And that’s before you get to increased rent prices making the place too expensive for the locals, as in Amazon’s home town of Seattle (I wonder WHY they are looking for other places) – oh, and the increased demands on local transportation

      Side topic – why do RWers hate the “free market”?

      Liked by 2 people

  18. “Corporate sponsorship of small businesses have exactly what to do with cities and states giving up the farm for a few jobs? There’s a point of diminished returns where the taxes given up are not replaced by the investment of the company.”

    Exactly. I asked the question in another way but you are correct. Yes big corps work with FBEs and MBEs and yes there is benefit all around. It isn’t just some one way street where these large corps are experiencing some major burden in terms of their operations, revenues and profits.
    And what the hell do the give aways have to do with these programs?
    I missing the causation and even the correlation.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. “Rut Roh, Chicago authorities sayin the Empire dude who was “attacked by maga hat dudes” was staged? Nah, can’t be. Had to be some of those Catholic boys being racist and homophobic.”

    @MARY

    You are WORRIED about the wrong thing again.

    You cons got BIGGER FISH TO FRY than worrying about someone else’s problem.

    OH WAIT

    MUELLER GOT A BIGGER FISH TO FRY.

    Donald Trump The Blob Fish

    heeheeheeheeheeheeheeheehee

    Liked by 3 people

  20. Mary
    I read your comments on how the MBEs and FBEs benefit from large corporations. That came out of Bro’s comments regarding corporations shouldn’t be getting all these give aways. (For the record generally speaking there are benefits to these business but not just the MBEs and FBEs but also to the large corporations)
    You seem to be extrapolating that these give aways are what is driving the success of the large corporations and the success of the partnerships with MBEs and FBEs
    Can you post the study / analysis showing the direct correlation of this race to the bottom / tax incentives, abatement etc and the link to the success of MBEs and FBEs?
    If my assumption of your extrapolation is incorrect then that’s my bad. And if my bad then I ask what are you trying to convey based on Bro’s comment and your apparent link to MBEs adn FBEs?
    I live on a two way street and I promise you these large corporations aren’t going broke or suffering much hardship to engage in these and other similar programs.

    Liked by 1 person

    • And yes I have worked at large corps who participate in these programs and have and also been on the other end working on RFIs and RFPs were those questions are asked by the larger corporations when seeking contractors to work with them

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    • My comments were only to emphasize that large corporations do more than just suck tax benefits from a state. They work their ass off to recruit, develop, finance and do business with mbes and fbes.

      Corporations have stockholders that expect profits. They employee thosands and thousands of employees who expect raises and healthcare benefits and a secure safe work environment. Attracting new business to a city/state by offering incentives is not a bad thing. It grows the supply chain that helps communities flourish. IMO and experience.

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      • So the giveaways have nothing to do with the FBE and MBE programs. Of course I knew this and also knew you couldn’t provide any substantiation. It was weak to be honest but give you a C for trying
        These giveaways are only going to get worse. It is a race to the bottom and as I have already mentioned there are Dem controlled states doing it as well. This notion that you can continue to lesson the burden of these corporations as some make record profits (See Amazon) and it all works out long term on the macro level in terms of taxation and the services paid for by these taxes is poppycock.
        Supply Side BULL SHIT…
        Short term it looks nice. Long term it’s a LOSER

        Liked by 1 person

  21. Cities and states need to quit giving away the farm just for a pittance in jobs. If you ask me, the companies should be paying cities in order to set up shop. Everything in this country is rigged to help the wealthy to the detriment of everyone else. It’s not enough that they fucked America with the Trump Tax Cuts. There should be no further need for imcentives as many of them were awash enough in cash to post record numbers for stock buybacks.

    Liked by 1 person

      • How many small disadvantaged minority and female businesses do you see getting billions in tax abatement and other type deals? In actuality, white females tend to benefit the most from affirmative action programs, so that would kinda run counter to your question.

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        • Female owned business (FBE) And Minority owned businesses (MBE) rely heavily on corporate sponsorship and is their lifeblood of sustainable business. The more large corporations the better small businesses do.

          Fact

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          • Corporate sponsorship of small businesses have exactly what to do with cities and states giving up the farm for a few jobs? There’s a point of diminished returns where the taxes given up are not replaced by the investment of the company.

            Liked by 1 person

          • Large corporations that relocate to major cities (Atlanta) committ to supplier diversity goals. Existing corporations sponsor and fund the GMSDC and many other diversity efforts at universities, trade schools and public schools that helps develop minority business and prepare young people for future employment. I would encourage you to look up a few of the large corporations Annual Report and see what kind of expenditures they have with MBEs and FBEs.

            Most all of them increase their expenditures as a percent of their overall spend annually. It is a corporate goal that is included in every Officers personal goals.

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          • I may have to look again, but I did some research a few years back and most cities and states ended up losing big time on giveaways.

            At one time, the packages were a good investment for growth. However, greed changed the whole narrative. Incentive packages are now almost guaranteed to be loss leaders for the community where losses are never recouped. The whole supply/demand relationship has been damaged beyond repair because of corporate greed. I wouldn’t give away anything. If a company loves my city, they are free to invest there. Any incentive package should come with substantial stock ownership for the community so there is some true sense of involvement in the future of the community.

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      • Like

  22. Have I mentioned I’m really glad NYC and Amazon have parted ways?
    See also:

    Liked by 2 people

    • A significant effort by major corporations in and around Atlanta spend a lot of time and effort working with local and state officals on recruiting businesses to the state. It’s not something new or is it something that will stop.

      It makes you wonder if it will become a red state vs a blue state thing more now than ever before.

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      • Actually, I still find it stunning that she cheered this outcome. I saw one of her posts that said something like “ if we have $3B to give away then lets use it in the community, pay teachers more, etc.”

        I can’t get beyond that ignorant statement. It was tax incentives, not $3B of cash being given to Amazon. I mean, I know the left likes her and thats fine, but she is acting quite bizarre. She is a wrecking ball for the dems, imo.

        Like

    • I remember when Bookman Cons told me that Sessions wasn’t racist or bigoted even when I provided them with evidence to show that his alleged accomplishment of bankrupting the Klan and other deeds were embellished lies. I’ve known Sessions since his days in Alabama state politics. He hasn’t changed his stripes at all, nor did I expect him to do so.

      Liked by 1 person

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