It’s so disheartening to see some of my favorite talk show hosts stunned at the hubris and outright defiance of what for many is believed to be constitutional norms and presidential poise that this president, his administration and his congressional allies are shattering like an angry bull in a glass castle. Day after day and night after night through sheer frustration they publicly ponder when will congressional republicans for the sake of the country stop pandering and kowtowing to this amoral human being. It’s heartbreaking to see them almost elevate a dissenter in the ranks to hero when a rift appears only to see them disappointed when the rift heals and the dissenter falls back in line. Truly tragic but maybe Malcolm was right after all that chickens really do come home to roost. For those having trouble with this proverb hopefully the following clarifies the point.
“As a proverbial expression it’s half a millennium old. The older fuller form was curses are like chickens; they always come home to roost, meaning that your offensive words or actions are likely at some point to rebound on you.” (http://www.worldwidewords.org/qa/qa-chi4.htm)
Now as an Afro American I take no comfort in the threat this poses to the country because in our experience when America gets a cold Afro Americans get the flu. When it’s bad for the country it’s worse for us and I’m sure the same could be said for Afro Brazilians, Afro Cubans, Afro Colombians, Afro Latinos, etc. That unfortunate reality has nonetheless afforded us the opportunity to see current events through that prism and to recognize what may not be apparent to those unfamiliar with that reality.
Take Rudy Giuliani when he was Mayor of New York for instance. For years Afro Americans and allies in New York were sounding the alarm about Giuliani and now based on some of his recent rants he’s left pundits who were once supporters wondering what happened to “America’s Mayor.” Well the answer is not that difficult at all. What you’re witnessing today is Rudy Giuliani the man, not the politician. He’s the same man today as he was then minus the political filters. The biggest difference is it’s your interests and institutions, although shared with Afro Americans, that’s on the receiving end of his attacks today. When your interests weren’t on the receiving end you had and exercised the luxury of giving him the benefit of the doubt at our expense, after all he swore an oath to protect and defend, right? And as we know no one who has sworn an oath to protect and defend has ever broken or bent it a little, right?
Oh my, how those chickens have come home to roost.
As easy as it would be to lay the blame of a Trump presidency squarely on the doorstep of conservative republicans, racists, white men, disinterested black people, non voters, gun violence, illegal immigration and pseudo-Christians, to name a few of the usual suspects, let’s tell the whole truth. Democrats, liberals, special interest groups, Muslims, atheists, etc and yes even the Obama administration share the blame. Because politicians are more concerned with party interests than their constituents and tribal leaders are more concerned with protecting their own self interests than that of the groups they represent and all having abandoned restraint in their pursuits, it seems we’ve all inadvertently made the roost that much more attractive to those returning chickens.
For Afro Americans the Trump presidency validates our concerns and exposes the hypocrisy of friends and foes alike. For example under this administration the party of “law and order” has shown us who they think the law should protect and who they think the law should prosecute. Surprise to none, that balance leans heavily to the right of the color, class and privileged lines. They have also shown us how far they are willing to go to protect their interests by participating in practices that back unapologetically a president who is clearly a liar, a cheat, a fraud and one that’s potentially guilty of treason. They have shown that they’re willing to weaken institutions, turn a blind eye to crimes against the country and its underprivileged citizens and use their seats in Congress to justify and cover it all up. This is the same group of powerful people who side with abusive police departments and tell the powerless to just follow the law and bow down. In light of it all it’s not surprising that they will throw away the baby with the bath water to protect a president who has told and encouraged these police departments that his justice department will turn a blind eye to these abuses with a crowd of the gang in blue with badges behind him smiling and applauding him on that “great speech.” So no need for the pretense going forward nor for expecting any substantive change in favor of our interests.
But not to let the Dems and liberals off the hook. The Trump administration has shown also that if the Obama administration was so inclined they could have done much much much more in the way of pardons, ending the fake drug war, which according to John Ehrlichman was nothing more than an excuse to further disrupt and destabilize our community, and offer more substantive executive legislation to repair the damage done by this and other inhumane efforts to suppress our progress. Once again we’re owed what was forcibly taken from our enslaved ancestors and progress should have been made toward that end through the administration of the first “black” president but instead all we got was rebuke and told to just “shut up” and support him. How is that working out for us today? But look at us now, completely unprepared for the war being waged against our interests by this administration, it’s allies and even those we thought were friendly to our interests and once again the black mis-leadership class that led us here is MIA and all they can do is double down on the same nonsense that got us here in the first place.
We can’t Kumbaya our way out of this mess nor can we afford to leave our welfare in the hands of politicians who only use it as a bargaining chip to further their own political agendas. Trump isn’t completely wrong in his assertions about corruption in the FBI even though he’s only asserting it to protect himself against criminal prosecution. The FBI for some time now has been trying to equate black nationalism to terrorists and terrorism as shown in this article from the Guardian titled, “FBI terrorism unit says 'black identity extremists' pose a violent threat.” (https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/oct/06/fbi-black-identity-extremists-racial-profiling) and this one by the ACLU titled, “Manufacturing a “Black Separatist” Threat and Other Dubious Claims: Bias in Newly Released FBI Terrorism Training Materials.” (https://www.aclu.org/blog/national-security/manufacturing-black-separatist-threat-and-other-dubious-claims-bias-newly). This is the same organization led by Comey, Rosenstein, McCabe and Mueller so consider this before you elevate them to the level of hero’s because you’re rooting against this lawless administration and its allies. What’s wrong with us wanting a place in this world to call our own? Why is that considered a threat to US national security? You forcefully took that from our ancestors and at the very least you owe us that.
Today our reality is being conditioned by a man, among other unfavorable things, and his congressional allies who clearly have something significant they want to hide and avoid the consequences of. So much so that they planned/plan to use the power of congress and the DOJ to help in that endeavor. A man who has lied so much that no doubt his own wife and ex-wives have and had to fact check him on everything he says. So do you really think a kumbaya approach is the one we should be taking? Make no mistake about it these chickens will return home and when they do where will that leave us (Afro Americans)?
Pray for the best but prepare for the worst. Identify and follow your interests above anything and anyone especially those with conflicting interests and loyalties.
Interests over parties and personalities,
Walter Mitchell Jr.