Bill Vs. BLM
Why Bill Clinton’s Black Lives Matter Protest Response is Problematic.
Written By: Dashh Lee
Bill Clinton had an encounter with Black Lives Matter Protestors on Thursday as he was out campaigning on his wife’s behalf, that as expected, went awry. Majority of politicians do not have an idea as to where to start when interrupted by a BLM protestor. They tend to spill first, and then clean up the mess later – the mess being their typically inherent underlying racism.
When Bill was interrupted he responded with a visceral assertion and classic politician rhetoric about why the protestor was wrong and his legislation was essentially the greatest thing for black people because it kept the “bad guys” out of our neighborhoods so we could therefore thrive – and if these protestors really cared about black lives the way they claim to, then they would know that. The problem here is, they do really care, and they know exactly why this piece of legislation was so harmful. Unlike Bill, some of these protestors experienced first hand the negative and destructively harmful effects that this legislation has had on the black community. What Bill failed to realize is that these are educated and awake black people. They are not out at a protest quietly accepting the pandering that he and other politicians alike are so desperately pushing.
Black Lives Matter protestors are actively challenging politicians because they are trying to make effective changes in the black community. Holding politicians accountable for creating and implementing harmful legislation is a huge part of what they do. At one point Bill says “I don’t know how you would characterize the gang leaders who got 13-year-old kids hopped up on crack and sent them out onto the street to murder other African-American children” – here is where you can sense the inherent cup of racism starting to overflow and seep out. Those gang leaders are where they are large in part to dangerous and awful legislation that has negatively impacted their communities.
Systemic racism is real. Systemic racism is a large reason there are gang-bangers and drug dealers all throughout the hood. Those kids did not start as gang leaders – they found themselves doing things they needed to in order to survive and provide for their families. The black community has been railroaded by systemic racism for years. Systemic racism is the redlining that occurred in the real estate market, barring Blacks from owning homes. Systemic racism is the schools in their neighborhoods being less than average and filled with mediocre support for them. Systemic racism is policing and jailing innocent blacks, then ruining their lives because they’ve now entered into the American prison system and have officers harassing and stalking them – just waiting around, looking for reasons to arrest them again. It’s taking fathers out of communities and leaving the women to raise men on their own (there are a lot of people who will attempt to invalidate this statement by claiming that black men leave on their own, which while it may very well be true [sometimes] – that argument is lacking further insight into the historical context and background on the absence of black fathers in families).
Now back to Bill –in his statement he demonizes these men, whom we already know he and his wife think of as “super predators” based on some things that cannot be changed, due to the quality of the environment that these kids were raised in. Bill was very fortunate during his life, not only because he didn’t grow up in these kinds of neighborhoods, but also because he is white and blatantly reaping the benefits of white privilege.
Part of his white privilege blindness is he truly believes that he did so much to help African Americans. His 1994 crime bill was abhorrently destructive to the black community, and yet he talks about poverty in the black community and how “we had the largest drop in African American poverty in history when he was president”. There’s just one thing he conveniently forgot – when the US Census is done people who are in jail are not tallied. Why is this important? Back in February, Michelle Alexander wrote an article for The Nation, titled Why Hillary Clinton Doesn’t Deserve the Black Vote” – pretty bold statement, I know, but wildly accurate. The article highlights the US Census leaving out a large population, from its total calculation, by not tallying the incarcerated populous. So while on the surface it may have appeared that there is a large drop in African American poverty, in reality, most of the people tallied, who were then in prison, were automatically added to the drop, and by default, made the poverty census appear lower. There was no real drop though, just an enormous amount of black men being jailed. There’s no doubt in Bill’s mind of this all occurring due to his 1994 crime bill – with him even admitting in July, 2015 that he made mass incarceration worse.
So, this man standing up on that stage telling these protestors that he was such a saint and helper to the black community is farce. His inherent racism is the reason that he truly believes he helped the black community, when in reality, he was just acting as the modern day white colonial man, trying to help the poor savages live a better life
Oh, and the best part – he’s not even sorry.
So, did Bill Clinton just cause Hillary to lose the Black Vote?