Editor's Note: This post was co-authored by Loyd Pettegrew.
There is nothing like the death of an innocent black man to undo the laws on social distancing!
With the tragic death of George Floyd in Minneapolis on May 25th, Democrats are once again accusing and labeling the whole of American society as racist. On Friday, May 29th, Joe Biden, in a virtual conference, channeling the New York Times’ much-maligned 1619 Project, claimed that America’s “original sin” was continuing to “stain” the fabric of American life. But as Allen C. Guelzo opined in the Wall Street Journal, “The 1619 Project can wave its Pulitzer as credibility insurance, but credibility isn’t the same as truth. Pulitzers have been handed out before—to the Times’s Walter Duranty and the Washington Post’s Janet Cooke—only to collapse under the weight of falsehood.”
As major cities like Minneapolis, Detroit, Portland, Los Angeles, Memphis, Chicago, Atlanta, Washington, D.C., New York, Denver, Albuquerque, Houston, Oakland, St. Louis were besieged by violent protestors, the usual race-baiters urged them on. Both Reverends Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson traveled to Minneapolis Thursday to call for action. Sharpton responded to media inquiries saying, "They should tell those four police what they tell all the people in the 'hood: ‘Tell it to the judge.’” Well Al, they already have!
A rejuvenated Biden demonstrated that he was still capable of reading from a teleprompter and exhibiting an appropriate degree of performative energy and concern. Sensing that the Minneapolis incident was heaven-sent to foster his repentance from his recent gaffs on race, Biden went full throttle to frame the death of Floyd as ”indisputable evidence” of an America still harboring a flawed racial psychosis in its national DNA. History shows that this truth is as representative of blacks as it is whites. Biden’s rhetoric was filled with energy and animation as he spoke of the “deep open wound” in our nation, and that this was a time of “national crisis” requiring real leadership (presumably his) to resolve.
Biden was not the only Democrat seizing the moment to promote this problematic racial flaw that continues to make America a sick place for African Americans to live. On Thursday evening, May 28th, Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey, also channeling the 1619 Project playbook, lamenting that the pain the city was experiencing was the result of the “building anger and sadness that has been ingrained in our society for four hundred years.” Standing before the press he proclaimed, “If you are feeling that sadness and anger, it is not only understandable, it is right.” Mayor Frey explained that racism was a “truth” with which the black community has lived, and that reality must be understood by the non-black community. At no time did either the mayor or Biden critique the overarching fact that black American are largely stuck in single parent households with children who are too frequently raised by grandmothers. Or that black on black crime exists in epidemic proportions, far greater than white on black crime. By pressing such condemnation of white American people, the Democrat hoped to lock in Black voters for the 2020 election while ignoring the failed liberal Democrat policies.
But hold on for a moment. The incident between George Floyd and four Minneapolis police officers is still under investigation. On the same day that Frey spoke to the press on the 28th, the U.S. Department of Justice said that its investigation into the death of Floyd is a top priority. Joint statements by the DOJ and FBI revealed that a cadre of experienced prosecutors and criminal investigators were being assigned to the matter. On the afternoon of May 29th fired police official Derek Chauvin was charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter. Despite the inflamed passions surrounding the care, hopefully the justice system will be above a predetermined guilty verdict.
As Robert L. Woodson has said, “Today the progressive left wants to ignore the achievements and pretend that blacks are perpetual victims of white racism…Instead of celebrating blacks’ achievements and the progress made toward delivering on America’s promissory note, the left will transport yesterday’s real injustices into today’s false social-justice narrative, ignoring the principles that were so crucial to Dr. King… During the civil-rights movement blacks never permitted oppression to define who we were. Instead we cultivated moral competence, enterprise and thrift, and viewed oppression as a stumbling block, not an excuse.”
The rush to judgment by Biden and Grey, and abetted by the mainstream media (MSM), should be very concerning to all American voters. Traditionally, America’s leaders have separated bad actors and ruthless dictators from the population as a whole.To place political ambition over good judgment and an abiding sense of fairness amounts to poor leadership. Taking a swipe at all white American citizens to promote a perceived political advantage with a particular segment of the voting electorate is anything but unifying. It is in fact reminiscent of Biden’s mentor, Barack Obama playbook during the Ferguson crisis--premature judgment in such cases can prove to be immensely wrong. Not surprisingly, Soros-funded Antifa, showed up at many of these riots to once again demonstrate that the allegedly anti-fascist group is in fact an exemplar of fascism as Angelo M. Codevilla points out in his essay, “The Original Fascist” in the Claremont Review of Books.
The East Indian parable of the three blind men and the elephant is instructive. In the fable one of the blind men grabs the elephant by the tail and concludes the elephant is like a rope. The next blind man takes the elephant by the leg and states the elephant is a tree. The third blind man grasps the elephant by the trunk and proclaims the elephant is a great snake. The story can be very instructive to all that hear it. It certainly offers valuable insight into a common human condition. Based upon incomplete information and united limited experience, too many human beings ascribe absolute truth to their own perceptions and information while totally dismissing the perceptions and information possessed by others.
The open racial wound identified by Joe Biden and his band of merry progressives could scab over and heal, but for the fact that Democrats continue to scratch and pick at it for their own political gain.
Jim McCoy if an Associate Professor Emeritus of Education at Southern Utah University and Loyd Pettegrew is a Professor Emeritus at the University of South Florida.