That ominous feeling we all had when Trump began to gain momentum in the primaries, has gone from just a feeling, to a palpable reality. The “polls” the “experts” will try to act as if they were shocked by the results, but we know better. We heard Trayvon plead for his life… We saw Mike Brown’s lifeless body left for hours in the August heat… We witnessed Eric Garner’s last breath… We watched our sister Sandra Bland get tossed like a rag doll. But We never saw justice.
But things have changed right? We had a black president; for two terms at that.True. But race relations in America are as bad as they have been since Dr. King’s assassination. It seems like Obama was able to do some great things for America, but not for Us. He bailed-out Wall Street, brought our troops home, shook Castro’s hand, lower the unemployment rate and killed Bin Laden. Okay, cool. But how has that changed anything for Us? We still exist under the thumb of racism and prejudice in this country.
Something that continued to annoy me during the election, was the birth of a new demographic in America, known as “non college educated white men.” They are the ones to blame for the sophisticated, systematic, school to prison pipeline and ambushing the ballots in Trumps favor? Give me a break. The very educated, wealthy and powerful have always been responsible for the outcome of elections in this country. Poor white folks never owned slaves, they never had any real power. Don’t blame them for Trump’s ascent to the presidency.
There are some very wealthy, sophisticated and well educated folks who wanted Trump to win. They may pretend to not like his approach or rhetoric, but fundamentally, their elbows are locked with his. And secretly they voted for him. The Klan used to wear white sheets to hide their identity. They have traded their sheets for the ballot box. Old trick new method… that’s all.
I’ve played sports my entire life, but never shared a locker room with Donald Trump. I’ve had dinner at many tables, but not with Donald Trump. There’s obviously a deeper dialogue happening among white America. These are conversations that I will never be a part of. I cannot control that reality. I and millions of others in this country can only wait by the proverbial door, in hopes of hearing good news.
Election night had millions of us feeling like one of our loved ones were in critical condition. As time went on, the updates became less promising… Florida…brain dead, Michigan and Wisconsin…kidney failure…North Carolina…liver failure…Pennsylvania….lungs collapse. .. Ohio… the heart stopped beating… flat line. “Sorry,” the media said, “She didn’t make it.” A hush of silence rushed across the country. Some were in utter disbelief. While others were satisfied, but did not want to reveal their true beliefs.
More than ever, America exists in two realities… One man’s progress, is at the expense of another man’s plight. This is Donald Trump’s America. This is the Make America Great Again that he speaks of. This is democracy? A bitter pill it is. This is what makes America great huh?
“America, America, God shed hid grace on thee,
And crown thy good, with brotherhood,
From sea to shining sea”
As a little black boy raised in America, I had to learn the lyrics of America the Beautiful for our school’s end of the year musical performance. I was the only black boy in my kindergarten class and I was chosen to sing the solo. Years later I can only laugh at the irony. I did not know any better. The words are sketched in my mind for ever. I just sang it, because I loved the melody and I loved to sing. And now look at how our country has voted….God’s grace might be shedding on thee, but it damn sure ain’t shedding on me.