|Posted on September 26, 2017 at 1:20 PM|
When white American orators are able to articulate their opposition to the presidency of Donald J. Trump as well and as clearly as Shannon Sharpe has done, then I will believe that we have some chance at solving the problems in our country and in the world.
What Shannon Sharpe said last night, his emphasis on the critical question “What are we showing solidarity against?” is where white American orators needs to focus. Until this happens, until a white person with a media platform speaks the plain and honest truth the way Shannon Sharpe did, then we may as well all call ourselves the Dallas Cowboys - a team willing to bend a knee, but only if in doing so we don't ruffle too many feathers or get ourselves too dirty with the causes of people of color.
While I have consistently and daily felt and said the same things as Shannon Sharpe, I am a small voice. An independent author and freelance editor. I don't have a platform beyond my Twitter account and this blog. I get my news from Twitter, and have never heard a white person with a national media platform speak so plainly, so forcefully, or so adroitly as Shannon Sharpe spoke about the truth of Donald J. Trump. Perhaps it is my own willingness to avoid MSM broadcasts that I have not seen such speeches. But I suspect it’s something far more insidious that has left me wondering where the truth-tellers are.
Why do white Americans with media platforms not stand up and speak what we all know to be true? Is it because they fear reprisal? Do they fear retaliation or threats to life and limb by the wingnut contingent in this country?
I don't think so. I think it is becuase most white Americans with media platforms, like CBS Chairman Les Moonves, believe that Trump "may not be good for America, but [he's] damn good for [ratings]." Or maybe they think "that's how people of color speak out" because they're the ones suffering the inequities and injustices in this country.
In other words: "I'm not comfortable saying what I know to be true, because it doesn't feel like my fight. I'm not directly impacted by police officers murdering unarmed black men and women in the streets."
Why do you let your brother's or sister's pain be their problem alone? Why do you not stand side by side with them and lock arms, take the knee, and say "No more! No, I will not stand for or support this president and his meanness, his bellicose incompetence, his bullying." Why?
Because most white Americans with media platforms are comfortable where they are, and they don't want to be made uncomfortable.
So onward we go, in this cycle where men and women of color are shot down, and others stand up and speak the truth. And those of us who do not suffer such inequities and injustices, those of us who benefit from the taint of white privilege, sit back and watch the circus. We applaud Colin Kaepernick. We applaud Shannon Sharpe and Joy Reid and Charles Blow. We applaud them and countless other people of color who have managed to obtain a media platform in this country where success and whiteness have always been bedfellows, but any intimacy between success and color has always been seen as extraordinary. And we think that by clapping our hands we are raising them up.
That's bullshit, and white America knows it. Where are the orators, the media personalities, the celebrities and speakers who have the courage to be radical and say what we all know to be true?
Our country is being run into the ground by a madman high off his ass on egotism and narccisism. But that's a black thing, and we just wouldn't understand. Really? Fuck that. White America, get off the couch, get out there, and say what you know to be true. Say it loud, say it clear. If it is the truth, it cannot be disputed.
Categories: Behind the Stories