First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Socialist.
Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Jew.
Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.
When Jaundiced Jesus signed the executive order that restricted entry into the U.S. for citizens of seven countries, his acolytes immediately pounced in front of cameras with two parallel narratives:
- The executive order was not a Muslim ban.
- This was necessary for national security.
Donald Trump’s all-star alternative-facts team’s efforts to convince the world that his actions had nothing to do with religion rang as true as a man in a white robe and pointed hood telling you that he just likes setting crosses on fire; it has nothing to do with race. They said it with poker-faced sincerity, as if the world had completely forgotten the memories of them chiding then-President Barack Obama for eight years for not saying the words “radical Islamic terrorism.”
They insisted on their righteous intent even though the text of the executive order explicitly spells out that non-Muslims from these countries would still be allowed entry. Even after former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani paraded around on national TV boasting about the fact that Trump asked him to figure out a way to institute a “Muslim ban,” they tried to convince us of their altruistic intentions. The national press didn’t have a secret meeting and decide on that name. The words “Muslim ban” came directly from the Trump administration.
This has nothing to do with national security. The number of terrorist attacks carried out by immigrants or refugees from these countries is zero. Nada. Zilch.
This is not just useless information. This is important for black people.
Despite your personal opinion of the the tiny-fingered Twitter troll, no one can deny that he is doing exactly what he said he would do—Constitution, political tradition and protocol be damned (which is why I now know he definitely grabbed someone by the … ). He is giving the people who crowded into arenas and airplane hangars to wave Confederate flags and sucker-punch black protesters everything he promised.
Aside from people who just happen to love red hats and the Times New Roman font, we know who the base of Trump’s voters are. It is not fair to paint them all as racist, but they are at least racist adjacent. They might not do or say anything explicitly racist, but if the person next to them did, they wouldn’t protest. This is why they could hear his dog-whistle white supremacy overtones and vote for him anyway.
Here is why black people should take notice. Donald Trump campaigned on four premises:
1. He would build a wall. Everyone knew that this was an incredibly insane idea that could never happen. It would cost too much, and it really wouldn’t keep immigrants from crossing the border. All you need to conquer a 10-foot wall is an 11-foot ladder. It was a stupid pipe dream that he just fed his supporters.
2. He would get rid of the undocumented immigrants. The media and political experts knew that this would never happen. There was no way to round up the millions of people living in the U.S. without citizenship. It would break up families and there weren’t enough agents to do it.
Trump added 10,000 immigration agents to round up and deport aliens.
3. He would ban Muslims. This was a nonstarter. It was unconstitutional and against all American values, and there was no way to do it.
He banned Muslims.
4. He would bring “law and order” to the inner cities.
Guess who’s next.
When you look up “inner city” in the Wypipo Book of Dog-Whistle Words and Phrases, there is just one definition:
Trump’s heavy-handed, callous approach is coming to a neighborhood near you, and if his previous actions offer any insight, whatever he does won’t be particularly sensitive or useful.
When you connect the dots, you begin to see the picture. The Muslim-ban executive order, the executive order to build the wall and even Trump’s “America First” inauguration speech were crafted by two men. The first was Steve Bannon, Trump’s chief strategist. I’m sure you’ve heard of him because he headed what he referred to as the “platform of the alt-right.” He calls himself a “nationalist” and an “America-first guy.”
But the second guy is more important. The second guy is Stephen Miller. Even Republicans are afraid of Miller and openly call him a white nationalist. He has campaigned against diversity and multiculturalism since college—even railing against the “leftist, racial paranoia of one of the school’s invited speakers: Maya Angelou. When he was in college, Miller worked closely with a man who would also tie him to Bannon and Trump: Richard Spencer.
Spencer says that he “mentored” Miller in college when they worked together to bring white nationalist speakers to Duke University. Spencer created the term “alt-right” to bring white nationalism into mainstream respectability. The Southern Poverty Law Center, which lists and watches hate groups across the world, says, “Spencer advocates for an Aryan homeland for the supposedly dispossessed white race and calls for ‘peaceful ethnic cleansing’ to halt the ‘deconstruction’ of European culture.”
This is why this Muslim ban is important for black people.
Why would anyone put up this much of a fight in the name of national security to ban such a small number of people who have never committed an act of terrorism?
Why would the party that harps on fiscal responsibility and government spending throw $27 billion at a wall that wouldn’t keep anyone out, in the name of “border security”?
Why would we chase undocumented immigrants when they cost the country less than we would spend to round up and deport them?
Look up the definition of “ethnic cleansing”:
Ethnic Cleansing is the deliberate and systematic removal of a racial, political, or cultural group from a specific geographical area. A 1993 United Nations Commission defined it more specifically as, “the planned deliberate removal from a specific territory, persons of a particular ethnic group, by force or intimidation, in order to render that area ethnically homogenous.”
This is what “Make America great again” means. This is why the “inner cities” are next. This is why black people can’t ignore the Muslim ban.
First they came for the Mexicans.
Then they came for the Muslims.
What are you going to to when they come for you?