GOP Floods Black Facebook With Absolute Sh*t
Exit polls — for what they are worth this year, which is extremely little indeed — claim that Donald Trump performed better among Black male voters than he did in 2016. Black men still voted overwhelmingly against him, but races are won on the margins, so even a few points improvement can make a difference. In 2016, he tried to keep Black voters at home by convincing them that Hillary Clinton was racist, unlike President Klan Robe, who loves all the Black teens he tries to have executed.
He was up to his old tricks again this year, thanks to social media, everyone's favorite purveyor of misinformation. Republican Joe Collins, who tried to come for Rep. Maxine Waters when she didn't call him, was one of many from the Right and "the Left" (not the Left) to tweet a misleading video of Biden going full-blown Archie Bunker.
Well where was the dignity and respect of Black Americans or in your words @JoeBiden "Niggers" when you made this s… https://t.co/lNj2g9GPiA— Joe E. Collins III (@Joe E. Collins III) 1593463764.0
Wow! Biden sounds so racist he could work in the Trump administration.
This “n-word" dance remix of Biden repeating a vile racial epithet was grossly taken out of context. As Snopes explains, this was some raw bullshit. Back in 1985, Ronald Reagan had nominated William Bradford Reynolds, the assistant US attorney for Civil Rights (LOL), for promotion to associate attorney general.
From the Chicago Tribune:
[Biden] questioned Reynolds about his handling of Louisiana`s congressional redistricting, where the state legislature initially had approved a plan that created a predominantly black district in New Orleans. But because of opposition from former Gov. David Treen and white legislators, the plan was replaced by one that split the black district and preserved the seat of a GOP congressman.
Biden pointed out that Reynolds was aware of complaints voiced by a key state legislator, whom the senator quoted as saying ''we already have a [n-word] mayor (in New Orleans); we don`t need another [n-word] big shot.''
This is an official proceeding (and also 1985) so no one would've thought to use the “n-word" euphemism, which didn't yet exist. (I think that's another thing we owe the O.J. Simpson trial.) Biden himself isn't dropping the “n-word" like a presumptuous white character in a Quentin Tarantino film.
Trump's own professional liar, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, couldn't even confirm that her boss had never used the “n-word" publicly and not just when discussing Huck Finn at book club. Collins seems like the sort of knee-jerk, know-nothing conservative who'd call kids a snowflake for complaining that a teacher used the actual racial epithet when teaching Huck Finn to their class.
Unfortunately, Black kids were targeted with this misleading clip across social media. Young people with any sense of pride don't appreciate old white guys slinging the n-word in their direction. Sure, Trump called NFL players who peacefully protested police violence “sons of bitches," but he didn't use the n-word! Although, he probably wished he could. That's why his complexion is that weird shade, he's holding in a stream of n-words.
Collins is a terrible person for sharing the video. I'm glad he lost his House race, and I hope his friends no longer speak to him. Social media should've never given these gross lies a platform, but Facebook in particular is only concerned about increasing its user engagement. It doesn't care if it helps destroy civilization. During the days leading up to the presidential election, Black and Latino voters were flooded with disinformation on Facebook groups.
Murphy Bannerman first noticed the posts this summer in a Facebook group called Being Black in Arizona.
Someone started posting memes full of false claims that seemed designed to discourage people from voting.
The memes were "trying to push this narrative of, 'The system is a mess and there's no point in you participating,' " Bannerman said. She recalled statements such as, " 'Democrats and Republicans are the same. There's no point in voting.' 'Obama didn't do anything for you during his term, why should you vote for a Democrat this time around?'"
Bannerman is deputy director of Election Protection Arizona, a nonpartisan group that helps people vote, so she was on the alert for these suppression tactics. You'll notice that most are familiar conservative talking points intended to keep Black folks on the couch on Election Day. It's why I push back so hard whenever I hear young Black kids express these sentiments. It's not hipster cynicism. It's indoctrination. And Russia promulgated these same lies in 2016.
Voting Republicans out of office, up and down the ballot, makes a big difference. In Georgia Tuesday, voters delivered some early justice for Ahmaud Arbery and voted out Jackie Johnson, the Brunswick district attorney who blew off his murder. This is the power of the ballot. We won't let Republican lies steal it from us.
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Stephen Robinson is a writer and social kibbitzer based in Portland, Oregon. He writes make believe for Cafe Nordo, an immersive theatre space in Seattle. Once, he wrote a novel called “Mahogany Slade,” which you should read or at least buy. He's also on the board of the Portland Playhouse theatre. His son describes him as a “play typer guy."