Kamala Harris At NAACP Will Shove Your 'Electability' Up Bill Barr's Ass
Kamala Harris delivered the keynote address Sunday at the NAACP 64th annual Fight for Freedom Fund dinner in Detroit, Michigan. Rev. Wendell Anthony, president of the Detroit NAACP, introduced Harris as a "bad sister who is on time." When you're called to the pulpit like that, you better come correct and Harris did not disappoint. "Let's speak the truth" is a common refrain from her campaign speeches, and Harris invoked it when dragging Bill Barr, who hasn't spoken many truths recently.
HARRIS: This is a moment in time where we need to speak truth. Take for example, the United States attorney general who lied to Congress and lied to you, and is clearly more interested in representing the president than the American people. We need leaders who have the courage to speak truth.
Harris spanked Barr before the Senate Judiciary Committee and his mother on Wednesday. She's called for his resignation after getting him to admit to both incompetence and corruption. We like when Harris reminds everyone that she's a badass prosecutor. But some hippies out there don't like the fuzz. She pointed out that her "tough-on-crime" reputation doesn't mean she hates black people because, you know, we're not all criminals. We're often the victims of crimes ourselves. It's good to have an advocate in our corner.
HARRIS: Knowing that the criminal justice system is extremely broken and is in desperate need of reform, we must push for change not only from the outside, but also from the inside and at the table where the decisions are made.
This isn't empty rhetoric. She's calling for true police reform, including increased investigations into law enforcement practices. She will also end the cash bail system that disproportionately screws the poor and minorities.
The California senator isn't your candidate if you want someone who'll compliment Mike Pence or Dick Cheney. Harris doesn't long for a return to the mythical past of bipartisanship civility (not coincidentally, that was a time when no one like Harris served in the Senate). She gets that Republicans collectively ain't shit. It's not just a minor Trump-related blip. It is Republicans plural who are trying to suppress black people's voting rights. She declared without hesitation that voter suppression is why Stacey Abrams and Andrew Gillum lost their respective governor's races. It wasn't just that they scared white people. Harris called for a "new Voting Rights Act," ideally one John Roberts proof. She proposes automatically registering voters and making Election Day a national holiday.
She does rightly single out Donald Trump as leader of the "Make America Hate Again" movement. Harris radically suggests that America is best served without a president who calls non-white countries "shitholes," gets the feels for Nazis, and literally rips apart families.
Harris also addressed the frankly annoying concerns about her "electability." The majority of white people voted for a former reality TV star, but can at least 40 percent of them get behind an exceptionally qualified former attorney general and US senator who carries both the curse of Ham and Eve? Perhaps that's asking too much of people who totally aren't racist or sexist.
HARRIS: There has been a conversation by pundits about "electability" and "who can speak to the Midwest?" But when they say that, they usually put the Midwest in a simplistic box and a narrow narrative. And too often their definition of the Midwest leaves people out. It leaves out people in this room, who helped build cities like Detroit.
Mark Goodman of MTV once claimed that Prince would "scare" viewers in the Midwest. Prince himself was literally from the Midwest. As Harris points out, there's a pervasive habit of excluding black people from any definition of the "heartland" or "real America." Black people apparently all live in urban Blackghanistan. Harris can motivate voters across the country and inspire the turnout necessary to retire Trump to Rikers.
Polls show Democrats prioritize electability in their 2020 nominee. They also define electability as possession of a white penis, no matter how rickety and ancient. We already have a political party that enables white supremacy and the patriarchy. Democrats never win when they try to out-Republican the GOP. Unfortunately, even some former members of the Obama coalition have let Trump break their spirits.
Joe Biden's penis is definitely whiter than the one Harris doesn't have. Look, vote for the candidate you believe shares your "ideals, your hopes, your dreams" ... sorry, we were channeling Matt Santos for a moment. Don't vote for someone just because you think people who hate you will find them less objectionable. Harris has some truth to speak to this defeatist argument.
HARRIS: Voters deserve better. As a party, we can't let ourselves be drawn into thinking in those boxes or falling into those assumptions. We cannot get dragged into simplistic narratives or yesterday's politics.
Damn right. We couldn't agree more with our favorite "bad sister."
NAACP Fight For Freedom Fund Dinner: Kamala Harris Full Speech www.youtube.com
Now go buy some Kamala swag.
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Stephen Robinson is a writer and social kibbitzer based in Seattle. However, he's more reliable for food and drink recommendations in Portland, where he spends a lot of time for theatre work. His co-adaptation of "Jitterbug Perfume" by Tom Robbins is playing NOW at Pioneer Square's Cafe Nordo. All Wonketters welcome.