We cannot afford to be silent

Joe Biden is right: We cannot afford to be silent on race. The race issue in this country is no longer the “elephant in the room,” it has taken over the room. Because we have no real president in the White House, it is up to us to put a stop to this madness. Many are expressing outrage through protest, though they are being infiltrated by people who want to cause trouble, people who have no thought of anyone but themselves. Sound familiar? It should because that is exactly who “president” Donald Trump is, and he does absolutely nothing to hide it.

As soon as the protesting in Minneapolis took an ugly turn, Trump reached into his racist handbook to say things on Twitter that no president of the United States should ever say. He called the protesters “thugs” and threatened people with “when the looting starts, the shooting starts.” Not surprisingly, this borrowed threat came from Walter Headley, the Miami police chief who warned of violence against black protesters in 1967. As soon as everyone began criticizing Trump for encouraging violence, he claimed “the haters” “misinterpreted” his tweet. What is there to misinterpret? Trump further said that “the haters” are “looking to cause trouble on social media.” His point is what? Trump does that every day of the week, several times a day, which is why Twitter flagged his ignorant comment. Joe Biden, when asked by Don Lemon about Trump’s comments, responded: “I think he is thoroughly irresponsible.” Do we really expect any more from Trump? He has never been equipped to handle a crisis.

Biden, on the other hand, knows how to handle volatile situations. He immediately made a call to George Floyd’s family. Though Biden refused to share details with Lemon out of respect for the family’s privacy, he has been extremely vocal on the problems being caused by the alleged “president” of the United States and his complete inability to lead. Biden goes one step further, however, in addressing racial problems in a country where they should no longer exist. As Biden so eloquently stated, “The original sin of our country still stains our nation today.”

Biden made a valid point: “We’re a country with an open wound” and that now is “no time for incendiary tweets. It’s no time to encourage violence.” Trump can deny all he wants, but his tweets are clear. Trump has been a racist since he denied tenancy to blacks in New York, and nothing has changed today. Trump’s supporters — from the KKK to rogue cops — are part of the problem.

It is going to take much work to get us back on track after Trump is gone. We will not be able to heal until the very person who incites violence, condones and participates in racism, and stokes the fires of his base with hate is history. Many of those people will likely never learn not to hate — it was already in them before Trump took center stage — but we can and will overpower them. They always have the option to leave if they are not happy here.

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