TThe silence has been deafening on the right. From right-wing evangelicals who had prayed for Donald Trump to be re-elected, to the All Lives Matter and Blue Lives Matter crowds, to those who hate Kaepernick and to those who denigrated Black Lives Matter as violent bullies. In the wake of a mob of Trump supporters that invaded the United States Capitol in a coup attempt on Wednesday, the same people who were quick to condemn the peaceful protests against racism are either silent or ridiculously blaming the scenes on Antifa.
The events in Washington DC really shouldn’t have been a surprise to anyone. Trump had been promoting the ‘Stop the Steal’ rally that led to the Capitol invasion nonstop on Twitter as if it were an upcoming pay-per-view fight, promising his followers, “I’ll be there. Historic day! “It commercialized it. It encouraged it.
And yet the reaction from much of central America was shock that white supremacists could invade the heart of American democracy largely undisturbed, pacing the Capitol as if it were their own private kingdom.
But none of this came as a surprise to NBA players, 80% of whom are black and see the effects of white supremacy every day. Not the violence on Capitol Hill, not Trump’s election in the first place, not his depicting large parts of Africa with an obscenityNot the police murders of George Floyd or Breonna Taylor, not the acquittal of the officers who shot Jacob Blake. In fact, one of the few white people who wasn’t surprised was Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr, who has spent most of his career with black people. “A legitimate election is suddenly challenged by millions of people, including many of the people who run our country in government, because we have decided, in recent years, to allow lies to be told,” he said Wednesday night. . “So this is who we are. You reap what you sow.”
Later, Boston Celtics guard Jaylen Brown explained, as if he still needed an explanation, how blacks live with white supremacy every day.
“It reminds me of what Dr. Martin Luther King said, that there are two different Americas divided. In the United States, they kill you sleeping in your car, selling cigarettes or playing in your backyard, ”he said. “And then, in another America, you can storm the Capitol without tear gas, without mass arrests, nothing like that. So, I think it’s obvious: we are in 2021, I don’t think anything has changed. We still want to acknowledge that. We want to continue promoting the change we are looking for. But so far we haven’t seen it. We want to keep the conversations alive and do our part. “
Jaylen is absolutely right. We have observed time and again that the mainstream in the United States justifies police shooting after police shooting. Terence Crutcher in Oklahoma; Tamir Rice, 12, in Cleveland; Eric Garner in New York; Philando Castile and George Floyd in Minnesota; Breonna Taylor in Kentucky; Jacob Blake in Wisconsin. The long and heartbreaking list goes on and on.
Like us discussed On my show, The Collision, the police choose to use restraint and de-escalation techniques with white people, as we saw on Capitol Hill Wednesday, rather than the shoot first, ask questions, then approach when it comes to men, women or black blacks. children. We all watched as they allowed the white domestic terrorists who had just stormed the Capitol to just walk away like they were on a school field trip. There was an image of a white lady literally being helped down the stairs by a police officer. They were handled with such care, unlike the tear gas and rubber bullets that greeted Black Lives Matter protesters this summer. As Deadspin reporter Chuck Modiano, who was on the floor in the Capitol, told me: “I was fine, when will the tear gas come? Because I’ve been covering the protests in DC for seven months quite religiously, and the amount of provocations to Get Tear Gas is as little as a bottle of water. This is what I’m used to, this is what black people in DC have been dealing with. My mind was so blown away by the inaction of the police because this was so easy to prevent. “
Anyone still having trouble recognizing white privilege after what we saw this week simply denies it. African American NBA players know it, they have witnessed it their entire lives. And they are using their fame to get the message home in America and around the world, in the hope that something will change. That’s why the Milwaukee Bucks and Detroit Pistons players knelt at the start of their game Wednesday night. That’s why Colin Kaepernick got down on his knees in the first place.
After the Golden State game on Wednesday, Draymond Green addressed the media.
“Stop describing [the Capitol invaders] in the same way that you describe someone who stands there and sings saying ‘we want justice, we want peace,’ ”he said. “Stop using the same word, it is disrespectful and it is shameful to keep calling you protesters … you are terrorists”
Draymond is absolutely right. No one is demanding that the police shoot white Trump supporters like us. We demand that the police no shoot us like them no shoot them. It is not much to ask. Ask our next president.
George is Digismak’s reported cum editor with 13 years of experience in Journalism