A friend of mine said something yesterday that snapped my head back a little. She reminded me that white/straight/male supremacy has been the rule, not the exception, for most of American history. It’s the past eight years that have been the Great American Anomaly. To paraphrase Chris Rock, recent history wasn’t about minorities being different; we’ve just had the least oppressive leadership.
Now the oppressors are back.
If you look back, the entire history of the United States is one of white supremacy. White MALE supremacy. Think about how much time and effort has gone into trying to keep women and people of color and LGBTQ people from getting rights. How much blood and treasure went into preventing a little black girl from walking into a white school in Kansas? How many women were beaten and jailed trying to cast a ballot in an election before 1920? How hard did establishment politics work to suppress AIDS research that would have saved gay lives in the 80s? How many Native Americans lost their land, their language, their religion, their lives to the blind ambition of white colonialists?
There has been no cause more dear to the establishment than keeping white men in charge. To say Trump and his White House full of neo-con circus freaks is a deviation from 240 years of white guys wanting to control every damn thing is just laughable. The white nationalists are the American Empire. They are striking back.
Now, here’s the truth that the white voters and power brokers deliberately choose to ignore: white people alone cannot fix our problems. We need broad coalitions of people representing different experiences and viewpoints. For eight years, we have had those diverse coalitions speaking truth to power and the changes have been remarkable. But the changes have been intangible to the old guard. They don’t benefit from marriage equality. They were not the uninsured so they aren’t grateful for access to health care. White lives already mattered. They didn’t feel the progress so they don’t believe in the progress. They want rewards that mean something to them and now they think they’re going to get them.
This new cohort of wealthy white guys is no different than any other cohort of wealthy white guys, They’re just angrier because they had to wait for eight years for a Black man to finish being Commander in Chief before they could take over again. Sure, it may not be the overt goose stepping of WWII, but make no mistake. Wresting back control of the government from the women and minority groups that have had once-in-a-generation access is TOPS in this administration’s mind. They’ll call it populism but it’s white nationalism, plain and simple.
We’re in for four years of open-carry style hate. They’re going to put their bullshit on display, like angry monkeys throwing feces to show their dominance. They’re the same old monkeys and it’s the same old shit. Now we can just see it plain as day because they don’t feel obligated to conceal it.
So remember this, my friends, none of this is new. None of this is something we haven’t fought against before.
The broad coalitions of diverse voices who will speak truth to power still exist. Now is the time to organize and prepare to shout from the rooftops. Get fired up. Get ready to go. As we’ve long said in the pro-choice movement, we will not go back.