During the Cohen hearing, we had a bizarre moment. Michael Cohen accused President Donald Trump of being racist. This came as no surprise to most observers. We have seen plenty of racism from the White House. He was endorsed by people like David Duke who is a well known white supremacist.
So Representative Mark Meadows decided to bring a HUD employee, and friend of the family, as a prop. Suffice it to say she was black. HUD Secretary Ben Carson is also black. Quite honestly I was surprised Meadows did not raise that point as well.
Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib raised the issue during the hearing. She accused Meadows of racism. I will take Meadows at his word that he is not. At the very least he is not aware of it. What he did was classic tokenism, in this case, Trump has a black friend. And he has family who are people of color.
The Congressman, like most white people, navigate a world where they are not aware of this. I was educated by many people. I can move in that world easily (until I open my mouth.) So I am intimately aware of those very uncomfortable situations when a person of color raises the point. “You may not be racist, but what you did is racist.”
Meadows got very angry, even red in the face.
I hope the Congressman, and many who watched that moment, learn from it. Moreover, Meadows called for then President Barack Obama, to return to Kenya in 2012. Yes, there is a video of this. Birtherism by its very nature is racist. It is time for white America to learn from these situations, and how they come across people of color. We are going to be a majority-minority nation by the 2040s. We need to acknowledge how these things cause unnecessary pain, and how they come across.
At the very least, Meadows should talk to his family who moves in a different space than he does. Hiring a few people of color and listening may help him as well.
Oh, and for those who believe this is a party issue, it’s not.