Struggles for Justice congratulate Donald J. Trump, President elect of the United States and the 45th President. Our democracy yet again has restored itself. It works. The election was fair, free and democratic for the most part.
To the extent that Trump delivers on truly bringing the nation together as one people as he promised last night to the American people, we support him fully, and he is our President. It is how the system works. We must support it and Trump to be a successful president.
Yet, any thinking and compassionate person must experience a great cognitive dissonance trying to square Trump’s behavior and rhetoric with American ideals of democracy, equality and justice for all; for the Constitution, and rule of law.
The 2016 election represents a huge white backlash at perceived threats to white supremacy. It is a falsehood to think it was all about working class Americans. Few working class Americans of color or ethnic or religious minorities voted for him or Republicans down the ballot. This idea of White Americans making an economic movement is a cover for bigotry fueled by fear and hatred of the “other.”
White privilege is really a euphemism for white supremacy. It remains a supremacy of power, wealth, and position that denies an equal share or equal treatment under the law to the non-white, immigrant, or religious minority to the rest of America.
A study of Trump voters found them to be older, white and earning an average of $72,000 per year; a figure above the median income for all Americans. White people are simply not at all comfortable seeing any sort of new racial, ethnic, or gender progress. What happened during Reconstruction from 1865 to 1877 represented huge progress as African-Americans were freed from slavery, and grasped that freedom nobly and with courage.
White backlash to racial progress is a common theme in American history. The assertion of white power and identity over other people is expressed in clear discriminatory practices.
All during Reconstruction the white majority North and South resisted the revolution in human rights represented by the 13th 14th and 15th Amendments to the Constitution. Whites terrorized the Southern black population via lynching, rape and killing on a huge scale over the entire period to restore or “redeem” white supremacy. Over the decades that followed, what is called the Nadir of American race relations was reached with the deepening appearance of Jim Crow segregation and discrimination.
The 1950’s and 1960’s ushered in another era of racial progress with Dr. Martin Luther King’s leadership of the modern Civil Rights Movement, and Johnson’s push for the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965, and the Fair Housing Act of 1968. The nation’s racial conflicts, and culture wars have been played out in the time since. Liberals have had the upper hand being on the right side of the arc of history as it bent toward justice.
Now the white majority has halted this progressive tendency with Trump’s election to the presidency and a fully Republican Congress and Conservative Supreme Court. It is their right, yet it does not make it right and just.
Bluntly, and in contradiction of the continuing white denial of their strong race prejudice and xenophobia, Struggles for Justice proclaims loud and strong that we remain a racist nation. We remain a nation prone to venal xenophobia, and gender discrimination. White Republican men have always rejected the feminism of women asserting their own rights to be full American citizens, and having the right to control their own bodies free from the dictates of what men tell them they must accept.
This revolutionary election has wrought fear and hatred of non-white and non-Christian people. America still remains in a state of denial about the deeply embedded racism and ethnic and religious prejudice that controls how white people relate to all other minorities in the United States.
Trump employed fear and hate. It has and will fuel much violence and discrimination of people of color and those who are minorities in every sense in the years to come.
We can congratulate the victors. We can accept under the rule of law and our Constitution this result however joyous, or disheartening it is for us.
But we should never for a moment give our acceptance of that fear and hate. Tolerance and compassion includes the refusal of our souls to give in to our fears and then hate our supposed enemies. We can and must stand against fear and hate however it manifests itself.
If Trump essentially reunites white America at the expense of colored and ethnic and religious minorities he will have betrayed basic human kindness and compassion. He will have mocked the entire promise of the nation embodied in the Old Declaration that “all men are created equal.”
Struggles for Justice rejects Trumpism’s call to racial bigotry and ethnic and religious hatreds. And it is at the core of what the movement is.
In some way all the major faiths of the world proclaim that God is love, not hate. The Creator Spirit; an omnipotent higher power knows the very hearts of Trump and his followers. She knows our own. She will not be mocked.
So let us stand for all our brothers and sisters. Let us stand with them. Let us break bread and drink with them. Let us listen to their cries for justice and share our own so the troubles of our hearts may be shared.
God is love. We are commanded in any ethical system to love our neighbors as ourselves. A civilized people are able to compassionately do the public good. Alright President Trump, you have your chance to unite us and show us justice so that we may walk humbly with our God and not fear those who hate us. If you do not, we will oppose you with all our might and with all our soul, with the sure knowledge that we do so for the right. We are guided by our ability to see the right as God grants us to see it.
We look out at a white racist, xenophobe and homophobe majority. We seek that justice for the poor and the oppressed; the least of these. We will never give up or relent in our insistence on human justice and equality. It is time to protest and to move the issues of humanity and equality before God. You have been warned.