One Presidential candidate shamed a movement, another offered to serve the jail time of a religious martyr and a Governor praised stop-and-frisk.
The first full week of September was a busy and controversial one for many republican presidential candidates, many of whom, including Ms. Carly Fiorina, former CEO of Hewlett-Packard, on the 16th of this month will be on stage at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, California, for CNN’s Republican presidential debate.
With the ever egregious, highly entertaining Mr. Donald Trump at the center of the stage, the forum will undoubtedly be lively, but it, too, should be stringent and full of scrutiny, because a handful of the participants have recently engaged in or said things that should make many voters question their sanity and ability to lead a changing nation.
Mr. Trump, who according to CNN is the first Republican presidential candidate to top 30% support in the race for the 2016 Republican nomination, this week suggested that the Black Lives Matter movement was “looking for trouble” and promoting “hate.”
These comments came a day before Mr. Asa Khalif, arguably one of the most recognizable Black Lives Matter activists in Philadelphia—Mr. Khalif was the gentlemen last week shown in a clip on Fox News Sunday shouting down the Philadelphia Police Commissioner at his lecture—appeared, in a show of solidarity, at an all-white church who had come under fire for promoting on their marquee the three words made popular in the wake of unmitigated police shootings disproportionately impacting people of color.
For a man who admits he’s not even sure that Black Americans are treated differently by police—mainly because he hasn’t driven himself in so long that the nature of a traffic stop has become foreign—Mr. Trump, who this year said black youth lack “spirit,” is lesser than a novice on the issue of race and racism in America, and his comments inch him closer to being classified as a jester.
In additional to his snide remarks about a growing civil rights movement full of spirited, young black Americans and people of color, Mr. Trump—along with Ms. Sarah Palin and Mr. Ted Cruz, a Texas Senator and Republican presidential candidate—rallied on Capitol Hill in protest of the Iran nuclear deal, a win President Barack Obama obtained without a single Republican vote.
Also this week, Mr. Mike Huckabee, matching Mr. Trump’s absurdity, offered to take Mrs. Kim Davis’ place in jail, saying he would rather spend eight years in jail than “spend one day under the tyranny of people who believe they can take our freedom and conscience away.”
“I’m tired of watching people being just harassed because they believe something of their faith, and we cannot criminalize the Christian faith or anybody’s faith in this country,” Mr. Huckabee said, according CBS News.
It’s clear that Mr. Huckabee, who’ll be positioned four podiums to the left of Mr. Trump for the debate, doesn’t understand or care that Mrs. Davis, a Kentucky clerk and religious fanatic who refused to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, was jailed due to her contempt of court and for holding a public office hostage with her private beliefs. Mrs. Davis has since been released but ordered not to interfere with the work of her staff.
Mr. Ben Carson, the famed neurosurgeon who’ll be to the direct left to Mr. Trump during the debate, said the jailing of Mrs. Davis was predictable and called on Congress to enact a law that protects those who have objections to work rule changes based on their religious beliefs.
To the far right of Mr. Trump this Wednesday will be New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, who this week said if he was Mayor of New York City he would immediately re-institute stop-and-frisk, a controversial policy that a U.S. District Judge in 2013 labeled “unconstitutional.”
“Stop and frisk would be back in about five minutes. We would empower the police and not undercut them,” Gov. Christie told MSNBC’s Morning Joe.
The governor’s comments came a day before a plain-clothed NYPD officer violently arrested-–in a case of mistaken identity—Mr. James Blake, a famous biracial tennis player, prompting an apology from the police commissioner, who stripped the arresting officer of his gun and badge.
The incident underscored the common problem with the stop-(question)-frisk policy: police officers rarely ask questions before searching or arrest someone, particularly an African-American or persons of color.
The governor’s comments are tone deaf, as the policy is regarded by countless professionals and laymen as ineffective and racist.
This week, by several measures, was a fail for a number of republican presidential candidates.
Hopefully, on the campaign trail next week, the candidates can redeem themselves and on the stage, I hope they’re held accountable and questioned aggressively for their remarks and actions made during the first full week of September.
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Thanks for reading. Until next time, I’m Flood the Drummer® & I’m Drumming for JUSTICE!™
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