Less than a week ago in the wake of the questionable shooting death of two black men by police officers in separate incidents. Former Speaker of the House of Representatives, Newt Gingrich, said something profound.
“If you are a normal, white American, the truth is you don’t understand being black in America and you instinctively under-estimate the level of discrimination and the level of additional risk,” said Newt Gingrich
Newt, unlike his Republican brother Rudy Giuliani, actually made sense. The barriers of institutional racism are very real and not limited to the over-policing of minority communities. In response to the same separate shooting incidents, Guiliani took it upon himself to give a class on black parenting in an interview.
“You’ve got to teach your children that the real danger to them is not the police,” Giuliani said. “The real danger to them, 99 out of 100 times are other black kids who are going to kill them, that’s the way they’re going to die.”
Yes, because the problem isn’t the possibility of being black and being killed by a cop. Because, if on the off chance you are black and you’re killed by a cop. The truth is, it’s simply because of all that black-on-black crime. You now, because every black person in America happens to live in Chicago. Uh-huh, and we chew bullets for breakfast while washing them down with malt liquor.
I have yet to hear a police officer in court say, “I shot that black man because of all the black-on-black crime, your honor.” If that ever happened, then I’d say that Giuliani has a point. Unfortunately, however, the problem is that after the shooting of anyone, police officers rarely if ever make it to court.
There’s so much more I can say about Giuliani’s comments, bu7t that’s a future blog post in itself. I promise you, I have a harsh opinion on that.
But, I digress…
Newt Gingrich is full of shit
Getting back to Newt Gingrich, however. I actually gave him props for saying what he said. It’s pretty obvious that our politics are very different. However, in my view, Newt Gingrich deserved props for having the courage to say what has been denied by many of his right-wing homies. Hey, even a broken clock is right at least twice a day.
Predictably, however, as right-wing politics would have it, a bigot can’t help being a bigot. And this is where we are today with Newt Gingrich in the wake of the latest suspected terrorist attack in Nice, France. Since the attack by yet another alleged terrorist, Newt Gingrich is now saying that the government should test everyone with a Muslim background to see if they believe in Sharia Law. If they do, according to Newt, they should be deported.
“Let me be as blunt and direct as I can be. Western civilization is in a war. We should frankly test every person here who is of a Muslim background, and if they believe in sharia, they should be deported,” Gingrich said on Fox News. “Sharia is incompatible with Western civilization. Modern Muslims who have given up Sharia – glad to have them as citizens. Perfectly happy to have them next door.”
Well, as a black man who knows a little bit about he U.S. Constitution, I know that what Newt suggests is unconstitutional. But of course, Newt said this on Fox News so naturally, the matter of religious tests being unconstitutional means very little. After all, we’re talking about a viewership that’s is made up of mostly older, white, Christian folks. Yes, the type who cling to their guns and religion with antipathy towards others.
You know, the kind who’d be up in arms over any talk of banning Christmas?
Newt Gingrich knows better
So why is Newt saying this? In a word: politics. Newt knows that this cannot and never will happen. After all, he’s supposed to be a student of history and one of the most intelligent men in the Republican party. As politics and this election cycle would have it, Newt’s timing here can be determined to be one of political expedience. Remember, Newt Gingrich is one of three finalists on Donald Trump’s list as a potential Vice President running mate. Therefore, Newt’s appeal to the party’s blatantly bigoted xenophobic base makes perfect sense. Politically expedient or not, what Newt proposes is unacceptable. Not only that, it is totally un-American. But then again, perhaps bigotry is as American as the apple pie with centuries of oppression baked into it.
Newt Gingrich knows that a religious test for Muslims is unconstitutional. Still, he does the equivalent of lying to a woman to be able to have sex.
The sad part is that xenophobic Republicans are eating it up like hotcakes. You know, like the woman who thinks she’s the only one? Yes, even though dude calls out another woman’s name, on occasion, during sex? Yes, they’re that pathetic. But then again, when you’re white and you think you rule the world, it’s easy to buy into racist ideas set to marginalize an entire group, yes?