The Confederate Flag: From A Symbol of White Supremacy To A Tool of Mass Distraction

Obama was proof – not that we needed one – that it’s not the skin color of the president (or any politician) that matters, but which class or group of the society he allies himself with and serves. In fact, a black president, due to the trust and loyalty afforded to him by the Black community, has a better opportunity to work against their interests than a white president with no similar pretense. President Obama proved this point beyond any doubt,

Just as the utter uselessness and treachery of Obama and, in fact, the entire Black political establishment who have embedded themselves within the Democratic Party, was being revealed to the Black community, videos surfaced and became public that revealed an unmistakable pattern of police brutality, including shooting, beating or choking to death of unarmed black men and women, at a staggering rate of about one every 28 hours, as if to prove to those still unsure that neither Obama, nor the rest of the Black leadership in Congress, nor Black preachers were on their side or could be counted on to do anything for them, either economically or for their physical safety. To make matters worse, after all the recent murders of unarmed black men that were publicized, President Obama signed into law the “Blue Alert System” designed to make it illegal and punishable to threaten police officers, supposedly to “protect their safety”. 

People finally realized after keeping their hopes up in vain for over six years of having a black president that only they with their direct action on the streets could change things. The #BlackLivesMatter movement that raged across the nation from Ferguson to New York and from Cleveland to Baltimore in reaction to police brutality and murders was a reflection of such collective and spontaneous realization and political awareness. The sheepish and timid reaction at best and total indifference at the worst shown by these politicians to the carnage taking place against the poor Black community laid bare the class affiliation and treasonous nature of Black Democrats, just as the Occupy Wall Street movement did to that of the entire political establishment a few years earlier. 

But, just as with the Occupy movement, which the Democrats tried to own, preempt, control and derail – some Democrats shamelessly began using the word “Occupy” in their literature and speeches while at the same time trying to diffuse it- so too the Black political establishment within the Democratic Party tried to catch up with people and redeem themselves by speaking up against the most egregious of police murders on the one hand, while asking for calm and defending “the good cops” who “put their lives on the line everyday to protect and serve (protect and serve whom and from whom?) on the other. But, their lame effort was too little too late. They had, by and large, lost credibility. The resignation of as many as six city officials, including the police chief in Ferguson, despite letting Michael Brown’s killer cop, Darrel Wilson, walk free, coupled with charging of six officers for the death of Freddie Gray in Baltimore – though there is little chance of conviction or prison term for any of them – was a small bread crumb thrown to calm people’s outrage.

Then, came a golden opportunity for these treasonous politicians to reclaim their lost credibility, when a white supremacist massacred nine blacks at Mother Emmanuel A.M.E. Church in Charleston, South Carolina. Contrary to media depictions, the killer, Dylann Roof, is not a “deranged” or “disturbed” or “mentally ill” person, but rather, by his own admission and racist rants, a white supremacist who hoped to start a race war which could, he hoped, end up killing many African Americans. 

So, how did the Black political establishment react to this atrocity, which was by far much easier to condemn than racist cops killing blacks and poor on the streets everyday? They, along with their white allies in the Democratic Party, found the most useless and inconsequential concession to demand from the whites in the South, a “concession” which would make no difference in people’s lives whatsoever and that was the lowering of the Confederate flag that’s been flying at the Capitol of South Carolina. Instead of real and substantive issues that directly affect the lives of African Americans such as police brutality, mass incarceration, unfair sentencing, high unemployment, poverty and homelessness, the Confederate flag suddenly became the problem and the cause of everything that’s wrong or unjust. The lowering of the flag under which slave owners fought the abolitionists and has been flying on top of the state Capitol all these years as a reminder that the feelings of the Southern whites havn’t changed about the African Americans is now being touted as a sign of progress in “race relations”, just as the presidency of Obama has been. And just like the latter, this too is nothing but a tool of deception and distraction.

And, now, Hillary Clinton who has her hands in the blood of blacks and Browns in Asia and Africa, gets the opportunity to join the black politicians in her Party in calling for the removal of the flag and present herself as a champion of the Black Community whose votes she needs, just as Obama needed and got in the last two elections.

After raising the issue of the flag to win back the blacks they’ve lost after years of neglect and betrayal, the black politicians are quick to put a brake on the demands of their people by calling for “reconciliation”, as if they’re talking about two peoples who can’t get along, rather than an institutional and systemic racism that’s woven tightly into the very fabric of the economic system which they have become a part and servants of and by so becoming, they have lined up against their people and alongside the white supremacist ruling class and have become part of the problem, rather than the solution. 


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