By: Donald V. Watkins
Copyrighted and Published on July 25, 2021
I took a short summer break from writing and posting my articles to enjoy some vacation time in scenic Anthony, New Mexico. The mountainous views and surrounding landscape are breathtaking. I enjoyed every moment of my outdoor activities during my week-long vacation.
When I turned my attention back to what's happening in America, I observed the following truisms about the state of politics in America:
1. We are still in the midst of a COVID-19 pandemic because Republican politicians have discouraged the wearing of masks and the massive national efforts to get Americans vaccinated. Now, there is a pandemic of unvaccinated Americans within the COVID-19 pandemic. We are also battling "Long-COVID," the "Delta Variant," and the "Breakthrough Virus," all because most Republican politicians never took the COVID-19 pandemic seriously. One thing is for sure in this politically-charged environment -- the COVID-19 virus and its variants do not care if we are Democrats, Republicans, or Independents.
2. President Joe Biden continues to exhibit weak leadership with respect to protecting the voting rights of African-Americans and other Americans of color. Biden refuses to use the full power of his office to muster the support needed to pass new voting rights legislation in Congress to protect the voting rights of historically disenfranchised voters of color from the wave of restrictive and suppressive voting laws that are sweeping the nation in Republican-controlled states. President Lyndon B. Johnson set the precedent on how to use presidential power to win passage of civil and voting rights legislation when he twisted the arms of opposing southern senators to enact the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965, and the Fair Housing Act of 1968. The protections afforded to racial minorities and women under these Acts have been systematically decimated by right-wing conservative Justices who have been appointed to the U.S. Supreme Court by Republican presidents since the 1980s.
3. President Biden orchestrated a photo op with the family of George Floyd at the White House in June, but he has yet to meet with the family of Army Private LaVena Johnson to assure them that he will: (a) unseal the Pentagon's classified file on her murder by former four-star general Kevin P. Byrnes on a military base in Balad, Iraq in July 2005, (b) investigate her murder and cover-up thoroughly, and (c) prosecute her murderer and those who covered it up. General Byrnes, who is white, murdered Private Johnson, who was black, after she inadvertently discovered him in a compromising position with his mistress while taking a break from her work as a telephone operator on the base. The Army's Chief of Staff had previously ordered Byrnes, who was married at the time, to end the illicit affair with his lover. Byrne, however, did not have the willpower to do so. When Private Johnson encountered the two lovers at night in a secluded section of the military base that was reserved for private contractors, Byrnes panicked, snapped, attacked, and killed her. Stunned in the moment, Private Johnson did not defend herself during this attack in which Byrnes fractured her neck and shot Private Johnson in the top of her head with his 9-millimeter service revolver. In August 2005, the Secretary of Defense and a top Pentagon official (a) briefed then-President George W. Bush on Private Johnson's murder, (b) promptly fired Byrnes from the Army, (c) subsequently classified Private Johnson's murder as a "suicide, "and (d) labeled her murder file as "top secret." The Pentagon's file on Private Johnson's "suicide" remains classified today, 16 years after her death. Private Johnson's homicide is the highest profile "Black Lives Matter" murder that has not been prosecuted.
4. President Biden's immigration policies are infected with the same latent racism that defines Republican immigration policies. Like their predecessors in office, Biden and Republican leaders in Congress welcome the steady stream of white migrants from European countries. Yet, they have a political problem in welcoming the "tired, poor, and huddled masses" from Central and South American countries. While these politicians focus on the growing stream of illegal migration on America's southern border, white Anglo-Saxon migrants continue to stroll into America illegally by simply walking across the thousands of miles of America's open northern border with Canada, all day, everyday without much of a hassle. This illegal migration on the northern border has gone on for hundreds of years, but our national politicians never talk openly about it.
5. President Biden has collapsed as an advocate for teaching the true history of how white men, including the Founding Fathers, mistreated and abused people of color and women in America for 400 hundred years. Biden has done absolutely nothing to attack the wave of so-called "memory laws" that have passed in Republican-controlled states. These statutes make it unlawful to teach public school students about the cruel and inhuman treatment white men have inflicted upon Native-Americans, African slaves, Asians, Hispanics, religious minority groups, gays, and women since they arrived in America in the early 1600s. Today, the teaching of any critical racial and/or gender subjects that make white students feel guilty about America's "whitewashed" and sanitized history is strictly prohibited under these "memory laws," which are patterned after the ones enacted in Nazi Germany during the reign of Adolf Hitler.
6. We cannot tell who supports the police anymore. Republicans claim they are all for "law and order" when it comes to police brutality against people of color and social justice advocates. However, when former president Donald Trump's supporters violently attacked the Capitol in Washington, D.C. and the police officers who defended it on January 6, 2021, most Republican members of Congress abandoned their prior support for those police officers at a speed that would make Olympic sprinters proud.
7. Biden's Department of Justice continues its tacit acceptance of an all-white Alabama Supreme Court, all-white Alabama Court of Civil Appeals, and all-white Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals in a state that has a 26.8% black population in 2021. All-white governmental bodies are fashionable again in Alabama and they appear to be immune from attack from Biden's Department of Justice.
8. Donald Trump's political appointees continue to run major federal agencies and safeguard Trump's policies, despite Biden's election win in 2020. Many of Trump's appointed COINTELPRO federal prosecutors are still embedded in the Department of Justice and are still persecuting innocent black citizens -- simply because nobody in the Biden administration will stop them. Furthermore, Michael Carvajal, Trump's director of the U.S. Bureau of Prisons (BOP), is still running the show for Trump and is still protecting those BOP national vendors who contributed heavily to Trump's 2020 presidential campaign. The so-called "woke" movement, which is fading rapidly, never touched these "burrowed" pockets of Trump loyalists.
9. Biden, who owes his presidency to black voters who resurrected his politically dead candidacy during the Super-Tuesday Democratic primaries in March 2020, has rewarded blacks with only a few jobs in his administration, some photo ops in the White House, and the signing of symbolic proclamations and commendations. Meanwhile, it is business as usual for Wall Street and the tens of thousands of white vendors who are routinely awarded hundreds of billions of federal dollars in non-bid government contracts on an annual basis.
10. Black political figures in Washington continue to exhibit their collective political impotency and total lack of effective fighting skills in the national political arena. Nothing else can explain (a) why blacks did not receive a fair share of the $7 trillion dollars spent by the federal government to date to help our national economy recover from the devastating impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and (b) why J. Edgar Hoover's name remains of the FBI Headquarters in Washington even after it was documented through internal FBI records that Hoover tried to force Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. into committing suicide in 1963. Where is this generation's political equivalents to Rep. Adam Clayton Powell, U.S. Senator Edward Brooks, and Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall? Florida attorney Benjamin Crump cannot pull the black community's social and economic justice wagon by himself.
These truisms (and many others) show who we really are as a nation. I am not interested in political correctness or political spin on these matters. Whether I am a free man or imprisoned inmate, I will continue to report the cold, hard truth about who we are as a nation. Anything short of this truth is a lie.
A nation that perpetually lies to itself will eventually collapse. I am fighting to make sure this does not happen to America because I am an American who still believes we can be the greatest nation the world has ever known.
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