Watching the good ol’ boys up close

Crazy Faith Ministries

With the most recent confusion swirling out of the White House, the potency, power and arrogance of white supremacy is giving off a glaring light.

African Americans who have gone up against White police officers and in fact, a justice system that is disproportionately White, have seen it for decades. There has seemed to be a feeling amongst police officers – mostly White but not all – that they can do anything they want and get away with it, and their assumption has been mostly correct.

White men with power and White men who think they have power, or should have it, because they are White, are dangerous. The justice system is filled with White men who believe they are morally and racially superior; many of them do what they want with impunity and they are not afraid of being called to accountability.

We are seeing this phenomenon in the White House under President Trump and in our society in general, and we are seeing the broad reach of white supremacy. White men have not only disrespected Black men, but Black and White women as well. While they touted the sanctity of White women, they historically abused their women, even as they raped Black women at will. They have done it for decades

Their confidence in the system to protect them has caused their capacity moral behavior to suffer. They always deny that they are racist, and they are quick to call a woman who is brave enough to expose their sexual indiscretions liars. They have become expert at claiming victimhood as real victims have called them out, and for too long, their abuses have gone unaccounted for.

Black women who were raped by White men were told to be quiet or they might be lynched. White women who were raped by White men remained quiet as well, because to expose the men would compromise too much of what White women wanted in life, and also be a cause for them to fear for their lives.

White men could and did order Black women around and the women had no choice but to obey if they wanted to live. In the case of Ella Ree Jones, for example, the driver of the bus noted that a White man was standing. He demanded that Jones get up; Jones said she was sick and said she didn’t think she could stand up, but the bus driver wasn’t having it. To make a long story short, this young woman, a college student, was taken to City Hall and was badly beaten by police officers. She wasn’t raped but she was accosted by law enforcement officers – and no officer was ever charged.

The president has been accused by multiple women of sexual misconduct but has not been held accountable. The president and others defended Roy Moore when he was accused of sexually accosting young teens, and the good ol’ boys resorted to calling the women liars. Now we have a high-ranking White House official, Rob Porter, accused of domestic abuse and the good ol’ boys – and only now, since the picture of one of his wives with a black eye – are the good ol’ boys having to admit that perhaps he was wrong. If reports are to be believed, all of the White House people who knew about his beating his wives chose to be quiet and just let him get away with it. It’s classic white supremacy.

John Kelly praised this man until he was forced by the revelation of the beaten wife, to denounce him, but clearly, he didn’t care that women had been beaten. Some have voiced anger that Kelly’s judgement is being questioned because he is a military veteran. He is, they say, a war hero and because of that, we should leave him alone.

That’s the same line that is given about corrupt police officers; they risk their lives – which they do – and if they do something wrong, we should all keep quiet about it. They are heroes to many.

But a hero is not necessarily a good person. The police officers who have participated in violence against Blacks and Browns and Muslims and immigrants … and women … might have done some really good work on the streets in fighting crime, but their treatment of innocent people is not heroic. It is criminal.

The more I watch what this administration, the more I see in a clear way the depth and breadth of white supremacy. Those who are getting caught – not only for sexual and domestic violence offenses, but for alleged criminal offenses – are whining and claiming to have been victimized by those who have spoken out.

That’s what the white supremacist culture nurtures – a group of people who think they are above the law and who know that they really do not have to worry about the “rule of law.” They make the laws and they change them to fit their purposes. It has been their way for so long that one wonders if they can ever learn to understand that all people, not just White men – have value.

Rev. Dr. Susan K Smith is the founder and director of Crazy Faith Ministries. She is available for speaking. Contact her at revsuekim@sbcgloba.net.

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