Democrats Do NOTHING but Wring their Hands

Democrats Do NOTHING but Wring their Hands

Many Democratic Party politicians have decried the police murder of George Floyd and said that we need change. But what do they propose? NOTHING.

The racist cop murder of Floyd is the latest of uncountable examples of how systemic prejudice against people of color is woven into the fabric of this society. To propose real attacks on racism, the politicians would have to attack the system they are sworn to uphold.

We have room here for only a few examples, so let’s start at the top. Joe Biden, the Democratic Party’s choice for president, said, “We are a country with an open wound. None of us any longer can hear the words ‘I can’t breathe’ and do nothing.” But what does he propose? NOTHING! He was vice president for eight years with Obama and in the Senate for 37 years before that and nothing improved. He has had plenty of opportunity to address it with serious ideas and he comes up empty.

After rebellions in black communities in Newark and Detroit in 1967, the government set up a commission on the causes of the unrest. It came out with the Kerner Report. Its findings were clear as to the abundant inequality and injustice that led to social explosions. But what did they do? They amounted to NOTHING. The few reforms enacted immediately after the report came out, such as the Fair Housing Act of 1968 (which prohibited discrimination in the sale, rental and financing of housing), obviously did not desegregate the cities. It is now 52 years later and the situation is in most respects worse than then. 

As Speaker of the House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi is arguably the most powerful Democrat in Congress, perhaps in the nation. In response to the cops’ murder of Floyd, she said, “At this moment of immense sadness across America, our communities are grieving for the staggering loss of life from the coronavirus, which we have never seen in our lifetime. What we have seen over time is a pattern of police violence particularly against the African American community that is sadly not new to us.” She’s right that it’s not new, but what did Democrats do when they had control of the White House and of Congress? NOTHING. Whatever laws they passed that might have looked good, they did not prevent the situation we face today.

One policy maker after another decries racist police violence and offers NOTHING but wringing their hands. House Rep. Dean Phillips, a Democrat from the Minneapolis suburbs, tweeted: “The evil that took George Floyd and the evil burning through Minneapolis will not be extinguished by a policy – rather by a people. A people committed to listening, understanding, and action. Who’s ready?” He’s a policymaker, but what does he propose? NOTHING. And what did he mean about the “evil burning through Minneapolis”? Was he criticizing the cops or the protesters?

More than a century and a half after the end of chattel slavery of African people, there are vast differences between whites and blacks in policing, educational opportunity, housing, health care, and quality of life generally.

It is long overdue for us to stop listening to the politicians, both Democrat and Republican. They both serve the one percent and don’t care about the rest of us. People should go into the streets and scream in protest. But we need to do more than that. We need to organize to fight systematically against a system that exploits and oppresses. What have we got to lose? NOTHING!

Featured image credit: Associated Press