Opinion Let’s Hope That Kamala Harris Is Done Pandering to White America
Willie Brown: Kamala Harris should 'politely decline' any offer to be Biden's running mate
Former San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown (D) advised Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) to "politely decline" any offer to be presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden's running mate.Brown wrote that the vice presidency would likely hinder any further political ambitions for Harris."[H]istorically, the vice presidency has often ended up being a dead end. For every George H.W. Bush, who ascended from the job to the presidency, there's anBrown wrote that the vice presidency would likely hinder any further political ambitions for Harris.
Kamala Harris,, has often been referred to as the “ ,” a lazy, reductive moniker meant to highlight superficial similarities between ambitious biracial attorneys who are now both on a presidential ticket.
But a much more consequential link between Harris and Obama is the way that both—to avoid being typecast as “too Black”—prioritized white comfort by embracing politics that often neglected, ignored, or straight-up harmed Black folks.
Trump Donated to ‘Meanest’ Kamala Harris in 2011, 2013
President Donald Trump donated to Democratic vice presidential nominee Kamala Harris in 2011 and 2013. © Photographer: Daniel Acker/Bloomberg Kamala Harris Trump called Harris the “meanest” and “most horrible” senator when asked about her joining the Joe Biden ticket on Tuesday. Yet he gave donations of $5,000 on Sept. 26, 2011, and $1,000 on Feb. 20, 2013, to Harris’s re-election campaign for California attorney general, according to state campaign finance records.
And those efforts to transcend race—in a country where the mere acknowledgement of racism by Black folks is treated as a militant act of rage by white Americans—is an exercise in futility and cowardice. Harris has a chance to learn from Obama’s mistakes and recognize that no amount of support for anti-Black policies will ever do enough to allay white fears of radical Blackness. That there’s no need to try and reason with white supremacy. Just speak the truth instead.
To be sure, Black politicians are often electorallyracism . That’s undoubtedly a key part of the reason why Obama mostly resisted discussing race, and especially racism—to avoid inflaming the hyper-delicate sensibilities of white voters. During his first two years in office, according to political scientist Daniel Q. Gillion, .
Here are Kamala Harris's K Street connections
Former staffers and associates of Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) just got a lot more influential.Harris, who was named running mate for presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden on Tuesday, has a former staffer working as a lobbyist, and several lobbyists in D.C. have thrown fundraisers for the California Democrat over the years.Grant Barbosa, a former aide to Harris, is director of government affairs and policy at Emergent BioSolutions, a biopharmaceutical company that develops vaccines and therapeutics and provides medical devices for biodefense.Before becoming a lobbyist, Barbosa was legislative assistant to Harris for a year starting in March 2017.
But that meant he was often mum on pressing issues of anti-Black racism and injustice. Though he would become aon his way out the door, Obama’s response to the racial justice uprisings in Ferguson and then across the country in 2014 was to assemble a —not to address the national epidemic of police violence in Black communities but rather to “ .” As white grew and racial disparities persisted, and shamed Black folks for outcomes driven by structurally racist systems they had no hand in creating—a stark reminder of his 2012 declaration that he was “ of Black America.”
Similar appeals to whites about supposed Black pathologies—and support of blame-the-victim policymaking—sit at the core of Harris’ tough-on-crime stance, which garnered winningin her 2003 bid to be City Attorney and the endorsement of in her 2014 reelection as California Attorney General. They informed Harris’ endorsement of a truancy law that jailed of elementary school kids, as well as her opposition to the reform of unequally enforced .
Gloria Steinem: Selection of Kamala Harris recognizes that 'black women ... are the heart and soul of the Democratic Party'
Feminist pioneer Gloria Steinem praised former Vice President Joe Biden's selection of Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) as his running mate Thursday, calling Black women "the heart and soul of the Democratic Party.""In naming Kamala Harris as his vice president, Biden has recognized that black women, 96% of whom voted for Hillary Clinton, are the heart and soul of the Democratic Party," the Ms. Magazine co-founder said in a statement to CNN's"In naming Kamala Harris as his vice president, Biden has recognized that black women, 96% of whom voted for Hillary Clinton, are the heart and soul of the Democratic Party," the Ms. Magazine co-founder said in a statement to CNN's Christiane Amanpour.
It was Harris who first described herself—proudly at the time—as California’s “” in July 2016, nearly two years into the Black Lives Matter era and just two weeks after the back-to-back racist police murders of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile. Those events apparently failed to shake her belief that there was still more political mileage to be gained from shoring up her image as a law-and-order prosecutor even as she paid lip service to being a “ .”
The “top cop” boast was one of several factors,, that helped sink Harris’ presidential dreams. Defenders continue to claim that Harris, as a candidate who was both Black and a woman, could not have promoted progressive reforms lest she be seen as “soft on crime,” a label that would have been career suicide in the overly carceral 1990s and 2000s. Those same defenders say that to overcome race and gender, or more pointedly, race and gender bias, Harris necessarily downplayed—the temptation is to write “compromised”—her deeply-held progressive ideals. In other words, the theory goes, Harris did what she had to do.
Joe Biden and Kamala Harris offer their condolences to Donald Trump
Joe Biden and Kamala Harris offer their condolences to Donald Trump after the death of his younger brother, Robert. © Carlos Barria / Reuters Joe Biden, Kamala Harris A few words of compassion towards their opponent. Sunday, Joe Biden and Kamala Harris offered their condolences to Donald Trump, the day after of the death of his brother Robert . "Mr. the President, Jill and I are saddened to learn of the passing of your younger brother Robert.
But there’s nothing a Black politician can do, no concessions to white supremacy or damage to Black lives, that’s enough to shield that politician from racist condemnations. Obama was accused of being an undercover Marxist, a Muslim double-agent, and a secret Kenyan national. For all his silence on issues afflicting the Black community,still relations. The de facto spokesperson for the racist birther movement, Donald Trump, insisted Obama was neither an American citizen nor the .
has been following his father’s birther lead while targeting Harris, retweeting social media messages claiming that her South Asian and Jamaican parentage make her not “American Black.” Meanwhile, a whole other segment of racist white people have dog whistled that Harris is “ .” Before Biden picked her, white men in his camp had derided Harris as “ ” and prone to “ the wrong way”—typically racist and sexist complaints that follow Black women who are too uppity to know their place. Harris’s tough-on-crime agenda is a handicap in a way it has never been for Biden, the white male politician who co-wrote the 1994 crime bill and once boasted of authoring legislation that would “ hang people for jaywalking.”
Angelina Jolie loves the 'chaos' of quarantining with her six kids, more news
Angelina Jolie loves the 'chaos' of quarantining with her six kids, more news
Perhaps Harris’ losing presidential campaign might offer her some clarity now. In vying to become Biden’s second-in-command, Harris seemed to do a kind of priority reassessment—penning essays on the, vocally criticizing the system of policing overall and calling for a “ in America,” and apologizing for . She signed on to net in the time of a pandemic that has disproportionately affected the physical and economic health of Black and brown Americans. Harris staffers contend the shift is not a matter of political pragmatism but evidence that the vice presidential nominee has “ ,” and is just supporting proposals that “fit with the type legislation that she always supported while in the Senate.” It seems more likely that there is some political calculation going on, but if it leads Harris to promote less harmful policies for Black people and families, that’s headed in the right direction.
It’s just as critical that Harris not waffle here like she did on, say,primary. If she wants Black folks that are rightly suspicious of her political motives in this moment to believe this is the progressive she has always been—but felt unable to admit being—her commitment to Black voters can’t be compromised in the lead up to election day.
Harris is likely to be one ofever, arriving during one of the most disastrous periods of this country’s history. Her running mate has a record on race that is, simply, not good. (Also, he keeps adding to the .)
And there are many progressive Black voters who have little to no enthusiasm about voting for the crime-bill guy and the top cop.
What would change that is if Harris uses the platform she has as vice president to address racial inequity in a direct and meaningful way, regardless of the racist slings and arrows that are guaranteed to follow.
At the DNC, America meets Kamala Harris' blended family .
Family members Maya Harris, Meena Harris and Ella Emhoff gave the nominating speech for Kamala Harris at the DNC.A biographical montage for Harris' family life was jointly presented by her sister, Maya Harris, her niece Meena Harris, and her stepdaughter Ella Emhoff, who called her "Momala, the world’s greatest step-mom.