Many of us know the details surrounding the horrors of slavery, Jim Crow, mass incarceration, the war on drugs (a.k.a. the war on Blacks), and institutional racism in America. However, some were so deluded by the idea of America’s first Black president that they seem to have forgotten that this country was built on hate. There are some who actually believed (and some who still do) in the existence of a post-racial America. Though I don’t consider myself a part of this ingenuous group of citizens, I still, somehow, had hope that last night’s election would result in a win for the Democratic candidate. It wasn’t so much that I wanted Hillary Clinton to win as I wanted hate to lose. How naïve of me to believe, even briefly, that the same practices instrumental in constructing this “great country” would be the underdogs in this presidential race. A platform filled with hate, bigotry, racism, prejudice, misogyny, homophobia & sexism prevailed because, sooner or later, America had to come full circle and revisit what made her tick in the first place. America needed a serious purge of the message of hope that came with the election of a Black president, the sentiment of Black Power that comes from the Black Lives Matter Movement, and the false idea of the acceptance of diversity some held in this country, which is made up of so many cultures. See, every once in a while, whiteness has to remind everyone who’s boss.
Over the past 8 years, white anger grew, and resulted in “whitelash”, a term coined just last night by activist and CNN commentator Van Jones.
“We don’t want to feel that someone has been elected by throwing away some of us to appeal more deeply to others.” -Van Jones
It was cute at first, electing the first Black president and all, but that bright-eyed newness has slowly turned into a white person’s worst nightmare—let’s call it a whitemare, in the spirit of coining terms. Every time they turned on the TV they saw a Black man in power, speaking at press conferences, addressing large crowds, smiling, waving, breathing, addressing the issues of their country, as if he knows what it means to be an American; moreover, Beyoncé and Jay Z were always at the White House. Then, to top it off, Black people had the nerve to complain and protest about being targeted and killed by the police—the nerve! This isn’t what they signed up for; a Black president should equal Black contentment, right? So they secretly and silently endorsed their great white hope. Make America great again—yes! Build a wall to keep out the “bad hombres”—yes! Blacks and Hispanics are to blame for the nation’s violent crime—yes! Muslims are terrorists, and terrorism has no place in this country—yes! They knew all along that they were going to support Trump, but since explicit racism is no longer in style, they kept it a secret and feigned support for Hillary Clinton instead.
There seems to be a formula that America observes: whenever X amount of “minority” victories occur, no matter the magnitude, the follow-up is systematic whitelash. Honestly, we should have seen this coming, but that doesn’t mean it should hurt any less. Black people in this country have never been afforded the right to grieve, our mental health is a myth to whites. Our superhuman bodies and otherworldly brains must make grief, despair, and hurt feelings inconceivable to the white bigot; they think this while simultaneously calling us “too sensitive” for speaking out about blatant injustices and inconsistencies of policies in this great country of theirs, but I digress.
Though I will keep pushing for greatness and will conduct my business as usual, not letting hate get the best of me, my feelings were hurt last night when they shouldn’t have been. So stop smiling at me, America, just so you can stab me in the back. Take notes from your new orange leader and tell me you hate me to my face. Stop trying to disarm me with that fake tight-lipped grin and your fake interest in my Blackness served up with an under-seasoned side of micro-aggression. Stop trying to convince me that we live in a post-racial society. Back away from my children—I will raise them the way I see fit. Keep your murderous police officers out of my community—we got this.
America, last night you were exposed to all those who forgot what a nasty woman you are. Stay true to your colors, back up off me, and let me be great, because everything that makes you “great” has finally come out of hiding. Congrats, girl!