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Sat Feb 27, 2016, 11:50 AM

Spike Lee's right: black people should wake up to 'Brother Bernie'



Spike Lee's right: black people should wake up to 'Brother Bernie'

The director endorsed the Vermont senator on Tuesday. He’s the latest in a series of black intellectuals to recognise Sanders’ superiority over Clinton


by Steven W Thrasher
The Guardian, Feb. 24, 2016

pike Lee is the latest black public intellectual to endorse Bernie Sanders and to question the sanity of black voters and politicians pledging their allegiance to the Clintons, who have done as much harm to black America as any living political couple. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I am mystified by robust black support for Bill and Hillary Clinton.

Spike Lee’s Do the Right Thing helped me wake up about race in America when I first watched it as a teenager. That’s why I was delighted to read that Spike Lee encouraged South Carolina democrats to “wake up” in a radio ad on Tuesday and to vote for “Brother Bernie”.

Bill Clinton governed through playing to white fears by hurting, locking up or even executing black Americans. He left the campaign trail in 1992 to oversee the execution of Ricky Ray Rector, a black man so mentally incapacitated, he reportedly did not eat the dessert from his final meal because he was “saving it for later”. When in office, Bill Clinton ended welfare for poor children and destroyed countless black families through a crime bill even he now admits made mass incarceration worse, while Hillary Clinton would go out and whip up support for this accelerated disenfranchisement and marginalization of black America, even when it meant referring to children as “superpredators”.

The case against Clintonian neoliberalism is compelling. I am glad to see black thinkers making a case for Sanders’ democratic socialism and its potential to address structural racism as an alternative. If anyone is smart enough to effectively make Sanders’ case to black America, it would be the intellectual leaders who have endorsed him thus far.

Take Spike Lee. He is one of the contemporary black geniuses who have helped the nation (and me personally) reconsider race in transformative ways – and the latest to be feeling the Bern. Or Cornel West, who has been stumping for “Brother Bernie” for months. Just as I understood race differently after watching Crooklyn and Jungle Fever, I grew to understand black liberation theology and the radical potential of Christianity by reading West’s books – his influence been immeasurable. And, like much of America, I learned how to better think about the case for reparations after Ta-Nehisi Coates made it in the Atlantic. That’s why it matters so much that he said he would vote for Sanders.

Similarly, much of the country first got woke about the scale and racism of mass incarceration when they read Michelle Alexander’s The New Jim Crow. Alexander has not endorsed Sanders or any candidate – “I endorse the revolution” she wrote – but she has offered the most skewering critique on why “Hillary Clinton doesn’t deserve the black vote” in the Nation. She has also reminded black voters that “we are not checkmated” – that we can approach politics with a sense of possibility.

CONTINUED...

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/feb/24/black-thinkers-bernie-sanders-studied-clintons-true-cost

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Reply Spike Lee's right: black people should wake up to 'Brother Bernie' (Original post)
Octafish Feb 2016 OP
bigtree Feb 2016 #1
SidDithers Feb 2016 #2
bigtree Feb 2016 #3
Name removed Feb 2016 #9
bigtree Feb 2016 #10
Name removed Feb 2016 #11
bigtree Feb 2016 #12
SidDithers Feb 2016 #13
Name removed Feb 2016 #14
Kentonio Feb 2016 #4
bigtree Feb 2016 #6
Kentonio Feb 2016 #7
Octafish Feb 2016 #15
SidDithers Feb 2016 #17
Octafish Feb 2016 #18
SidDithers Feb 2016 #20
Octafish Feb 2016 #22
SidDithers Feb 2016 #23
Octafish Feb 2016 #24
SidDithers Feb 2016 #25
Vattel Feb 2016 #19
PufPuf23 Feb 2016 #27
snagglepuss Feb 2016 #5
Name removed Feb 2016 #8
MineralMan Feb 2016 #16
zappaman Feb 2016 #21
tazkcmo Feb 2016 #26
Juicy_Bellows Feb 2016 #28
Octafish Feb 2016 #29

Response to Octafish (Original post)

Sat Feb 27, 2016, 12:49 PM

1. this is one of those things

...that just grates on folks.

I don't know Spike. I'm sure he's a nice guy, but I don't identify my politics with Spike Lee.

I don't agree with the premise that blacks aren't 'woke' to Bernie. This fellow looks to be in a learning phase. Many folks out here don't need 'black intellectuals' to school us on 'liberation theology,' or lectured about reparations. In so many ways, these prominent black professionals are talking past their black peers, looking for, and gaining self-satisfied encouragement from non-blacks sold on the notion that blacks aren't educating themselves enough to appreciate the wonderfulness that is Bernie, and the supposed awfulness of Hillary.

It's all so goddamn condescending that it's no wonder Sanders is doing so badly among this important voting bloc.

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Response to bigtree (Reply #1)

Sat Feb 27, 2016, 12:58 PM

2. Correct me if I'm wrong...

but I get the sense that black votes are "earned" over a period of years. Decades even.

It's the candidate who becomes a part of the community, by attendinge services, and church suppers, and feeling joy, and sadness, and outrage with the members of the community, and who builds that relationship for years and years.

That's the candidate that earns the loyalty and support of the community.

Obama was already part of the community. Bill and Hillary have been engaging the community for 30 years or more.

Bernie's trying to do it in a matter of weeks or months, and it's just not working.

That's one outsider's perspective, anyway.

Sid

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Response to SidDithers (Reply #2)

Sat Feb 27, 2016, 01:10 PM

3. of course, that's correct, Sid

...there's something perverse in the notion that blacks need to reach out to embrace Sanders, when it's clear that he hasn't spent a great deal of time over his decades in political office personally (and otherwise), directly engaging their communities.

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Response to bigtree (Reply #3)


Response to Name removed (Reply #9)

Sat Feb 27, 2016, 01:40 PM

10. wow

...that's a hell of a campaign appeal.

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Response to bigtree (Reply #10)


Response to Name removed (Reply #11)

Sat Feb 27, 2016, 01:47 PM

12. like I said, that's a hell of a campaign appeal

...you go with that.

Hebet:

" At this point, I'm tired of blacks expecting people to kiss their ass.

In return for their vote. Sorry, you're just not that important. You do not contribute enough to America to be worthy of such special treatment. In fact, the truth is we'd all just be better off without you. You are a burden we're all tired of bearing.

I don't care anymore. Fuck you and your race."


Bye, asshole.

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Response to Name removed (Reply #11)

Sat Feb 27, 2016, 01:48 PM

13. Yeah, I don't think you're on the right board...

Stormfront is over there ----->

Way over there to the right.

Sid

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Response to SidDithers (Reply #13)


Response to SidDithers (Reply #2)

Sat Feb 27, 2016, 01:10 PM

4. What is this bullshit about how black votes are earned in an utterly different way to white votes?

 

There's no damn difference between a white person and a black person. Why exactly would it require 'years. Decades even' for a black person to hear a message and make a decision based on whether it benefits their future?

I'll gladly concede that there's a huge trust issue in many black communities based on how many times they've been used and lied to by white politicians, but that doesn't make 'black votes' some single item that magically behaves differently to 'white votes'.

Sorry, but this kind of language really pisses me off.

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Response to Kentonio (Reply #4)

Sat Feb 27, 2016, 01:20 PM

6. you'd need to consider the primacy of the federal government

...in obtaining and securing basic rights for black individuals.

All of the 'war on establishment' stuff is an anathema to the precious gains blacks have made in the political system over a few recent decades. It's amazing how disconnected non-blacks seem to be from the tenuous hold blacks have on political power and influence which whites have assumed is their right and providence since the inception of our democracy.

To suggest that black voters approach the political process the same as the white majority, is dismissive of this recent history. In fact, the majority of black legislators in the House didn't appear until well into the '80s after a fight over the Voting Rights Act extension which included redistricting which finally recognized and legitimized majority black districts around the nation.

How secure would you feel, in those shoes, in your trust in the political process?

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Response to bigtree (Reply #6)

Sat Feb 27, 2016, 01:24 PM

7. Which is why I said a freely concede that there are huge trust issues there.

 

But I think its dangerous to talk about a singular 'black vote' firstly because it just encourages otherness and also because it seems to completely disrespect the intelligence and freedom of thought of millions of Americans.

That's not any judgement on how black voters choose to cast their votes, frankly that's none of my business.

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Response to SidDithers (Reply #2)

Sat Feb 27, 2016, 02:12 PM

15. You are wrong. Bernie Sanders has an excellent record of supporting Civil Rights

[font size="5"]19 Examples of Bernie Sanders' Powerful Record on Civil and Human Rights Since the 1950s

From fighting segregation to standing against police violence.
[/font size]

By Zaid Jilani / AlterNet July 20, 2015

SNIP...

Here are 20 ways Sanders has stood up for civil and minority rights, starting in the early 1950s up to the present year.

SNIP...

3. Calling For Full Gay Equality: 40 years ago, Sanders started his political life by running with a radical third party in Vermont called the Liberty Union Party. As a part of the platform, he called for abolishing all laws related to discrimination against homosexuality.

4. Standing Up For Victims Of U.S. Imperialism In Latin America: While mayor of Burlington, Vermont, Sanders formally protested the Reagan government's policy of sending arms to Central America to repress left-wing movements. In 1985, he traveled to Nicaragua to condemn the war on people there. He writes about it in his book Outsider In The House: “The trip to Nicaragua was a profoundly emotional experience....I was introduced to a crowd of hundreds of thousands who gathered for the anniversary celebration. I will never forget that in the front row of the huge crowd were dozens and dozens of amputees in wheelchairs – young soldiers, many of them in their teens, who had lost their legs in a war foisted on them and financed by the U.S. government.”

5 Condemned And Opposed Welfare Reform and Dog Whistle Politics:While President Bill Clinton and most Democrats in Congress supported so-called welfare reform politics, Sanders not only voted against this policy change, but wrote eloquently against the dog whistle politics used to sell it, saying, “The crown jewel of the Republican agenda is their so-called welfare reform proposal. The bill, which combines an assault on the poor, women and children, minorities, and immigrants is the grand slam of scapegoating legislation, and appeals to the frustrations and ignorance of the American people along a wide spectrum of prejudices.”

SNIP...

9. Achieved High Ratings From Leading Civil Rights Organizations: A frequent critique of Sanders is that he is from a very white state. While this is true, he certainly has not ignored issues that matter to people of color. In 2002, he achieved a 93 percent rating from the ACLU and a 97% rating by the NAACP in 2006.

10. Voted Against the PATRIOT Act: The USA PATRIOT Act was passed in a 98-2 vote in the Senate and a 357-66 vote in the House. Sanders voted against it, and has voted against renewing it every single time. The law has been used to violate the rights of Arab and Muslim Americans, but few know how extensively it has been used in the drug war; from 2009 to 2010, the law was invoked for 3,034 narcotics cases and only 37 terrorism cases.

CONTINUED...

http://www.alternet.org/election-2016/20-examples-bernie-sanders-powerful-record-civil-and-human-rights-1950s

You must not have read that article, right SidDithers of DU?

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Response to Octafish (Reply #15)

Sat Feb 27, 2016, 02:28 PM

17. You must not have read my post, octafish of DU...

because I didn't say anything about his record. I spoke of his too little, too late outreach to the community.

Sid

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Response to SidDithers (Reply #17)

Sat Feb 27, 2016, 02:31 PM

18. No, I wrote what I wanted to write.

What business is it of yours?

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Response to Octafish (Reply #18)

Sat Feb 27, 2016, 02:38 PM

20. Well, it's completely unrelated to what I wrote...

so, I'm not sure why you put it up.



Sid

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Response to SidDithers (Reply #20)

Sat Feb 27, 2016, 02:45 PM

22. No, it is completely relevant to what you wrote.

Are you voting for Bernie or Hillary? No. Well, what business is it of yours what I write?

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Response to Octafish (Reply #22)

Sat Feb 27, 2016, 02:49 PM

23. OK. For the second time...

I wrote about community outreach and relationships.

You responded with a post about civil rights records.


Those are not the same things.

Hence, your reply was unrelated to my post.


You can write, or link to, whatever or whoever you want, octafish of DU.



Sid

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Response to SidDithers (Reply #23)

Sat Feb 27, 2016, 03:00 PM

24. So what? My post is about African American support for Bernie Sanders.

You missed the guy's 50 year record, which makes wonder why that's any business of yours. Going from what I've read you post, you write to sidetrack discussion:

Spike Lee's right: black people should wake up to 'Brother Bernie'

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Response to Octafish (Reply #24)

Sat Feb 27, 2016, 03:03 PM

25. You're the one that posts a completely unrelated reply...

but I'm the one sidetracking the discussion.



Sid

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Response to SidDithers (Reply #2)

Sat Feb 27, 2016, 02:34 PM

19. Not really. Blacks who vote typically vote for the democratic candidate regardless of whether

 

they know or have any reason to trust that candidate.

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Response to SidDithers (Reply #2)

Sat Feb 27, 2016, 03:50 PM

27. You live in such a Manichean universe

that your opinions are weak sauce for many that read DU regularly.

You appear not to like nor respect many of us here.

Sanders evidently cared and was involved in civil rights issues back in the 1960s.

For you to state that Sanders "trying to do it in a matter of weeks or months, and it's just not working" is two figments of your imagination that you state as "truth" when the statement is truthiness.

How can an admitted "outsider" even make such a generic declaration about the diversity that identify as black voters (or any identifiable social group)?

The Clintons long term trend against economic justice plays into the prejudice of those that gain and support institutional racism as their birthright.

You type propaganda, often not anything of particular value or information.

Most of us have votes that are earned or not earned over years of watching and living our political process.

I am white and never presume to speak for or read the minds of people that Identify as black but I do know that my votes and life attitudes and actions have evolved but have also been consistent in the over-riding idea that we are equal and deserve a fair society and that it is up to all of us to make that moral stance real.

Ron Dellums is one of my favorite politicians of all time. I first learned of him in high school when I lived in the East Bay Area and was anti-war during Vietnam. I voted for Dellums numerous times in the 1970s and 1980s. He is an anti-war social democrat like Sanders, not a neoliberal like the Clintons who support our military empire.

"By 1990, Sanders was a leading member of Jesse Jackson’s National Rainbow Coalition, and the following year he founded the Congressional Progressive Caucus with the help of fellow revolutionaries Ron Dellums and Maxine Waters."

http://www.thenewamerican.com/usnews/politics/item/20786-who-is-bernie-sanders

What you stated about Sanders and the Black communities is not true.

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Response to Octafish (Original post)

Sat Feb 27, 2016, 01:19 PM

5. K n R

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Response to Octafish (Original post)


Response to Octafish (Original post)

Sat Feb 27, 2016, 02:24 PM

16. I think that black voters should vote as they think best.

I'm sure they will do just that.

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Response to Octafish (Original post)

Sat Feb 27, 2016, 02:39 PM

21. Yes, black people must be asleep!



Or is it Stockholm Syndrome?

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Response to Octafish (Original post)

Sat Feb 27, 2016, 03:14 PM

26. oh geez...

White folks are voting for Sec Clinton also. So are Asians. Latinos. Why I'll bet there's a Lebanese-Irish woman that speaks French while working at a Korean owned Kosher restaurant that supports Sec Clinton yet nobody is questioning their judgement like they are questioning African American's judgement. Is this the White Man's Burden in action? I don't think AA's need our help on this.

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Response to Octafish (Original post)

Sat Feb 27, 2016, 03:56 PM

28. Kind of off topic but



You have been, and always shall be, my favorite poster on DU.

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Response to Juicy_Bellows (Reply #28)

Sat Feb 27, 2016, 05:16 PM

29. I appreciate that very much. Our time here isn't long.

What a really smart person found said:



Spike Lee: Bernie Sanders 'Will Do the Right Thing'

Filmmaker officially endorses Democratic candidate in audio clip


By Kory Grow February 23, 2016

Filmmaker Spike Lee has officially endorsed Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders. In a one-minute SoundCloud, the Do the Right Thing director told South Carolina to "wake up" and throw their support behind the Vermont Senator during the state's Democratic primary, which will be held on Saturday.

"I know that you know the system is rigged," Lee said in the recording. "For too long, we've given our votes to corporate puppets. ... Ninety-nine percent of Americans were hurt by the Great Recession of 2008, and many are still recovering. And that's why I'm officially endorsing my brother Bernie Sanders.

"Bernie takes no money from corporations," he continued. "Nada. Which means he is not on the take. And when Bernie gets in the White House, he will 'do the right thing.' How can we be sure? Bernie was at the March on Washington with Dr. King. He was arrested in Chicago for protesting segregation in public schools. He fought for wealth and education equality throughout his whole career. No flipping, no flopping."

CONTINUED...

http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/spike-lee-bernie-sanders-will-do-the-right-thing-20160223



Thank you, Juicy_Bellows! Your kind words mean the world to me. Live Long and Prosper!

Please also keep up the good fight. Our dreams and deeds are how we make the future we ALL deserve.

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