NYU Black Renaissance Noire NYU Black Renaissance Noire Vol 17.2: Fall 2017 - Page 6

editorial My Take It mattered not to those voters that Donald Trump, a man said to have an abnormally short attention span, had absolutely no experience in government or as a public servant on any level (local, state, or national). Nor did it matter that he purportedly doesn’t read serious books, preferring to get his information from cable television (or create his own “fake news” and “alternative facts”); that he outsources his manufacturing jobs overseas and employs foreign workers at his resorts at home. These voters proudly wore his “Make America Great Again” caps and other paraphernalia made in China without the least bit of irony. Neither did they care that he cheated poor students out of their savings at his fake university nor that he has been married three times and has admittedly mistreated women. His bankruptcies also didn’t matter or the fact that he reportedly consorts with known criminals and Russian mobsters. Despite his reputation as a notoriously greedy kleptocrat, self-centered narcissist, and pathological liar, White people voted for him in overwhelming numbers just because he is a White man, albeit one who had been a third rate television star. At the core of this vote is a toxic and virulent racism and profound misogyny deeply ingrained in the White American psyche. For me, Trump’s presidency is a copy-cat version of his former “Apprentice” reality tv show, with him a B-rated actor pretending to be a gangster businessman ordering everybody around and saying nasty things about and to everybody he dislikes and those who don’t flatter him — former president Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, Reince Priebus, whom he re cently fired as White House Chief of Staff, Jeff Sessions, his Attorney General, and James Comey, whom he fired as head of the fbi. I suspect his celebrity status based on his reality tv show also played a huge role in forming his base of supporters, especially the large number of White women, surprising numbers of Blacks, Latinos, Asians, and young Whites, who voted for him and who just didn’t seem to care about his unsavory reputation and crass and juvenile behavior. I think to young Whites, Trump is like a character from a comic strip, a fantastical, harmless figure of entertainment, and that they regard his presidency like the “Survivor” television series or a “Hunger Games” movie. Donald Trump’s main goal, in my opinion, is to squirrel away gazillions of tax payers’ dollars in competition with Vladimir Putin, who has reportedly amassed over $200 billion during his long reign as head of Russia and who wears atop his balding head the crown as the richest man in the world. In my view, Donald Trump is using the presidency of the United States as his stepping-stone to achieving, perhaps even exceeding, a similar end. The massive flow of money from foreign guests and members of the Republican Party filling the coffers of his Washington d.c. Trump Hotel is a daily reminder of Trump’s blatant violation of the emolument clause, which is supposed to prevent Presidents and other politicians from enriching themselves while in office. I don’t see the “bromance” with his “base” of ill-informed White voters and other supporters, the sycophantic, cowardly herd of Republicans in the Senate and Congress, the namby-pamby, befuddled members of the Fourth State (print, network and cable tv news media) abating soon. Too many are too busy ducking and dodging all the bombast, the bullying, the lie-infested tweets that the mad 45th President hurls at them. Now Trump and his backers have taken the unprecedented step of ramping up “Trump News,” a live tv broadcast airing from Trump Tower in New York. The channel, led by Trump’s daughter-in law, Lara Trump, the wife of Trump’s son Eric, is set to disseminate “fake news” and hype the false achievements of Donald Trump. At the time of this writing, Kayleigh McEnany, a former conservative commentator, who resigned from cnn to take on her new job, is their on-air personality. This new telecast on Facebook resembles state-run news agencies used to pump up and celebrate bogus assertions by all dictators, which the 45th President yearns to become! Truly a troubling and sordid development that should concern every American citizen who wants to live in a free democracy. Having said all this, I sense an even more harmful breakdown of civility and normal governmental procedures on the horizon, including the reshaping of the federal judiciary, with right-wing federal judges being approved by the Republican Senate, while most people are watching the Trump clown show on tv and following the Trump Twitterfest on social media. Under the mantra of being friendly towards business, these conservative judges will reverse environment rules and laws, permitting companies like Tyson and others to continue creating dead zones in the Gulf of Mexico, in lakes, rivers and protected lands all across this country. I also believe Mr. Trump and his enablers will produce an exceedingly dark period of interpersonal relationships between the races, potentially leading to a possible catastrophic racial conflagration that is looming over the nation like a terrible storm, and will ultimately lead to a disaster that could destroy the country. It will be neither a reality tv show, a “Hunger Games” movie, nor an episode of the “Survivor.” It will not be Isis or a foreign government but the furor within that does us in. Once again, we at Black Renaissance Noire are proud to offer you another dynamic issue; we hope you find it an exciting, engrossing read. We are privileged to publish the poetry of Opal Palmer Adisa, Basie Allen, Sandra Cisneros, Victor Hernández Cruz, Hakim Hasan, Jerzy Illig, K. Curtis Lyle, Thylias Moss, Ishmael Reed, Valencia Robin, Mervyn Taylor, Ijeoma Umebinyuo and Derek Walcott; the fiction of paul r. harding, John McCluskey and Ishmael Reed; the non-fiction prose of Andre Bagoo, Elena Karina Byrne, Wallace Ford, Paul Carter Harrison on Derek Walcott and August Wilson, Patricia Hinds on the artists-brothers, Beauford and Joseph Delaney, E. Ethelbert Miller on Lucille Clifton, Judylyn S. Ryan, Cathy Kimball on the visual art of Oliver Lee Jackson, and Camille Yarbrough; and the visual art of Nicole Awai, Daniel Dabriou, Leroy Henderson, Chester Higgins Jr, Oliver Lee Jackson and James Little. Finally, with great sadness I want to take note of the passing this year of two remarkable artists: the great poet and playwright, Derek Walcott, from the Caribbean island of St. Lucia, who received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1992, and Vertamae Smart-Grosvenor, the legendary, pioneering “culinary anthropologist,” raconteur, and award-winning radio personality. Both were close personal friends of mine, and I miss them immensely. As always, dear reader, your comments and feedback are welcome and appreciated on this and every issue. Thank you for your continued support of our efforts. n Exit polls from the 2016 election suggested that many White Americans who voted for Donald J. Trump for President of the United States over Hillary Clinton did so as a reaction against the presidency of Barack Obama, and also because they preferred a White male over a White woman in that job. His refusal to acknowledge that an overwhelming number of members of the intelligence community accept as fact that Russia hacked into the 2016 Presidential election to favor electing him over Hillary Clinton and his craven tendency to just lie about almost everything (since becoming president, it’s reported that he has told over 900 at the time of this writing), coupled with his extremely high level of incompetence, have plunged the nation’s standing around the world to its lowest depths in the histor y of this great country to the point where the United States has become a piñata for all around the world to bash. In the final analysis, however, this sad, depressing scenario is all about money (at least it is in the way I view it) — all about Trump making boatloads of greenbacks from his exalted position as President of this yet-to-be United States of America. His presidency also provides Trump’s more well-heeled, mostly White fellow kleptocrats a path to making even more money, while the welfare of the country be damned! The lunacy of this out of control idiocy is not just a terrible state of affairs, it’s also a highly inefficient way to run a country, not to mention cleaving an even greater racial and class divide in an already broken nation. President-elect Donald Trump walks to take his seat for the inaugural swearing-in ceremony at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., Friday, January 20, 2017. Trump’s sad performance at the g-20 gathering of world leaders in Hamburg, Germany in July of this year — especially his ridiculous, unprecedented, unhinged speech preceding the g-20 gathering in Warsaw, Poland, where he continued his attack on former President Barack Obama and the entire American security and intelligence establishment with blatant lies each and every day — made him into a virtual laughing stock. By Quincy Troupe