Calling Out Elected Officials
I’m riffing off a couple of ideas from Ibram X. Kendi and Caitlin Johnstone in this blog post.
Ibram X. Kendi
Ibram X. Kendi defines racist as “One who is supporting a racist policy through their actions or inaction or expressing a racist idea.” And “A racist policy is any measure that produces or sustains racial inequity between racial groups.” Also – “Racial inequity is when two or more racial groups are not standing on approximately equal footing.”
Governor Pete Ricketts on August 15, 2020, vetoed a bill that would ban job discrimination based on a person’s natural hair texture or style. “White”people generally do not have to worry about being discriminated against because of their hair texture or style. “Black” people do.
In other words, these two “racial” groups are not standing on approximately equal footing and the governor, by his veto, sustained a racist policy. This is not the first time Governor Ricketts has shown himself to be a racist; this is just where I am beginning the count.
As Ibram Kendi points out, calling someone a racist is not a slur or a disparaging remark; it is a simple description of their behavior and as such is either true or false. Governor Ricketts stated that “…while he supported the intent of LB 1060, its wording was unclear and didn’t specify hairstyles exclusive to one race.” Which has nothing to do with the fact that “Black” people are being fired for natural hair styles while “White” people are not. Good try, though, Pete.
Caitlin Johnstone encourages us to reject the MainStream Media narratives and honor and speak the truth both in our daily lives and in our politics.
The term “oligarch” is a simple description, not a slur or disparaging remark. “Oligarch” describes one’s position in a country’s power structure and applies as equally to Pete Ricketts, billionaire scion of the TD Ameritrade fortune, as it does to George Soros. If you only follow the MainStream Media, you may be surprised to find someone other than a Russian or a Ukrainian described as an oligarch; but the term itself has no nationality. You will just hardly ever find someone from the United States tagged as an Oligarch in the MainStream Media.
Some may be offended at my using these terms to describe the Governor. I do respect the office of the Governor; however the office holder, whoever it is, has to earn respect. This Pete has consistently failed to do: whether it is his handling of the Corona virus, the overcrowded state penitentiary, or the Medicaid expansion; in issues involving human lives, Pete falls miserably short.
Conclusion: Nebraska Governed By A Racist Oligarch
So perhaps as a way to begin to describe the situation, we can state that Nebraska is governed by a racist oligarch. This is simply a statement of fact and in no way is a slur or pejorative. It is either true or false and I expect anyone who cares to debate this description to stick to facts.