There’s an undercurrent of a debate going on in social media on the issue of Kamala Harris’s race. One of the reasons Biden picked Kamala Harris for his V.P. choice was that she may attract Black voters. But some have questioned whether or not she can be considered black enough as her mother was from India, and her dad was from Jamaica (the Caribbean Jamaica, not the one in Queens, NY). During the primary season, in February 2019, CNN’s Don Lemon and April Ryan had an argument about Kamala Harris’s “blackness.”
As reported by the Atlanta Black Star, on the February 13th episode of CNN tonight, Lemon “shouted down” April Ryan during a discussion about Kamala Harris’ “blackness.”
“Number one, what does ‘Black enough’ mean?” she began. “[Harris] is a Black woman. She is a mixed-race woman. When you see her, you see her Blackness. But she is also South Asian … and her dad is Jamaican. She is a Black woman.”
Cutting in, Lemon contended the issue was never about Harris being “Black enough,” but was more so about whether she shares the experience of American descendants of slaves, also known as “ADOS.”
“No, no, no, no. I don’t think you hear what people are saying,” he told Ryan. “To want the distinction to say is she African-American, or is she Black or is she … whatever — there is nothing wrong with that. There is a difference between being African-American and being Black.”
Lemon argued that all Harris had to say is that she is Black, not African-American.
(…) “So she could indeed be African-American mixed with others, but she is a Black woman,” she said.
“Jamaica is not America,” Lemon said, interrupting her again. “Jamaica did not come out of Jim Crow. I’m just saying.”
“She was born here in America!” Ryan shot back. “So, let’s talk about [Sen.] Ted Cruz. Ted Cruz was born in Canada and his father —”
“This isn’t about Ted Cruz,” Lemon butted in once more, accusing his guest of changing the subject.
“It’s hypocrisy! I’m not changing the subject!” a flustered Ryan shouted. “I don’t know what you want from me.”
The two continued yelling over one another before another panelist chimed in.
Lemon eventually drove home his point, making sure to emphasize the difference between the historical experiences African-Americans and Black people who have immigrated to the United States.
“You’re missing the point,” he told Ryan. “People are asking [Harris] if you are African-American if you are someone who came out of Jim Crow, out of American slavery. Are you [a] descendant out of that? That’s all I’m saying.”
Below is a video of the Don Lemon/April Ryan Argument
As for Harris, I have only heard her describe herself as “a person of color,” which is a strange phrase because when I have a sunburn, I’m a person of color. As I am neither Black nor African-American (although in high school, I did have a Jew-fro), and the position laid out by Don Lemon or anyone else who believes in the #ADOS movement is outside my experience.
There is a disturbing thing about this argument, along with similar type personal knocks about Kamala Harris seen on social media during the past 24-hours. Things such as she only got her start because she was the girlfriend of S.F. Mayor Willie Brown and that generations ago, her ancestors were slave owners.
Not one of those personal attacks matters! It’s her political positions that are important.
When I see Kamala Harris, I see a left-wing extremist who wants government-run healthcare (and banning private healthcare). Harris wants an executive order taking away people’s guns, wants to ban fracking, and supports the green new deal. Kamala Harris recruited illegal immigrants to work in her Senate office, said our ICE officers were the KKK and delivered a 15 felony indictment against the two pro-life reporters who made the undercover videos exposing Planned Parenthood sales of the parts of recently aborted babies–just to name a few of her radical positions.
No matter who Joe Biden picked as his running mate, my vote was going to the Trump/Pence ticket. The fact that he picked Kamala Harris as his V.P. candidate makes me more confident in my vote selection.
BTW I can attest to the fact that Kamala Harris isn’t Jewish (try to challenge me on that).
Cross-posted with The Lid
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