Virginia governor Ralph Northam is in the middle of a firestorm after reports surfaced that he wore blackface as a student at Eastern Virginia Medical School. To everyone’s surprise, Northam refused to step down as governor. Northam was defiant, and decided to remain as governor. Wearing blackface was triggering many African Americans, but it was not an impeachable offense. Now Northam is marshaling forces – staff, publicists, strategists – to help improve his image. This involved reading Roots by Alex Haley and The Case For Reparations by Ta-Nehisi Coates. Ironically, his advisors never mentioned Shock Exchange: How Inner-City Kids From Brooklyn Predicted the Great Recession and the Pain Ahead, which is essential reading for every student in Virginia.
Northam is currently on a tour to reconcile with African Americans. He spoke with Gayle King of CBS about everything from his blackface moment to slavery. In choosing a white platform to promote racial equity seems disingenuous.
“…I was born in white privilege and that has implications to it…” Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam says. @GayleKing: “Did you not know that you were born into white privilege?” https://t.co/5freBe3rdH pic.twitter.com/C1HiBGj27D
— CBS Evening News (@CBSEveningNews) February 11, 2019
King walked away with the notion that no one in Virginia believes Ralph Northam is racist:
CBS “This Morning” host Gayle King on Monday said that Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D) “has a lot of support in the state of Virginia,” while adding that the people she has spoken to in the state “do not believe” the governor is racist.
“It’s a very interesting time for the governor because what I walked away feeling is that he so wants to make this right,” said King following an interview with Northam that aired Sunday on “Face the Nation.”
“I talked to black people and white people in Virginia who say — he has a lot of support in the state of Virginia — who say look at his history, what he’s done.”
This is something white supremacists are known for. They prop up a black person (Gayle King) to make it look like Northam is being inclusive. Who was Northam speaking to, African Americans or these big institutions that control our lives? If he really wanted to promote racially equity then why not have his interview on a black platform?
Northam was invited to Trump And The GE with Ralph Baker (Shock Exchange), Senator Maria Chappelle-Nadal and Torian Mitchell (AYCE Network). Trump And The GE is a quarterly speaker series that parses through President Trump’s economy policies. This would have been a prime opportunity for Governor Northam to speak to African Americans via black media. The entire nation would have watched and the conversation would have been powerful, real and organic.
Northam cannot say he didn’t know any better because he was warned:
5 Reasons Ralph Northam Should Attend 'Trump And The GE' – #4 It's Real News https://t.co/PvVCehSQJZ @GovernorVA @jarviscstewart #RalphNortham #BlackFace #JustinFairfax #MarkHerring #TrumpAndTheGE pic.twitter.com/3mUYeuBfKN
— Trump And The Global Economy (@TrumpAndTheGE) February 9, 2019
To promote racial Northam’s big idea was to help a white media outlet make more money. This was as ignorant as wearing blackface.