After the first #DemDebate Democrats patted themselves on the back for the lack of racist, sexist, bigoted rhetoric spewed by the candidates, unlike the sh*t shows Republicans have been calling debates.
Still, in both the GOP and Dem debates, the rhetoric didn’t match the optics. As much as the Grand Old Party throws shade at women, Latinos, Blacks, immigrants, and gays, all of those demographics were represented on their debate stage. (Not ‘outing’ you-know-who… just sayin’.)
To the contrary–despite Pres. Obama’s administration being deemed the most diverse in U.S. history–the extent of the Democrats’ onstage diversity appears to be Hillary Clinton being a woman.
(The same Hillary Clinton who slyly passed on saying the words “Black lives matter,” then offered a very “All lives matter’ish” spiel about helping “all Americans” after the question was asked “Do Black lives matter or do all lives matter?”)
Sure, there was certainly more [White] “alliance”–i.e. Bernie Sanders–represented by the Democrats on race, sex, ethnicity, social justice etc, in comparison to the Republicans. Still, I can’t help but raise an eye brow at the relative lack of diversity among those claiming to represent diversity. Hmm… *side eye*
I understand that there’s much more to true diversity than having a variety of bodies and backgrounds on display–Ben Carson is black and rivals Donald Trump as the most vocally, crazily bigoted GOP candidate–but placing historically underrepresented people in positions to represent their own interests matters, too.
It’s too late to diversify the Democrats’ presidential frontrunners now. (The only holdout with a shot at winning is Biden, an old rich White guy.) Which makes it that much more important that these candidates’ feet are held to the fire to explicitly express–without equivocation or quivering–their perspectives and plans for leading the diverse base of underrepresented peoples whose votes they are literally counting on.
If a political candidate panders to one voting block at the detriment of another, chances are that is an indication of how they will preside if elected. To quote work of my brother Usher, minorities have to keep these candidates honest by telling them “Don’t talk about it, be about it… lemme see.” #dontBSyourself