Disclaimer, before the first caucus was held in Iowa, I financially supported Senator Sanders. I chose to feel the Bern before it was hip, mainly because I also self-identify as a democratic socialist. And while I was concerned about his lack of accomplishments while serving as Senator, I felt; nonetheless, he could set a more leftist tone then the centrist administration of Obama. But now, as we approach the last primaries to be held, I confess I am losing the Bern, not so much because of the candidate, but because of the glaring white privilege and sense of entitlement emulating from Sanders’ campaign and followers.
Liberal racism is just as damning as the racism normatively exhibited by conservatives. In fact, I rather hear why I need to go back to where I belong from conservative racists than the assurance from liberal racists who are quick to tell me “they get it,” while remaining complicit with the goals and objectives of conservatives. Allow me to illustrate two examples of the racism being exhibited by the Bernie Bros.
First – Bernie followers’ sense of entitlement. Face it, my candidate will lose the Democratic nomination, not because the system was rigged or stolen, but because the process is so byzantine that the one (in this case Clinton) who masters its procedures can game the system to her or his advantage. No doubt, Clinton, the political animal did this. But even if she didn’t, she still would have won because she received more votes than Sanders. As of Memorial Day weekend, Clinton garnered 12,989,134 votes to Sanders’ 9,957,889. She is winning by 3,031,245 votes. Clinton will win the nomination not because she stole it, but because she simply won more votes. Period.
One main reason she did was because Sanders failed, repeatedly, to gain the support from two main constituencies, Blacks and Latinxs. Even though my Latina wife made herself available to the campaign, she never was asked to serve (remember – we live in a swing state). So it is somewhat bothersome, even though I too support Sanders, to hear the entitlement of whites who demand disregarding the will of the majority of the voters, of which many were Black and Latinx, so that their candidate can obtain the nomination. Again, the will of Latinx and Black voters are being disregarded to the sake of young white liberals’ will. Explain to me how this is different from when Republicans suppress our votes through voter id legislation?
Second – Bernie followers’ sense of privilege. Bernie or Bust! Never Hillary! If not Bernie, I’m voting for Trump! Such phrases which are bantered around show the depth of liberal whites’ privilege. Fact – Trump is a racist (They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists). Fact – Trump is an Islamophobic (a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country’s representatives can figure out what is going on). Fact – a Trump presidency will be damning to people of color and Muslims. As bad as Trump may be for white liberals if elected, his administration will be deadly for the rest of non-white, non-Christian America. Because white folk safety and security is not threatened, they have the privilege of not needing to vote to defeat him.
Let’s be clear. I am not a Clinton fan. Her commitment to global neoliberal trade policies and the shift of many neoconservatives to her camp is deeply troublesome to me. Nevertheless, a Trump administration will move this country to a more racist future, a reality white liberals can shed tears over, but because they have no skin in the game, they can pick up their marbles and head home if Sanders doesn’t get the nomination.
On a side note, another indication of white privilege is how some are willing to use the same violent intolerant tactics normative at Trump rallies. Yes, throwing eggs at a person is an act of violence and intimidation. And while I appreciate Sander condemning such actions; nevertheless, the fact that a tendency toward violence exists among some supporters indicates a sense of an unacceptable righteous indignation. Debates are won through discussion, not intimation, not character assassination, and not by scaring people to garner votes.
I truly wish Sanders wins the last primaries by landslides with over 3,031,245 votes so as to clinch the nomination. Unfortunately, the math is not there. So I will mourn what could have been and vote for the person that will cause the least damage for Americans who live on the margins of whites and Christians. So – will you stand with me in solidarity with the “least of these”?