It’s clear that presidential hopeful Nikki Haley didn’t learn much from her viral inability to say flat-out that slavery was the cause of the Civil War. Perhaps it’s because she knows her audience only pretends to care about accurate American history when all they really want is the “shining city on the hill” lie that makes America out to be the noble, racially neutral nation that just so happened to be governed solely by white men for most of its existence.
Throughout their campaigns, Haley and South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott, who dropped out of the race last November, ran with the strategy of being the “minorities” in the Republican party who insist that America is not a racist country, despite all of the statistics that indicate otherwise. On Tuesday, Haley took historical revisionism in the name of white fragility to a whole new level by insisting that not only is America not racist, but it was “never” a racist country.
Make It Make Sense @NikkiHaley said…
“We’re NOT A Racist Country, We’ve NEVER Been A Racist Country”
“I Faced Racism Growing Up”…
— ReUPs (@_Re_UPS) January 17, 2024
Haley, of course, made the remark on Fox News, a network where she must have known such a provably false statement would go unchallenged.
Haley’s remarks were in response to MSNBC host Joy Reid’s comments on whether Haley could win the GOP nomination as a woman of color. Haley suggested Reid “lives in a different America than I do,” pointing to her own rise from the daughter of immigrants to governor of South Carolina and ambassador to the United Nations.
“I mean, yes, I’m a brown girl that grew up in a small rural town in South Carolina who became the first female minority governor in history, who became an UN ambassador and who is now running for president. If that’s not the American dream, I don’t know what is,” she said, a day after she came in third in the Iowa Republican caucuses. “You can sit there and give me all the reasons why you think I can’t do this. I will continue to defy everybody on why we can do this. And we will get it done.”
When asked by host Brian Kilmeade if the GOP is a racist party, Haley made a broader point that the US has “never been a racist country.”
“We’re not a racist country, Brian. We’ve never been a racist country,” she said. “Our goal is to make sure that today is better than yesterday. Are we perfect? No. But our goal is to always make sure we try and be more perfect every day that we can.”
First of all, it’s only conservatives of color who appear to believe being the “first minority” to hold any office in a country that has had those offices for centuries is an indication that the country isn’t racist. They just don’t see it. It doesn’t seem to occur to Haley that being “the first female minority governor in history” in a state that has had governors since 1776 flies in the face of any notion that America was “never” racist (and sexist for that matter). When she says, “I will continue to defy everybody on why we can do this,” she’s really saying—unbeknownst to herself—that she’s defying the white power structure that has historically said non-white men “can’t do this.” (That’s also the current popular anti-DEI argument if we’re keeping it a buck.)
As for the idea that America was “never” racist, Haley is displaying pure cognitive dissonance. When Scott repeatedly proclaimed that America is not currently a racist country, he at least gave himself some wiggle room. It was delusional wiggle room, but at the very least, he could point to strides and milestones that Black people have achieved to back the argument, albeit in a simplistic way that lacks nuance or any real application of critical thinking.
Any argument that America was “never” a racist country is so absurd it’s not even worth debating, but, whatever, we’re already here.
The establishment of the U.S.A. was only possible through the near-complete genocide of the non-white race of people who already occupied this land when it was “discovered.” America sustained itself economically for roughly two and a half centuries through the use of legalized forced Black labor. That period was followed by another century of legalized second-class citizenship for Black people and people of color until the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was signed. In other words: America was legally a racist country for the overwhelming majority of its existence. (And it’s not like President Lyndon B. Johnson signed his name on a piece of paper and then, abracadabra, the culture of American racism was instantly eradicated.)
“I know I faced racism when I was growing up,” Haley went on to admit. “But I can tell you, today is a lot better than it was then. Our goal is to lift up everybody. Not go and divide people on race or gender or party or anything else. We’ve had enough of that in America.”
When Haley says “Our goal is to lift up everybody,” who is she talking about exactly? Certainly not her fellow Republicans—the people who routinely express their contempt for Democrats, “leftists,” immigrants, Black Lives Matter advocates (and/or Black lives in general), Muslims, the LGBTQ community, feminists, critical race theorists, pro-choice advocates, and, of course, the ubiquitous “woke.”
Hell, if Haley was willing to be honest, she would admit that she’s still facing racism from her own party. Last year, right-wing sweetheart Ann Coulter brazenly told Haley to “go back to your own country,” despite her being born in Bamberg, South Carolina.
In fact, on the same day Haley declared America was “never” racist, Donald Trump attacked her by emphasizing her foreign-sounding first name, Nimarata, much like he consistently emphasized Barack Obama’s middle name, Hussein, as a dog-whistly way of connecting him to Islamic terrorism. And Trump’s attack on Haley came after he tried to recycle his demonstrably racist “birther” campaign against Obama by cosigning a post that falsely claimed Haley was ineligible to run for president because her parents were not US citizens at the time of her birth, which only shows that Trump doesn’t understand the Constitution and that he’s still adhering to racist nonsense to discredit non-white politicians.
But, whatever, he’s only the former president and Republican frontrunner in a totally non-racist country, amirite?
The post Op-Ed: Nikki Haley Has Reached A New Level Of Delusion By Claiming America Was ‘Never’ A Racist Country appeared first on NewsOne.