FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

All Black Lives Will Never Matter for Clinton and Trump

When race was discussed in last night’s presidential debate, Trump pointed to his Palm Beach club, Mar-a-Lago, as evidence of his anti-racism. While other clubs their denied membership to blacks, Trump’s club accepted them.

As for Clinton, she spoke of countering the prison industrial complex, building trust between black communities and police officers, and acknowledging that black men, too, have rights.

Trump came back at Clinton with a quip about her past statements (“super predator”) and proposed that political expediency, as opposed to growing a heart (a la the Grinch), is what’s throwing Clinton into the throes of Black Lives Matter and other such activist groups.

In addition to the Black Lives Matter moms, Clinton has the support of Barack Obama, Beyonce, Kerry Washington, and even Ja Rule. All booster Clinton’s image as more anti-racist than Trump. But whether it’s Clinton, Trump, Obama, Bush, or whoever, no president of America will ever truly value all black lives.

American and capitalism are one in the same. A sharpe summation of capitalism’s lethal relationship to race comes from writer and academic Yasmin Nair. In her essay in False Choices: The Faux Feminism Hillary Rodham Clinton, Nair writes, “Capital flows unimpeded while the surplus bodies, the most marginal and disposable that enable its movements, are scrutinized, surveilled, and ultimately brutalized into the ever-expanding prison industrial complex.”

Neither Clinton nor Trump will change the way “capital flows.” Both espouse a kind of Palm Beach diversity, where Black Lives Matter if that life is wealthy and generates profits for the corporations that help govern America.

So Beyonce’s life matters due to her relationships with slave-drivers such as H&M and Pepsi. As for Beyonce’s husband (for now), Jay-Z, his life matters due to his relationship with gentrifying giants such as the Barclays Center. Of course, Barack Obama’s life matters: he brought back the banks (thereby saving capitalism… yippee!)

It seem that whenever black people are praised, they are inevitably the black people that have transformed their “marginal,” “disposable,” “surplus body” into an indispensable source of capitalism.

I really like ballet, so I recently watched A Ballerina’s Tale, the documentary on American Ballet Theatre’s first black principal dancer, Misty Copeland. In the movie, Copeland’s manager, Gilda Squire, tells how Copeland, before she was named a principal, had already won due to endorsements deal with corporations like Under Armour and Coach.

With B, Jay, Barack, and Misty, black success, empowerment, hope (or whatever pseudo “progressive” term comes to mind) are synonymous with integration into elitist capitalism. It’s a Palm Beach anti-racism. If you have the wealth, you’re in (three cheers for tolerance!). But if you have to work a day shift at Whole Foods and a night shift at CVS  and still can’t afford rent or food for your kids, then you’re fucked, and neither Trump nor Clinton will change the system that’s fucking you.

Seth Oelbaum is a graduate of the University of Notre Dame, where he studied creative writing and literature. For the past three years, he was Managing Editor at StyleLikeU, an alternative fashion organization whose viral videos have lead to worldwide press coverage and a global movement.
More articles by:

November 15, 2018
Kenneth Surin
Ukania: the Land Where the Queen’s Son Has His Shoelaces Ironed by His Valet
Evaggelos Vallianatos
Spraying Poisons, Chasing Ghosts
Anthony DiMaggio
In the Wake of the Blue Wave: the Midterms, Recounts, and the Future of Progressive Politics
Christopher Ketcham
Build in a Fire Plain, Get What You Deserve
Meena Miriam Yust
Today It’s Treasure Island, Tomorrow Your Neighborhood Store: Could Local Currencies Help?
Karl Grossman
Climate of Rage
Walter Clemens
How Two Demagogues Inspired Their Followers
Brandon Lee
Radical Idealism: Jesus and the Radical Tradition
Kim C. Domenico
An Anarchist Uprising Against the Liberal Ego
Elliot Sperber
Pythagoras in Queens
November 14, 2018
Charles Pierson
Unstoppable: The Keystone XL Oil Pipeline and NAFTA
Sam Bahour
Israel’s Mockery of Security: 101 Actions Israel Could Take
Cesar Chelala
How a Bad Environment Impacts Children’s Health
George Ochenski
What Tester’s Win Means
Louisa Willcox
Saving Romania’s Brown Bears, Sharing Lessons About Coxistence, Conservation
George Wuerthner
Alternatives to Wilderness?
Robert Fisk
Izzeldin Abuelaish’s Three Daughters were Killed in Gaza, But He Still Clings to Hope for the Middle East
Dennis Morgan
For What?
Dana E. Abizaid
The Government is Our Teacher
Bill Martin
The Trump Experiment: Liberals and Leftists Unhinged and Around the Bend
Rivera Sun
After the Vote: An Essay of the Man from the North
Jamie McConnell
Allowing Asbestos to Continue Killing
Thomas Knapp
Talkin’ Jim Acosta Hard Pass Blues: Is White House Press Access a Constitutional Right?
Bill Glahn
Snow Day
November 13, 2018
Patrick Cockburn
The Midterm Results are Challenging Racism in America in Unexpected Ways
Victor Grossman
Germany on a Political Seesaw
Cillian Doyle
Fictitious Assets, Hidden Losses and the Collapse of MDM Bank
Lauren Smith
Amnesia and Impunity Reign: Wall Street Celebrates Halliburton’s 100th Anniversary
Joe Emersberger
Moreno’s Neoliberal Restoration Proceeds in Ecuador
Carol Dansereau
Climate and the Infernal Blue Wave: Straight Talk About Saving Humanity
Dave Lindorff
Hey Right Wingers! Signatures Change over Time
Dan Corjescu
Poetry and Barbarism: Adorno’s Challenge
Patrick Bond
Mining Conflicts Multiply, as Critics of ‘Extractivism’ Gather in Johannesburg
Ed Meek
The Kavanaugh Hearings: Text and Subtext
Binoy Kampmark
Concepts of Nonsense: Australian Soft Power
November 12, 2018
Kerron Ó Luain
Poppy Fascism and the English Education System
Conn Hallinan
Nuclear Treaties: Unwrapping Armageddon
Robert Hunziker
Tropical Trump Declares War on Amazonia
John W. Whitehead
Badge of Shame: the Government’s War on Military Veterans
Will Griffin
Military “Service” Serves the Ruling Class
John Eskow
Harold Pinter’s America: Hard Truths and Easy Targets
Rob Okun
Activists Looking Beyond Midterm Elections
Binoy Kampmark
Mid-Term Divisions: The Trump Take
Dean Baker
Short-Term Health Insurance Plans Destroy Insurance Pools
George Wuerthner
Saving the Buffalohorn/Porcupine: the Lamar Valley of the Gallatin Range
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail