The Katrina Hurricane has revealed George Bush’s racism in an ugly way. While Bush did not dress up in a white robe and burn a cross, he managed, by his bungling of the Katrina crisis, to reveal his racism without ever uttering a racist slur or saying a bad work about Blacks.
Bush did so by promoting policies that favored wealthlier White people over less-wealthy Black people. He also showed his racism by looking the other way as others, including his own mother, revealed their stereotypes of Black people.
Down below, I will give 10 pieces of evidence as to why Bush is being racist. I cannot point to a single one of these instances and say that Bush is racist. But, put together, these instances show a pattern of racism in the Bush administration. And incidentally, this is one more reason why we should not trust John Roberts to protect our hard-wom racial freedoms over the last 40 years.
The response to Katrina versus the response to last year’s Florida hurricanes.
Last year, the response to the Florida hurricanes was much better than the response to Katrina. Why? I suggest it was because the areas hit were Whiter than New Orleans, for one reason. In fact, most left-wing bloggers couldn’t wait for the hurricanes to get off the front pages so that they could go back to bashing George Bush.
The attitudes towards the poor in 2004 vs. Katrina.
Last year, nobody was blaming the poor for being poor or not being able to evacuate. Why? Does this mean that the Bush administration puts on one face to people when they are trying to get elected, like a whitened sepulchre?
The stereotypes of looters versus scavengers.
Many people, including some of the media, called Blacks looters and Whites scavengers. What Bush didn’t do is as important as what he did do. He did absolutely nothing to stop these stereotypes or to point out that looting was wrong, regardless of race.
The UN Human Development Report
The UN Human Development Report, which normally focuses on 3rd-world countries, pointed to areas in the US under poverty and accused the Bush administration of allowing parts of the country to exist in third-world conditions. Many such places are Black.
Barbara Bush’s remark that so many were poor anyway appealed to stereotypes that Blacks were a bunch of welfare queens who depended on government handouts.
However, if the right-wingers were so interested in getting people off of welfare rolls, then they would support the doubling of the minimum wage, meaning low-income Blacks could make more off work than they would welfare.
Since they oppose a minimum wage increase, that suggests they are interested in controlling Black people. And Bush did nothing to correct his mother’s ghoulish stereotype.
Smirking Chimp reported that a blogger in David Horowitz’s magazine called for civil war against “traitors who have hated America for the last 40 years.” This implies the supporters for the Civil Rights Movement.
Bush did nothing to admonish this right-wing hate organ.
The tax cuts and the Iraq War
The tax cuts and the Iraq War had a disproportionatly negative effect on race. Most of the main beneficiaries were White. Part of the reason the New Orleans levees were not funded adequately was because the funds Bush cut went to fuel his tax cuts and the Iraq War. New Orleans is two-thirds Black.
Tax cuts (cont’d)
The tax cuts created a growing gap between wealthier Whites and less wealthy Blacks, meaning conditions were created in which Whites could more likely escape in their cars, while Blacks were less likely to be able to escape even through public transportation.
Gang violence and rape
One of the most common stereotypes people have of Blacks is associating them when gangs and rape. This led to wild rumors of gang violence and rape at the New Orleans Convention Center.
The notorious Susan Smith case, in which Smith claimed three Black men had kidnapped and drowned her children when she did it herself is another illustration of that stereotype.
I was working on a Habitat for Humanity house once, and this kid who had to do community service work came up to us and glibly told stories about his life in the gangs and the violence between the Bloods and the Crips. Before you read on, close your eyes and take a guess at what race he was. Then read below:
He was White.
Furthermore, the September 6th Guardian totally debunked these stories, saying there were hardly any confirmed reports of rape, shootings, or violence at the Convention Center.
The reports reflect much more on our society than they did on the people at the Convention Center, whose conduct in the face of death was outstanding. There were several people who took charge of the whole group and established order there. They made sure that the oldest and weakest got on to the buses first.
I have no idea who these men and women were. But their conduct in the face of death was outstanding.
Bush did absolutely nothing to stop people from spreading these false rumors about the Convention Center rapes and shootings.
Our ability to coordinate relief efforts elsewhere
We were able to coordinate tsunami relief efforts much better, with far fewer complaints than for Katrina. If there wasn’t race involved, then why can we coordinate relief efforts around the world better than we can here? In fact, we did a much better job of saving lives and coordinating relief efforts 100 years ago in San Francisco than we did this year.
Put together, these instances show a systematic pattern of racism within the Bush administration. While overt racism is dead and gone, racist attitudes and policies are still alive and well within 21st-century America today. We must address and discuss these attutides if we are to work for racial equality.