Kamala Harris on CNN, A Black Female Perspective

Yesterday, YouTube alerted me to Kamala Harris’s most recent interview with CNN interviewer Dana Bush. Bush interviewed  Harris with an overt chip on her shoulder that worked in Kamala Harris’ favor. Bush’s disposition made Harris appear more friendly and kind in the glare of Bush’s physical manifestation of a collective white female fury that a woman of color warms a seat to which they have yet to sit. The interview, though brief, proved quite telling and engenders those in an oppressive caste to implement a critical gaze toward representation and leadership.

The interview, in many ways, elucidated the obvious: that true change will never come from within an anti-black system. Similarly, the interview betrays the power of voting as bamboozling the black voter to think that the ballot is somehow stronger than the bullets shot in our direction, or that they both do not originate from the same source. 

Nevertheless, here are six resonant moments from the interview: 

  1. The interview took place on the famous Howard University campus, featured footage from the yard. The interview itself was filmed at the historical Founders Library. Though the featured footage was nothing short of beautiful, the footage illuminates the Biden-Harris campaign as boundlessly rooted in optics. Specifically, the campaign employs optics to cement Harris as black and embedded in the roots of black culture. This behavior not only appears performative, as Howard is not only the backdrop in a democratic diorama, but a stage for a production in which “we” (the black collective) are played by Kamala Harris (Double meaning intended). It was also quite odd that though set on the hilltop, Harris discussed the influence of the non-black people in her life, from her Indian mother to her white husband and white step-children. 

2. The moment most resonant in the media are Kamala Harris’s comments about Donald Trump’s detachment from reality. She contended that there were two justice systems, a point that appears to confront racial contentions in America; however, this response proves an escape route. There is only one system: the system of white supremacy. This system, fueled by a false binary opposition, produces two routes, but they all lead to racism. 

Looking at the racial epidemic as engendering social and systemic divergence presents the solution as merely a mergence where faction “b” assures the rights and liberties of faction “a.” This is precisely what history evidences with addendums to legislature  that merely consummates black as America’s afterthought. To call the system what it is, is to betray the daunting task of fixing an entire system, not parts, or routes, of it. Thus, this response betrays what many Biden-Harris adversaries observed from the beginning-the party’s espousal to work within a broken system. This formula, of course, will not fix the systemic issues that hinder the national trajectory of blacks in America. 

3. Harris did have a very strong comments when speaking about the suburbs. Harris noted that the suburbs lack aggressive policing but have better funded schools. The notion to invest in black education and not black murder promises a gain for the black collective. Now, “education,” Dr. Bobby Wright taught us, is not be confused with “training,” but that’s a topic for another post. Nevertheless, despite this strong and true statement, it is unlikely that the Biden-Harris will implement any changes to alter the over-policing and underfunding of non-white communities. This reality is perhaps best delineated by my final point. 

4. The most telling, and albeit irredeemable, moment from the interview came when Bush asked Harris about Jacob Blake. Bush asked Harris if she “ would have the cops who shot Jacob Blake arrested,” given her experience as an Attorney General. Harris replied “from what she knows,” she would have the cops arrested, but underscored that she trusts the process and that prosecutors must examine all evidence. The response affords the cops an undeserving wiggle room and delineates a dichotomy between what the Biden-Harris campaign says and what they think and plan and do. There is no amount of information that vindicates the cops from the assassination attempt cast onto Jacob Blake. The mere suggestion betrays Harris as untrustworthy and unfeeling to the trauma of blackness in America. This suggestion is unforgivable. 

What Harris displayed here, constitutes what many call fence-riding, or playing both sides; there is, however, only one side. You are either for black empowerment and systemic franchisement for black people or not. You either believe the police remain intractably wrong in the assassinations they intentionally implement in black communities or you do not. You either subscribe to white supremacist ideology, or encompass a rare, free cognitive state.

Harris displays the cognitive bondage to the forces that personify justice in America. It is only the system of white supremacy that equates bullet-ridden black bodies with justice, and that is the train Kamala Harris rides.  

To consider these points alongside the chorus of Trump adversaries who say “it doesn’t matter” what Biden-Harris did and doesn’t matter what they say, this interview illuminates that for those who desire true change; the Biden-Harris past presently manifests in what they say, and what they say foreshadows what they’ll do if elected. Being “anti” Trump is the sole and strongest stance that the democratic party hones, yet for the black collective, despite the media pandering to the contrary, anti-Trump does not equate to pro-blackness. Being against white people only maintains white centrality, and keeps the public focused on slaying one dragon while nurturing another.

Furthermore, although seated at the Mecca and reminiscing about old times, Harris’ CNN interview visually encompasses the reality of what America proposes as the best case scenario for the African in America: a polished position in the background. 

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