The U.S. president on Jan. 11 insulted Central Americans, Haitians and Africans with disgusting remarks he subsequently denied. Reacting to his words, the New York Times wrote in a Jan. 13 editorial: “The U.S. president is a racist. … He is also a liar.”
That’s a unique Times’ appraisal of a sitting president.
With that part of the Times editorial, Workers World concurs.
But what this media voice and strategist for the ruling class of millionaires and billionaires fails to point out is their class’s responsibility for putting and keeping this lying, racist chief executive in office.
Trump is from and of the ruling class. He is a New York-based billionaire and reality-show host who parlayed his real-estate inheritance into a midsized fortune — and his notoriety into a national election victory. Trump serves ruling-class interests.
And whatever the bourgeoise thinks of Trump’s diplomatic skills, most of the ruling class love what he’s doing for them.
Fred Goldstein pointed out why in the Jan. 11 issue of Workers World: “Trump is showering the bosses and bankers with riches — billions in tax cuts, gas and oil drilling rights, mining rights on public lands, destruction of environmental regulations, rollbacks of banking regulations and labor protections, etc.”
The ruling-class strategists who write Times editorials take a long-term view of Trump’s blatant racism and diplomatic gaffes. Eyeing the harm he’s doing, they want to keep him on a short leash or maybe even dump him.
But the bulk of the wealthy class and its corporate managers consider Trump’s administration to be the gift that keeps on giving — to them.
The entire ruling class is guilty of Trump’s crimes. By word and deed, the president admits openly what the ruling class usually tries to cover up: The U.S. capitalists and their paid-for political servants represent a system that uses racism in order to divide the workers and extract superprofits from the oppressed all over the world. They have done that since colonial slaveholders plundered Native lands while enslaving kidnapped Africans.
That Trump is so blatant is a double-edged sword. On one side, his rants open up space on the right for the racist scum of society to mobilize.
This is a danger all anti-fascists must take seriously.
On the other side, Trump jolts into motion large sectors of society, many who were apathetic before his election but are angered or frightened by what he threatens. This opens a space on the left.
This is an opportunity all revolutionaries must also take seriously.
Let’s fill that space — and keep the hand-wringing capitalist liberals out. Those political actors are a continuation of Democratic Party politicians like Bill Clinton, who forced so many women and their children into abject poverty by ending welfare — and did so by using racism to attack life-saving welfare benefits.
Let’s take the opportunity to swing into action, to “Do it like Durham” — and emulate the people who toppled the Confederate statue in North Carolina.
Only the struggles of revolutionaries and progressives will bring down racism. Take advantage of the growing hostility to Trumpism and use it to open a struggle against the entire ruling class — which chose Trump as their shithead in chief.