“When you have a voice, you also have a moral obligation to use that voice for good.”
From an economic perspective, the trickle-down effect proffered by conservative economists has never produced the economic uplift to average Americans as proclaimed. This week, however the inland region has overdosed on the trickle-down effect of another action—overt and unapologetic racism.
Beginning on the day Donald Trump slithered down the elevator at his “golden” New York tower and tossed his hat in the ring for president, he never bothered himself with the “thin veil” many have traditionally used to cover up their racism. Instead, he has barked and jumped incessantly from one racial group to another hurtling the most grievous insults imagined and, in the process, demonstrating to those with similar racist tendencies, that in Trump’s America—overt racism has a green light.
In addition to his own racist comments and history, the president has staffed his cabinet with known racists, appointed an Attorney General with a legendary history of racial animosity, put white supremacists on par with social justice advocates and called African countries “shxt” holes as he simultaneously and unabashedly expressed his preference for European immigrants.
With all of this in mind, it should come as no surprise that we now experience incidents like the 92-year-old Mexican man attacked and beaten with a brick on the Fourth of July for being “Mexican,” or the police being called on an eight-year-old Black girl for selling water, or in San Bernardino County, a noted local Assistant District Attorney feeling free to post horribly racist comments on his Facebook page without any thoughts of potential jeopardy regarding his job.
Although the economic benefits of the president’s massive tax cuts have yet to trickle down, his racist, homophobic and misogynistic fervor has not only trickled down, it has washed across this nation like a raging and polluted river overflowing with hatred and cynicism. And this week, it washed across San Bernardino County exposing the raw ugliness of racist sentiments fostered by one of the area’s most distinguished Assistant District Attorneys.
As the community grapples with this awful reality, I believe it is important that we also acknowledge the “whistle blower” in the DA’s office who found the courage to report the racist Facebook postings of Assistant DA Michael Selyem.
“The strongest asset in the district attorney’s office as prosecutors and staff that work in this office—is that of our ethics and integrity,” San Bernardino County District Attorney Mike Ramos lamented when Selyem’s social media postings became public. Ramos further stated, “The San Bernardino County D.A.’s office does not condone hate, discrimination or incitement of violence.”
I take Ramos at his word. The question is—Will Ramos take appropriate action and move to dismiss Selyem or will he tacitly condone his abhorrent postings by ultimately responding with obfuscation and tepid discipline? The community is watching, DA Ramos, and waiting. . .
Of course, this is just my opinion. I’m keeping it real.