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We’re not Giving Up Anything, and We’re Not Going Anywhere

Donald Trump and his backwards leaning group of supporters need to know, that despite the anxiety he has inspired in all of the “othered” groups in America, including Muslims, immigrants and anyone else different from poor uneducated whites, we African Americans are not giving up anything, and we’re not going anywhere.

Thanks First Lady, Michelle Obama for reminding them that we built the White House, and that is only a symbol of the contribution we have made intellectually, cultural, economically and socially to America. In fact, my ancestors, both Muslim and Africans were here at least as early as 1843, although Trump’s family itself were later comers, arriving here from the south-western part of Germany in 1885.

I doubt also that his family endured the “investment” of unpaid labor, blood, sweat, tears and persecution that mine did. So the point is that we’re not giving up anything and we’re not going anywhere. We have a much stronger claim to this country than he has and many of the late arrivals that are supporting him now.

And that greatness that he claims he’s trying to get back to again, came about from our sacrifice. US Representative and Civil Rights leader, John Robert Lewis, pointing to his own contributions to Americas’ claim of greatness, said, “I was beaten, my skull was fractured, & I was arrested more than 40 times so each and every one of us can register to vote.” And he reminded us that the struggle was not over. “Do your part” he urged. Lewis asked the officer who was beating him, “Why are you doing this?” The officer replied, “I HAVE to beat you. If I DON’T beat you, then it means NOTHING for me to be white.” That’s the America we left behind and we’re not giving up any of those hard earned rights. We’re not going backwards not one day.

Now Donald Trump is visiting Louisiana, no doubt trying to present a kindler gentler image by showing empathy for flood victims, most of whom are probably African Americans. Is he now saying that those Black Lives Matter? As if that is going to make us forget his claim that the Black Lives Matter movement has helped instigate the recent killings of police officers, and his suggestion that he might direct his future attorney general to investigate the civil rights activist group. It’s reminiscent of the charges made against Dr. King and the Civil Rights movement as being Communists—anything demonized, anything negative, anything “other” than “us.”

As a Muslim, where is that he would send me back home to? What is he going to force me to believe in order to stay here in America? He’s the one that should be “vetted” to see if he holds American ideals. That’s why he was so offended by the question posed by Khizr Khan, the father of a soldier killed in Iraq: “Have you even read the United States Constitution?”

Even as a Muslim I have a stronger claim to be here and to stay here than he does. We were here even before the recent influx of immigrant Muslims. Khaled A. Beydoun, reported in The Washington Post, August 18, 2016, Before 1965, the Muslim American population was overwhelmingly composed of native-born African Americans.” In addition, we should consider that many of the Muslims seeking admittance here are from places where we have destroyed their countries and their homes with our bombs and drones.

So no one is going to be fooled by any pivots to present a new more “politically correct” image. We know who you are now and we know what you represent. But, he is not as scary to me as are the followers and supporters of his that don’t see the bigotry, racism, and even mental illness of his positions. What they all should know is that we’re not going back, we’re not giving up anything, and we’re not going anywhere. We will be the last man standing here.


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