Representative Steve King and the Normalization of White Supremacy
When we look at the rise of Donald Trump, we can't forget that he doesn't live in a vacuum. There are many open and closet white supremacists in government and that has always been the case in U.S. history. It is important that we not get complacent when we think we've made progress, because times like this will prove you wrong.
Representative Steve King is the Congressman for Iowa's 4th Congressional District and on the 12th, he tweeted this...
What we have to come to grips with is that there is an international consensus that is growing around an ideology (I don't want to call it a movement because I don't know how intertwined it is). You have people like Steve King, who isn't a blogger or entertainer...but a politician who goes around in America and to Europe to spread this xenophobic rhetoric. He is not the only one, and this doesn't count the global interactions people have online. There is a link between the rise of far-right fascism in Europe and a similar rise of far-right fascism in America and one of the common threads is xenophobia and racism.
When asked the next day on the 13th about his comments, King doubled down defiantly and implied that he wanted to go back to a time "centuries ago" before inter-marriage when people were more "homogeneous." He tried to speak in code, but it didn't work too well and his attempt to hide his meaning was not missed by me. He later said "wherever the English language has gone, freedom has gone with it" which is a damn lie, but we're dealing with a group of people on the Right that decided a long time ago that they were going to bullshit their ideology....regardless of evidence to back it up. Then he wouldn't come out at the end and say that he believed all people were equal.
There is a term for this psychosis and it's called white supremacy!
Steve King has a history of racism and has echoed this ethno-nationalist rhetoric in the past. He has been making racist comments about Obama since 2008 before Obama was even elected. He remarked that because of his middle name 'Hussein,' that if Obama won "radical Islamists" would be dancing in the streets in greater numbers than they were on 9/11. Steve King was also in the thick of the "Obama is an illegal Kenyan" b.s. racism (along with Donald Trump by the way). In 2014, King said that immigration was turning America into a "third world country." Click the link above, King has a very well-documented history of using white supremacist talking points.
Some Republicans have come out and denounced Steve King's comments, but many haven't. One can only assume (and I don't think it's that far-fetched of an assumption) that there are many Republicans in power who agree with King. As a matter of fact, on the 16th (a day ago as of the writing of this) Steve King said in an interview with The Hill that he was getting pats on the back and that many of his colleagues were giving him king words of encouragement for making the racist comments he made!!
What was once considered a fringe ideology has quickly become mainstream as it once was. While America was asleep at the wheel, hypnotized by the academic mythology of a post-racial society - the Steve Kings, Jeff Sessions, etc of the world sat back and waited for their opportunity. Doing what they could along the way to further their agenda while the world seemingly changed around them - but maybe not so much change after all.
King has found support from David Duke of all people, which is not a surprise. King's rhetoric sounds exactly like what Duke has been saying for many years too, as well as other people that travel in white nationalist circles. Duke took to Twitter and said "GOD BLESS STEVE KING!!!" in all caps just how I wrote it smh.
Steve King Attempts to Incite Race War Between Blacks and Hispanics - References 'Camp of the Saints'
So after Steve King doubled down on Monday the 13th on CNN as I mentioned above, he tripled down again in an interview with a radio station in Iowa. He predicted that a race war between Blacks and Hispanics would happen before White people became a minority in the country! This was before he made a reference about a book written in 1973 called 'Camp of the Saints.' Camp of the Saints is a white supremacist book that basically calls for genocide against immigrants to maintain white racial purity in Europe. He recommends the listeners of the show buy the book and read it!
This is what people have to watch out for and this is why I think having allies in other communities is beneficial and strategic. We can do for self, build for self and have allies at the same time. We should not have this "either/or" mentality because we see here clear as day that white supremacists like Steve King want Black and Brown people to fight each other. The only way they can do this and say it with relative confidence is if they find a way to incite an altercation between our groups. We have to be very careful in these times about the decisions we make and the fact that we are in the midst of political warfare where there are people in power who want to make it harder for your people (or maybe people you know) to live and survive.
We need to stop giving people like Steve King a pass and call them what they are.