Welcome to fear, white guys.
Come on in, the water sucks.
Ask just about every black man in America.
From stop-and-frisk to driving while black to wrongful murder convictions, African American men have always endured the suspicion that President Trump now fears on behalf of all men.
“When you are guilty until proven innocent, it’s just not supposed to be that way,” Trump said last week. “That’s a very dangerous standard for the country.”
That’s what all the kneeling at football games is about, remember?
Those men are kneeling to protest the black lives lost because of false accusations and a presumption of guilt.
But Trump isn’t talking about Walter Scott or Tamir Rice or Philando Castile — all shot and killed by police without cause. He’s talking about men like him — party guys who are vulnerable to allegations of sexual assault. In fact, Trump has been accused of sexual misconduct by more than a dozen women and branded all of them liars.
Then he mocked Christine Blasey Ford, who accused Brett M. Kavanaugh of trying to rape her when they were teenagers — and then watched him get confirmed as a Supreme Court justice anyway.
Trump — and half the Senate — not only ignored her testimony, but Trump also took it a step further Monday, calling the allegations a “hoax.”
He said it was “all made up, it was fabricated, and it’s a disgrace.”
So, now white men who haven’t had to worry about being searched because of a busted taillight or accused of shoplifting while browsing in a store are all worked up about being falsely accused of rape.
How awful it would be to have someone not believe them as they professed their innocence. How messed up would it be if they were arrested. It was a new feeling for many of them, enraging, even scary.
And if it wasn’t the men exploring this new feeling of potential victimhood, it was the mothers of white boys who said they’re worried about their sons or husbands being falsely accused.
I know some moms of black boys who can help them with the conversations they are having with their sons.
Keep your hands on the steering wheel. Don’t wear your hood up. Keep your hands out of your pockets. When you’re black, the stakes of being falsely accused are terrifying.
If he were still alive, John Crawford III could explain the consequences when someone doubted he was buying a BB gun at an Ohio Walmart. Philando Castile could describe what happened when an officer refused to believe he had a permit for the gun in his glove box. Emmett Till could recount the horrifying result when he was falsely accused of flirting with a white woman at the age of 14.
But they were all executed, following those false accusations.
Of course, that’s not what the men afraid of the #MeToo movement are talking about. They’re just worried they’ll lose their jobs, get arrested or even jailed.
This is also something black men are familiar with.
A new report on exonerations concluded that African Americans were wrongfully convicted at an alarming rate. The National Registry of Exonerations, a joint project among the University of California at Irvine, the University of Michigan Law School and the Michigan State University College of Law showed that 47 percent of the people who were exonerated were black. Remember, just 14 percent of the U.S. population is black.
But really, there’s not a lot to worry about if you’re a young man accused of rape. The numbers are in your favor.
Fewer than 1 percent of all rape cases end with a felony conviction. And even then, some don’t go to jail. Only 0.6 percent end up behind bars, according to an analysis of federal crime statistics done by the Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network.
Whether or not you really did it, you probably won’t be convicted, and it’s really unlikely you’ll go to jail. You may even make it to the White House. Or the Supreme Court.
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