Donald Trump has selected Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions to be the United States Attorney General. Now, you might be asking yourself, “Who the hell is Jeff Sessions?” Well, I’m glad you asked…
Jefferson Beauregard “Jeff” Sessions III. That’s… his actual name. In 1986, when he was nominated by Ronald Reagan to be a Federal Judge, the Senate Judiciary Committee rejected his nomination because of multiple allegations of racism. Here are a few of the highlights of Jeff Sessions’ history of racism:
- He called a white civil rights attorney working with black clients a “disgrace to his race.”
- He “joked” with a black attorney that the only problem he had with the Ku Klux Klan was the fact that they smoked marijuana… He made that statement in reference to a case where a Klan member had hung a black man.
- He called that same attorney “Boy” on multiple occasions, and used the word the N-word to refer to a black man he considered a political enemy.
- He called the NAACP and the ACLU (as well as the Southern Christian Leadership Conference) “Un-American” and “communist-inspired,” and he accused them of trying to “force civil rights down the throats of people who were trying to put problems behind them.”
I can’t post all of the pieces of evidence showing Jeff Sessions’ history of racism here, but you can CLICK HERE to see an article with many pieces of evidence, including minutes from the Judiciary Committee’s hearing and the testimony of people who worked with him. Or you could just research it yourself. Google “Jeff Sessions” and “Racism,” and look for articles that have actual evidence. And links to reputable news sources.
After his racism disqualified him from his federal appointment (at that time, only the second time in 50 years the Senate had rejected an appointment), apparently the people of Alabama didn’t think those bullet points were that big of a deal, because they elected him to be a Senator. And Senators in Alabama don’t change very often–He has been in office for 20 years, and he is still the junior Senator. Because despite their calls for “draining the swamp,” republicans keep reelecting the incumbents over and over again. And now Donald Trump has asked him to be the Attorney General.
Most people don’t even know what the Attorney General does. The AG is basically the chief law enforcement officer, the chief lawyer for the United States Government, and the head of the Department of Justice. This is a very big job. And it has very big ramifications for how law enforcement responds to issues of civil rights. Look it up. It is a BIG. DEAL. As Attorney General, Eric Holder investigated use of force by police, financial regulations, voter ID laws, environmental policy (Sessions is a climate change sceptic), and a host of other Constitutional rights that the AG can decide whether or not to focus on. The implications of a person of Jeff Sessions’ character holding that position are–to use a term made popular by a dumpster fire and a national disgrace–YUGE.
So please listen–During his candidacy, Trump said so many outrageously offensive things and completely false things that it overwhelmed anyone’s ability to adequately respond to them… It was basically a war of attrition with horrifying and untrue statements. By the time people could attempt to respond to something awful he had said (and inform people as to why it was dangerous or wildly offensive or false), he would have already said ANOTHER awful thing that was dangerous or wildly offensive or false. Now it seems Trump is applying the same strategy with his Cabinet appointees. A few days after naming Alt Right leader and Breitbart head Steve Bannon as his Chief Strategist, he taps Jeff-Fucking-Sessions as his pick for Attorney General. And the thing is, I don’t have time to go into all of the many, many reasons why picking avowed white nationalist Steve Bannon is uniquely horrifying (though, if the words “avowed white nationalist” aren’t enough for some reason, his own wife has accused him of being anti-semitic). And just when people are trying to get organized around opposition to Steve Bannon, Trump names ANOTHER shit show as one of his top Cabinet positions–A name that 95% of the people in this country don’t recognize. And then, as people work to educate the citizens about how disqualified and dangerous Jeff Sessions is, he’ll throw out yet another name… And people will slip through. Already people are forgetting about Steve Bannon. How are people supposed to respond to such a steady stream of disappointment? Honestly, it is so overwhelming that it makes me want to shut my computer, lie in bed, and just cry…
But here is an important difference between the position of Chief Strategist and the position of Attorney General: Attorney General is subject to Congressional approval. And that is where YOU can come in. That is where YOU HAVE THE POWER TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE. I read an article recently that said phone calls are the most effective way of getting a message through to your elected representative… That emails and letters can be largely ignored, but PHONE CALLS have to be answered and dealt with by staffers. So here is what I want you to do.
- Take a deep breath. It’s going to be okay. It’s a scary time, but maybe this will be the sort of scare that will WAKE PEOPLE UP.
- Realize that even with this steady stream of garbage our new president elect is throwing at us, WE ARE NOT POWERLESS. I might be powerless… You might be powerless… But WE are NOT powerless!
- CLICK RIGHT HERE to find out the telephone numbers of your elected representatives. You just need to put in your Zip Code, and it will give you the names and numbers of all your people.
- Take a couple minutes out of your day and CALL THEM. Be firm and in control and not mean. Tell them you are NOT okay with a person like Jeff Sessions being the Attorney General. Tell them you will put whatever energy you have into electing someone different if they approve him. If you are a Trump supporter, let them know that nominating white supremacists for Cabinet positions is NOT what you voted for.
- Tell a friend. Share this post. Encourage the people in your sphere of influence to call their representatives as well. Don’t let yourself be overwhelmed by the garbage in the world… Look for all of the places of love and hope and light.
At a time when only the most overtly racist white supremacists were supporting Trump, Jeff Sessions was one of the first in line. And now, he–and people like Steve Bannon–are being rewarded with Cabinet positions. At a time like this–a time of elevated attacks that are racially and religiously motivated–we cannot have a person with a history of racism being the Chief Law Enforcement Officer in the land. This is the exact opposite of saying “Black Lives Matter.” If Trump wants to have a white supremacist as his Chief Strategist, realistically there is nothing we can do to stop him… I doubt that appealing to a narcissist’s “sense of right and wrong” will have much of an influence. But we CAN stop him from making a man with a long history of racism the Attorney General of the United States of America. We HAVE to. We need to FLOOD the phone lines of our lawmakers and representatives with calls voicing our disapproval of this choice. Please. PLEASE. PLEASE help me keep this man from becoming Attorney General.
If you love this blog, SUPPORT IT. Boost it on PayPal. Share it! Help me get the word out… You can also follow me on Twitter and Facebook. Also, thank you to my newest Patron, Karla Underwood. WE ARE NOT POWERLESS!
As Trump starts building his cabinet and advisors, we see that his biases and priorities are exactly where he placed them during the campaign. I’m not surprised by this, I don’t know why anyone else should be either. Either this is what America wants (we *did* elect him) or people weren’t listening during the campaign (which is hard to believe). I can’t get over my sinking feeling of depression because I think the core tenets of his early picks exactly matches what our citizens want.
Yeah… That’s a distinct possibility. Let’s hope the majority of people are disgusted by this stuff.
But regardless, our response is the same. Make some noise (by calling our reps), call out hatred and bigotry when we see it, and love our enemies.
I am disheartened.
That’s good. That means you have a heart…
The English author George Monbiot has a good essay in which he calls Trump “this hollow man, this empty vessel waiting to be filled by those who know what they want.” He’s nailed it: Trump, who has no principles, is happily letting himself be co-opted by some seriously malevolent people. Thank you for the reminder that we have a say about who gets to be on the cabinet. One voice isn’t much, but many voices can make a mighty chorus.
I like you, Larry.
Question: This may seem uninformed but do you call both the representatives now and the ones that are coming in? I know some of my representatives have been voted out.
Why didn’t you mention what he said or did about Rosa Parks?
You sir have become the embodiment of hypocricy. I used to enjoy your articles in the past even when i disagreed with your views. But the last few were nothing but BS, lies and childish nonesense.
Where do you see hypocrisy coming from me? And where have I lied?
Also, anyone can say nice things about Rosa Parks. If Jeff Sessions would have been AG when Rosa Parks refused to move to the back of the bus, he would have thrown the book at her.
I’m not writing so that you will agree with me, HS. Or even so that you “enjoy” my articles. I am trying as hard as I can to be true to myself, and express my feelings in an honest way.
Please don’t call me a liar without backing it up. If you prove where I have lied, I will gladly change it and print an apology.
Sessions is a war criminal on the war on drugs. This bigoted and senile tyrant should not hold any position of responsibility. I will oppose this vile person every step of the way.
JUST SAY NO TO JEFF SESSIONS;
Chris, I would not go so far as to say you have lied, but I would suggest that you consider that you might be in an echo chamber and have come to be swayed by the caricature that has been created about Trump and his appointments. A good excercise in critical thinking is to challenge our beliefs. If we always look at something from the same perspective our knowledge of that said thing will not increase. A great example of this that is an interesting 10 minutes is a TED talk posted Friday about perspectives in mathematics.
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The information I have been looking for is which states have republican senators who may fight back against his appointment. For those of us who live in democratic states like Massachusetts we are covered in our representation. However, if we could start a grassroots campaign to reach out to citizens in states that may help influence their senators through phone calls- try to mobilize troops in THOSE states that would feel impactful. Does anyone know who the senators to target are?
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I am watching his hearing as I type. The flippancy with which all of these important issues are being dismissed is disheartening to say the least.
He’s the best man for the job!