Joy-Ann Reid's and her guest Reverend Barber presented the reality of what Representative Steve Scalise represented. The Alt-Right is attacking Reid for being truthful. We do not need a kumbaya moment. We need the perspective eloquently stated by Barber and Reid.
Joy-ann Reid does not fall for the facade of civility by those who've done evil
Joy-Ann Reid, unlike many, did not let a false civility for a Congressman who harmed many prevent her from her job, real journalism. In fact, the shooting of Representative Scalise and others presented the exact opportunity to illustrate exactly why the Progressive narrative is the correct point of view.
The Scalise shooting must be viewed exactly in the context Joy-Ann Reid and Reverend Dr. William Barber discussed it in the excerpted video and the transcript below.
Joy-Ann Reid: This week's shooting and a GOP Congressional baseball practice left Democrats and Republicans calling for unity rallying around Congressman Steve Scalise who still remains in the hospital in critical condition. But despite the current kumbaya, the political divisions are still very real, and they have moral implications. And who better to discuss than the Reverend Dr. William Barber, President of Repairs of the Breach and the Founder of Moral Mondays. You and I had a conversation about this, and I wanted to try to give everyone else the benefit of your wisdom on this. This idea that Republicans now have that they're saying we all have to come together we have to rally together. When you heard them saying that what did you hear?
Rev. Dr. William Barber: Well, first of all, we should be in prayer we should be unified in our concern for the congressman and the two officers that were wounded. But first, we should also be deeply concerned about the three people that were killed on the same day. Ryan, Representative the Ryan said when you attack one of us you attack all of us. Well, this can't just be a moral ethic that you apply to members of Congress. That's why the real question is where one or two days of changes in personality mean a fundamental change in public policy. That's the moral question.
I've been thinking about this Joy. You know all of those that were injured needed health care. So now will they go back to work and say every American deserves health care, deserves what we receive. And we will preserve the Affordable Care Act. Move the universal health care and make sure pre-existing conditions are protected. Since they could have died, will they repent of efforts to take money from Medicaid that will help poor people and disabled and sick people many who will die without that? A black man from my alma mater saved their lives. Will they go back to work and restore the Voting Rights Act and stop systemic racism against black people that's happening through voter suppression and racialized redistricting? A lesbian black woman saved them. Will they go back to work and no longer promote laws that attack the human rights of LGBT community? They were shot by guns allowed to be carried openly. Will they go back and challenge laws that allow people to get guns easier than they can vote? They were shot by a white middle-aged man for political reasons. Will they change the practice of profiling terrorism as a fear of Muslims and violence that's mainly rooted in the urban black areas?
'Tone' is fine. But if the policies are terrible we don't have stability. They were saved by good police. Will they, therefore, challenged bad police like those in the Castile, the brother who died in the Castile case? These are the serious moral questions that have to be answered more than just a one or two days of shaking hands and playing a game because this is really not a game.
Joy-Ann Reid: You know, I think it's so important to keep that in mind because it is one thing to sort of want civility and to be and to take umbrage when it's one of your friends when it's one of your own colleagues. But like you said there's a whole country out there. And a lot of people, at least in my Twitter timeline, and it is a delicate thing because you know obviously everybody is wishing the congressman well and hoping that he recovers. But Steve Scalise has a history that we've all been forced, to sort of ignore. On race, he did come to leadership after some controversy over attending a white nationalist event which he says he didn't know what it was. He also co-sponsored a bill to amend the constitution to define marriage as between a man and a woman. He voted for the House healthcare bill which as you said would gut health care for millions of people including million children. He co-sponsored a bill to repeal the ban on semi-automatic weapons.
But Steve Scalise has a history that we've all been forced, to sort of ignore. On race, he did come to leadership after some controversy over attending a white nationalist event which he says he didn't know what it was. He also co-sponsored a bill to amend the constitution to define marriage as between a man and a woman. He voted for the House healthcare bill which as you said would gut health care for millions of people including million children. He co-sponsored a bill to repeal the ban on semi-automatic weapons. Because he is in jeopardy and everyone is pulling for him, are we required in a moral sense to put that aside at the moment?
Rev. Dr. William Barber: What we're required to say is that we hope he recovers and that he recovers with a renewed mindset. If a lesbian person saved your life, you should not go forward you know being homophobic, shouldn't be anyway. If you almost died but your life was saved because you got health care then you should apply that ethic and want everybody else the same health care that you have. You know the Bible, one of the guys, who prayed, Walker is from North Carolina and he was saying how he prayed for everybody. Well, and he's a Christian, well the Bible says in Isaiah 10, woe unto those who legislate evil and robbed the poor of their rights and make women and children their prey.
The Bible calls whenever you just put on a face in a time of crisis but continue to do the same things, it's called making grains look good that are still full of dead man's bones. In other words, it's hypocrisy. If Congresspeople pray for one another and they should P-R-A-Y. But then if they pass policies that prey P-R-E-Y on the poor and on minorities and the sick, then we have a serious moral problem. And even our Constitution Joy says the only way you can get to domestic tranquility, the only way you can get to civility, is you must start with the establishment of justice. You must provide for the common good, and you must promote the general welfare. Changing the tone of words is not enough. You have to have a change in the trajectory of policy. Prayer is not enough. Faith must have work. So I'm praying that the brother gets up and leaves and then comes back and says you know this experience has changed my thinking fundamentally not just about myself but about the policies I support. And lastly Joy, they talked about raising a million dollars for charity. That is good. But if you turn around and take six hundred billion dollars from the poor and the least of these and you don't give a vote to give people a living wage, personal privatize charity is not going to solve our social problems when it comes to the poor and uplift of the least of these.
Also published on Medium.