July 20, 2019

Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
"Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!" cries she
With silent lips. "Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"

Those lines have long been the promise of America to immigrants coming from all over the world. Some fleeing war-torn countries; some fleeing extreme poverty and want; some fleeing persecution for their faith, their skin color, their sexuality; some seeking education and opportunities not available to them from their native country. No one decides to move to another country lightly.

And this country has had varying degrees of welcome to them. There has always been a tension between humanity and bigotry. There are times that bigotry won. But there are also times when humanity won.

Donald Trump has built his entire candidacy and administration on being unwelcome to Others. It was never economic anxiety that put him in the White House, it was ALWAYS racial grievance.

And with his statements this week against the four freshman congresswomen of color, he has put in clear delineation exactly what this coming election is about, as Joy Reid so brilliantly put on her show Saturday.

What Donald Trump did was to reset the terms of the 2020 election. Now the question on the table will be what the Charlotte Observer's editorial board asked quote, 'Are you okay with a racist president, Republicans?'

Those are the new terms of the 2020 election.

If Republicans stick with him in 2020, they can never again pretend economic anxiety had anything to do with it.

That vote will be a clear answer to the Charlotte Observer that yes, Republicans are fine with having a racist president. Whoever the democratic nominee is is going to be pitching all kinds of ideas, whether it's on health care or the environment or immigration reform and Donald Trump will be running on [racial grievance].

That's it. That's your choice in November 2020: Do you stand with the promise of America or do you stand with Donald Trump and white nationalism?

There are NO other choices.

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