President-Elect Trump takes on civil rights icon, John Lewis on eve of MLK-Day – Tola Adenle

January 15, 2017


A young  and older Representative John Lewis, has always stood up for a better America even in the face of police brutality while the President-Elect, Donald Trump (his age contemporary) was working alongside his real estate developer/father and denying African-Americans the right to rent and live in their New York properties until the Feds stepped in to enforce the law of the land.

In John Lewis later years when he was still in the fight for civil rights, no thanks to those who continues to deny African-Americans those rights, the future President-Elect was running his companies, which included the contentious Trump University that recently settled millions of dollars through the courts to students who had claimed they were scammed.

Trump’s stepping ladder to the candidacy for president included denigrating Barack Obama, African-America’s first president as a non-American in his infamous “birther” conspiracy theory which claimed President Obama was born outside the USA and not therefore qualified to be president. Trump kept the bizarre claim alive almost to the end of his campaign for president long after President Obama finally decided to post copy of his birth certificate online.

Not only did Trump ride on the back of a bizarre conspiracy theory to get in the long queue for the GOP primaries towards becoming American president, his campaign speeches, and rallies became The Impetus, The Places and the outright signals for old enemies and insignias of African-Americans to come out of the wood works for display of open racial slur-fests and violence against AfrAms who dared show up at Trump’s rallies, including the KKK, the Confederate flags, et cetera.


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The Ku Klux Klan (KKK),  is on the march again

Image result for racial images at donald trump ralliestrump-rallies

Image result for racial images at donald trump rallies

Image result for racial images at donald trump ralliesImage result for racial images at donald trump rallies


The President-Elect was shown in disturbing videos that are on the web showing his supporters yell racial as well as sexist slurs, actions he never checked. Here’s a single item: The New York Times

Donald Trump stopped at nothing to denigrate, humiliate and stumped on African-Americans as if they really do not belong in this country, that their contributions -paid in blood and sweat and every way, including service in many wars – did not happen or count for nothing even while he has gone for almost two decades without paying taxes, using what may not be illegal but avenues not opened to the average American.

Image result for Images of John Lewis

I input variations of the following question into google search: What has Donald Trump contributed to American life? 

I wasn’t expecting much but the answers came as varied as the different versions of my question; here are a few excerpts from a few:

Gone bankrupt several times, or like he calls it, taking advantage of corporate tax law …Ann Marie Hoff//The Donald is a self-aggrandizing money, power, and status addict. Entertainment. C. Faraone //I can recognize a scary lunatic when I see one. P. Griffiths//He’s kept our failure rate from sinking too low; a great example of a terrible example; lost more money than Howard Hughes. Al Klein, // lots of things … Reality TV – developed new tech for reality TV … my television learned  to turn itself off whenever the Apprentice came on … A beauty pageant, Casinos, new standards in egomania … Nicholas Tee  [

John Lewis

State troopers use clubs against participants of a civil rights voting march in Selma, Alabama on March 7, 1965. At foreground right is John Lewis, Chairman of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, who is beaten by a state trooper. That historic violent day, which became known as “Bloody Sunday,” is widely acknowledged for galvanizing the nation’s leaders and ultimately yielding passage of the landmark Voting Rights Act of 1965. (AP)

With MLK, 1965



Extreme Left is the late Rev. Ralph Abernathy, MLK in the middle, and a young John Lewis, extreme right

Same question on John Lewis?

… genuine American hero … moral leader who commands widespread respect in the chamber// more than 40 arrests//committed to non-violence// advocate for ethics in government and neighborhood preservation//among many honors, a recipient of America’s highest civilian award, the Medal of Freedom.

Between Representative John Lewis and President-Elect Trump, I’m sure the choice for who has spent his adult life working to perfect a more inclusive America where goals should be pursued without resorting to, or inciting violence.

As President-Elect Trump is starting the beginning of a week that will transform him to the most powerful person in the world, a position of such powers as he possibly has not yet grasped, a position that calls – in the words of the outgoing Vice-President Biden – for him to “grow up”. He just must learn to put an end to answering every slight back because they would not only continue to diminish him but would diminish the U.S.A. – a country I’m sure he must love like all true patriots.

In spite of all the past missteps in the areas of race relations, his words and actions to women, his disdain of other ethnic and religious groups, et cetera, Donald Trump can become a good president IF he wants to because the past can be corrected with courageous and decisive steps at appropriate times. It’s all in his hands and he has the power to achieve great things IF his goal of running for president is to leave indelible footsteps in the annals of U.S. history.

Preventing an Obama legacy, as has been the manic goal of the Republican House and Senate these past eight years is an effort that is bound to fail despite the hysteria around the repeal of the Affordable Care Act just as a Trump presidency that would be focused at “erasing Obama legacy” would not be in his own interest.

Obama’s legacy cannot be obliterated even if the ACA is repealed. While our views today of his legacy is seen mostly from the prism of present-day destructive politics that harp to America’s darkest past.  The verdict of history on Barack Obama will not be concluded by opportunistic today’s men, the McConnells and Ryans of today’s direction-less GOP elected officials that seem collectively unpatriotic in the true sense of that word.

Obama, a very decent man who brought dignity and grace to the office that majority of American people entrusted him with for two terms, has done his best, better than anyone could probably have done given the political and economic situations he met and the audacious steps he took to save the country’s economy from complete collapse UNDER  EXTREME RACIST-DRIVEN ANTAGONISM AND OBSTRUCTIONISM HE MET AT EVERY TURN.

All of us living now may be long gone but our descendants and perhaps more importantly, his descendants, will get to learn of the great contributions he made that would show why history is very kind to forbear.

Trump could become a good – even great because time, indeed, does change yesterday – president if he works hard at it: eschewing bitterness, learning to rein in his primal instincts which all of us have but most learn to suppress and contain, and genuinely try to understand the sufferings of minorities as well as those who see things differently from the way he does, rather than going into the presidency with the plan that his cabinet appointees would work with him to achieve what would be dismantling legacies, killing old minorities rights, women’s rights and pursuing policies that would be detrimental to the interests of millions of Americans.

Getting even, too, does not often get one far.

As we celebrate the birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr. tomorrow – an act signed into law by Republican President Ronald Reagan in 1983 and became effective three years later over thirty years ago – it is imperative that the President-Elect changes direction from words and acts that would not enhance his standing even long after his tenure.

Even though he’s powerful, he must throw away old template of Trump properties when the company his family owned selectively refused to rent to African-Americans and had to be taken to court before settling and complying. The whole country is his constituency now.

I must confess that it took his running for president for millions, including this blogger, to actually really know how extreme his stands on important social issues are.

The choice will be President Trump’s.

SUNDAY, JANUARY 15, 2017. 5:45 a.m. [GMT]




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