My mother is a ‘Delta Dear’ – which means she’s been a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc for over 50 years. Most of the women in my family are also Deltas – which means their Founder’s Day is practically a holiday on my calendar.
This past weekend, regional chapters of the sorority celebrated their 1913 birth virtually. It was an emotional event because their newly appointed National President, Cheryl A. Hickman, suddenly passed away a few days prior. The occasion was deemed worthy enough for White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki to drop a mention, mainly because the Democratic Party recognizes the unifying push that came from Black sororities during the election of President Biden, and in support of Vice President Kamala Harris, who is an AKA.
As my mother adorned herself in logo insignia red wardrobe and accessorized in elephant accents for the Zoom attendance, I overheard one of the Regional Directors crystalize what most Black people feel about the current state of the John Lewis voting rights bill not being passed – it’s not just two U.S. Senators blocking the bill, it’s 52!
While everyone focuses on Democratic Sens. Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema holding out, very little energy is given to the Republicans who are not in favor, especially the remaining 16 who supported the Voting Rights Act when President George W. Bush extended it in 2006. Would these same Senators be able to look John Lewis in the eye if he were still alive? Or maybe they actually voted against their will under Bush?
So here we are, back on Edmund Pettus Bridge as Republicans propose gerrymandered tolls. The days of party favors are over. Despite Georgia residents going the extra uphill mile to deliver vote TWO Democrats to the Senate, Republicans simply used their corporate utility belt to induce two other Dems to the dark (money) side.
In addition to chameleons, Black people know we can’t count on skin folk like Sen. Tim Scott to do the right thing from the sunken place. We have more faith in Mitt Romney. But the normalization of thinly veiled white power fascism is becoming unbearable. The divide is not political, it’s moral.
How you were raised is important to how you act in public. I think about my mother and mothers who have the sisterhood of sorority. I think about the mothers of people like Tim Scott, Justice Clarence Thomas or that son of a Mitch, Daniel Cameron. I wonder what pride means to each mother and son. I think of villages, neighborhoods, blocks and backyard barbeques. I think about the codes of conduct and responsibility that goes into raising men. I think of the collective power of Black women.
At the end of 2021, ESPN posted an old hall of shame highlight that happened in 2015. During a Pittsburgh Penguins game, the coach threw a puck over the partition to a fan. It was intended for a little boy and everyone in the surrounding crowd understood the defining moment. All but one grown (white) man, who intercepted the puck, placed it his pocket and calmly sat back down like he had done nothing wrong. The evil act quickly made rounds as a feel-good story because the home team gifted the boy with a puck and hockey jersey.
The video sickens me every time I watch and the publicity spin only adds to my nausea. All I see is a sea of white people who let that man get away with a crime against moral decency because he technically didn’t steal. All I know, is that man would have never gotten away with stealing joy from a child if he was surrounded by a “red” sea of Deltas.
I look forward to a Black woman showing America what supreme justice looks like.
Trevor is a creative mercenary and ethical lobbyist born and raised on Beale Street. Follow him on Twitter @trevbetter.