Memo To Black Folk: Don't Be So Thirsty For Trump's Kool-Aid

01/19/2017 10:25 pm ET Updated Jan 20, 2018
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 16: (L to R) President-elect Donald Trump shakes hands with Martin Luther King III after their meeting
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 16: (L to R) President-elect Donald Trump shakes hands with Martin Luther King III after their meeting at Trump Tower, January 16, 2017 in New York City. Trump will be inaugurated as the next U.S. President this coming Friday. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

It's been fascinating to watch all the brouhaha in Black America as, one by one, Donald Trump grants an audience to certain leading Blacks, but has yet to meet with Black leaders.

It was shameful and disgraceful to watch Trump pose for photos with Martin Luther King, III, while he was dissing John Lewis, a dedicated disciple of his father.

In the very same week that we honor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., the person I regard as the greatest American we've ever produced, we will also witness the ascension to power of a vacuous American fraud, a con man who epitomizes the worst of public life.


In the very same week that we honor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., we will also witness the ascension to power of a vacuous American fraud...

It's as if the racial arsonist Donald Trump thinks he can have a red carpet photo-op relationship with Black folk, while he firebombs Black civil rights heroes and pushes a political agenda that's antithetical to the best interests of the Black community.

The ultimate irony is that Trump has stolen a page out of the Obama playbook for how to deal with Black folk by circumventing Black leadership.

Obama did it for eight years. He basically ignored the Congressional Black Caucus, progressive Black thought leaders and his Black critics by going directly to Black media, by whom he was beloved. The steady stream of photo-ops with Black celebrities at the White House was apparently enough to appease the masses. Now we see Trump running the same play, albeit less successfully, so far.

The photo-op is the new WMD -- weapon of mass distraction.

So, when Trump shows up at The Apollo and sings an Al Green hook....

Anyway, I'm thrilled to see that after an eight-year presidential accountability hiatus, Black folk are back in full affect, ready to keep Trump's feet to the fire. But, so we don't end up getting burned, here's some unsolicited advice for Black folk who agree to a sit down with the new president.

1. Do no harm. My grandmother, Big Mama, used to always say, "You can't start out wrong and end up right." Until Trump atones or apologizes for the racist, sexist, classist campaign he ran to secure the presidency, your meeting with him makes you an enabler.

2. Stop being so thirsty. Trump is not an invulnerable power to whom we must bow down. If the choice is acquiescence or resistance, we should choose resistance. I think some of the Black bourgeoisie got spoiled by all the White House invites over the past eight years. For elites, access is everything, but there are spiritual consequences to our actions.

3. Tell the truth. Trump needs to be told the truth about his racial treachery. But I suspect if he knew you were coming in to tell him that truth, face to face, your invitation would be rescinded. Quicker than right now and sooner than at once. With Trump, there's his side and the wrong side. Funny how all these Black folk sound the same when they descend from Trump Tower. It's pretty clear to me, you don't get a meeting unless you're prepared to kiss his.....ring. Folk are good at preaching to the powerless, but can't muster the courage to speak truth to the powerful.

4. Save the spin. Let's just be honest, most of the Black folk who are taking these meetings with Trump are trying to advance their own projects. Most are folk who have been anointed or appointed by the mainstream culture, not elected or selected by the Black community. If you want to meet with Trump so you can get the hook up, then just say that. But for goodness' sake, stop telling Black folk that Trump is 'sincere,' 'caring,' and 'concerned' after you've had one thirty minute meeting with him. We watched him daily for an entire year, but you've gleaned some fresh insights in less than an hour? Miss me with that mess.

5. Lead. Love. Save. Serve. You can't lead Black people unless you love Black people, and you can't save Black people unless you serve Black people. Love and service. To Black people, not the president.