by M.J. Mamogale, PhD (South Africa)
The recent #blacklivesmatter demonstrations in the US against racism following the brutal death of George Floyd in the hands of white police demonstrate lack of leadership to deal with racism, not only in the US but other parts of the world. Racism by white Americans is worse because we, Africans, consider America the most civilised nation in the world. America abolished slavery and introduced democratic constitution promoting civil liberties for everyone irrespective of race, gender, etc. Unfortunately, with the continuous activities of racism in the US, the pretty image of America being the most civilised nation in the world is gone. Floyd’s brutal murder by white police is not the first case of racism in America. Many black lives have been lost in the past through acts of racism in the USA. The American President seems to not give a damn about daily inhuman treatment or even death of African-Americans in the hands of police. It is so sad that even now some white folks not only in the US, but other parts of the world still find it very hard to coexist with black race. Is it a curse to be black? How long will racism against blacks last? I am saying to America criminalise racism. Impose harsh sentences on those who practice racism.
True leadership would stand up without being pushed and strongly condemn the unjustifiable use of force/violence by police officers against civilians. The deployment of unidentifiable military personnel to deal with peaceful demonstrations (united in their diversity) against racism by Trump is unacceptable and it is tantamount to abuse of executive authority. The military should be kept above partisan politics. I believe Americans — both black and white — will reject brutal acts of racism and deployment of the army, and hold accountable those who make a mockery of the USA Constitution. President Trump cannot be allowed to behave as if he is above the country constitution.