Cornel West praises ‘chickens coming to roost,’ points to Obama failures, ‘black faces in high places’ didn’t work

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Harvard’s Dr. Cornel West slammed the “neoliberal wing” of the Democratic Party and claimed America is a “failed social experiment” in the wake of nationwide protests.

The philosophy professor and activist spoke with CNN’s Anderson Cooper about the ongoing protests and riots sparked by the death of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police, contending that the reasons for the current unrest go deeper than the death of the 46-year-old unarmed black man.


(Source: CNN)

“I think we are witnessing America as a failed social experiment,” West said Friday on “Anderson Cooper 360.”

“What I mean by that is that the history of black people for over 200 and some years in America has been looking at America’s failure, its capitalist economy could not generate and deliver in such a way that people can live lives of decency. The nation-state, its criminal justice system, its legal system could not generate protection of rights and liberties,” he said.

“So when you get this perfect storm of all these multiple failures at these different levels of the American empire,” he continued, adding that the “chickens are coming home to roost.”

“It is a lynching at the highest level. Nobody can deny it,” West told Cooper.

“I thank God that we have people in the streets,” he said of protesters who have taken to demonstrating, rioting and looting in Minneapolis and other major cities. “Could you imagine this kind of lynching taking place and people are indifferent, people don’t care, people are callous?”

He claimed that the “system cannot reform itself.”

“We’ve tried black faces in high places. Too often our black politicians, professional class, middle class become too accommodated to the capitalist economy, too accommodated to a militarized nation-state, too accommodated to the market-driven culture of celebrities, status, power, fame, all that superficial stuff that means so much to so many fellow citizens,” he argued.

West claimed the “neoliberal wing of the Democratic party that is now in the driver’s seat” can’t create needed change in the system as “black faces are losing legitimacy too because the Black Lives Matter movement emerged under a black president, a black attorney general, and a black Homeland Security [Secretary] and they couldn’t deliver,” referring to former President Obama and his administration.

Fox News’ Tucker Carlson slammed the former president as “America’s chief racial arsonist” in reacting to Obama’s statement on Floyd’s death and the Minneapolis riots.

“President Obama has long been — no one wants to say it, but it’s true — America’s chief racial arsonist,” he said on “Tucker Carlson Tonight.”

“He accused the country’s hospitals and courts of being racist and discriminatory,” Carlson said of Obama’s statement. “He never mentioned the riots at all. It’s like they didn’t happen. Apparently he doesn’t care about the black neighborhoods being torched, it’s not like he’s ever lived in one.”


(Source: Fox News)

CNN’s Cooper found a moment in his interview of West to interject and slam President Donald Trump, saying “everybody else is a thug to the president.” West concurred, calling Trump a “neofascist gangster.”

“So when you talk about the masses of black people, the precious poor and working-class black people, brown, red, yellow, whatever color, they’re the ones left out and they feel so thoroughly powerless, helpless, hopeless, then you get rebellion,” West said.

“White supremacy is going to be around for a long, long, long time, don’t be surprised when this happens again,” he added.

“But the question is we must fight. Even in the moment where we have a failed social experiment, we must fight. We must have an antifascist coalition against the White House-Republican party,” West concluded. “We have to tell the truth about the milquetoast cowardly activity we see too often in the neoliberal wing of the Democratic party.”

Frieda Powers

Senior Staff Writer
[email protected]

Originally from New York, Powers graduated from New York University and eventually made her way to sunny South Florida where she has been writing for the BizPacReview team since 2015.
Frieda Powers

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