Tulsi Gabbard calls on Biden, Harris to condemn ALL racism, starting with Lori Lightfoot

Former Democratic Rep. Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii is calling on President Joe Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, and others in the administration to condemn all forms of racism, including “anti-white” bigotry expressed this week by Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot.

“Mayor Lightfoot’s blatant anti-white racism is abhorrent. I call upon President Biden, Kamala Harris, and other leaders of our county—of all races—to join me in calling for Mayor Lightfoot’s resignation. Our leaders must condemn all racism, including anti-white,” Gabbard, who is of Native American descent, noted on Twitter Friday.

Gabbard was responding to a statement earlier this week from Lightfoot in which she announced that, on her two-year anniversary of being in office, she would grant one-on-one interviews but only to journalists of color.

“In looking at the absence of diversity across the City Hall press corps and other newsrooms, sadly it does not appear that many of the media institutions in Chicago have caught on and truly have not embraced this moment,” Lightfoot noted in a statement justifying her stance.

“I have been struck since my first day on the campaign trail back in 2018 by the overwhelming whiteness and maleness of Chicago media outlets, editorial boards, the political press corps, and yes, the City Hall press corps specifically,” she continued.

Lightfoot, the city’s first black, openly gay mayor, went on to praise herself for “breaking barriers” as she lambasted Chicago media outlets for their failure to deal with alleged “institutionalized racism” on their staff. She also justified her decision to exclude white journalists for the time being as part of a lifelong push for diversity and inclusion.

Lightfoot did, however, offer praise for the city’s leaders, including the “majority Black and Latinx City Council” while denouncing the City Hall press corps as being largely white.

“Many of them are smart and hard-working, savvy and skilled. But mostly white, nonetheless,” wrote Lightfoot.

Her overtly racist decision drew no small amount of criticism, including pushback from some of Chicago’s minority journalists.

I am a Latino reporter @chicagotribune whose interview request was granted for today. However, I asked the mayor’s office to lift its condition on others and when they said no, we respectfully canceled. Politicians don’t get to choose who covers them,” wrote Chicago Tribune reporter Gregory Pratt on Twitter.

Washington Post reporter Paul Farhi noted as well: “Fact is, elected officials, candidates, celebrities, athletes etc. choose who they want to interview them all the time. They just don’t do so on the basis of race or gender. Or at least they don’t admit they do.”

Lightfoot was criticized by white journalists as well, including Fox News’s Tucker Carlson.

“Equity, it turns out, is racism. It’s as simple as that; equity is racism,” Carlson said during his Wednesday night show, adding that in her statement, Lightfoot defined “equity and inclusion” as “the north stars of this administration.”

Jon Dougherty

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