I can’t remember when I last saw a white man shed as many tears over the fate of a Black man as Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) did last night on Herschel Walker’s behalf during Sean Hannity’s Fox News show.
I’m sure there were folks across the racial spectrum who, like many of us, sobbed at the sight of George Floyd being extinguished under now-federal-inmate Derek Chauvin’s knee. I don’t know who those people are since they lack Graham’s status as a senator. And conservative hosts like Hannity would never platform anyone capable of that much compassion for a Black man cut down by a violent cop. Graham’s outpouring of empathy for Walker’s plight, though, did find a home on Hannity’s show. And what, exactly, is that plight? Well, it’s that the evil libs want to wreck his life to warn off young, Black people from following in his steps by becoming a Republican.
“If they destroy Herschel it will deter people of color from wanting to be a conservative Republican, because you’ll just have your life ruined,” Graham said. “The conservative movement for people of color is on the ballot in Georgia.”
For fuck’s sake, Lindsey. If that’s what’s on the ballot, your side lost long before Walker took a torch to his own life and then showed up on Georgians’ doorsteps presenting his scrap metal as qualifications for high office. Walker, if you require a recounting, once allegedly put a gun to his ex-wife’s head and threatened to blow it off. His son ranted on Twitter about Daddy Dearest abandoning his own children while shaming other Black men for being absentees. The mother of another of his children (we’re not sure exactly how many he has because he’s also been caught lying about that) says he cut her a check to abort another child, years before he professed opposition to abortion on the campaign trail. He’s been telling people he’s in law enforcement while carrying around honorary badges that confer no law enforcement powers—something that could well get you locked up in Georgia, if you weren’t Herschel Walker.
If domestic violence, being a hypocrite and impersonating cops hasn’t thus far ruined Walker’s life—and forcing a runoff for a seat in the U.S. Senate would suggest it hasn’t—then absolutely nothing his political opponents say about him will. Walker, like his friend Donald Trump once riffed, could walk down the busiest street in Georgia (Peachtree? Northside Drive before and after Falcons games??) and shoot someone and it wouldn’t have made much difference to the 1.9 million people who pulled the lever next to his name because political power, uh, trumps triflin’.
Let’s assume that the left’s goal is to ruin Walker’s life. To what end? Graham and Republicans need look no further than their own policies to find every reason why young, nonwhite voters don’t show much interest in their party. Young people across all racial groups overwhelmingly support the constitutional right to an abortion, a thing conservatives worked 50 years to undo. In a CNN poll back in May, young whites had the lowest rate of support for cancellation of federal student loan debt, followed in order by Asian-American, Hispanic and Black young adults, with Black young people supporting cancellation at about 50 percent. Conservatives, meanwhile, managed to successfully kill President Biden’s student loan forgiveness program, at least for now, in the courts.
Conservatives are also behind the Supreme Court case that seeks to dismantle Affirmative Action in college admissions, putting a target directly on the backs of young Black and Hispanic students while conveniently ignoring the use of so-called legacy admissions policies that favor wealthy, connected whites. We haven’t even gotten to the voter suppression tactics, election police forces and hostility to any substantive police reform put forward by conservatives. Young Black people don’t fear having their lives destroyed for supporting conservatism, they fear having their lives destroyed by it. Democrats, as bad as they can be at politics, don’t have much to fear in terms of a mass exodus of Black folks across the aisle because Republicans have shown time and again that that’s not what they actually want.
So, Lindsey, don’t waste your tears on Walker, who’s doing just fine despite his own best efforts. If you’d like to find a Black man to cry for, maybe try one whose life was actually destroyed, like Walter Scott, murdered in Graham’s home state in 2017 by an ex-cop now serving 20 year for shooting him in the back.
Or maybe you can just pour us a glass so we can all know what salty, fake ass tears taste like.