The Miami Herald ran an article in today’s newspaper about the two candidates running for Governor in Florida after the state’s primaries. Please read the descriptions of each candidate and tell me what you think:
“On the right: U.S. Rep. Ron DeSantis, a 39-year-old conservative, Harvard-educated Iraq War veteran who rode presidential tweets and FOX News interviews to a resounding primary win over Agricultural Commissioner Adam Putnam.
And on the left: Andrew Gillum, a 39-year-old liberal who with the help of progressive political organizations surged in the last weeks of his campaign to upset a better-funded field.”
The candidate of the right is U.S. Congressional Representative Desantis, a White male, establishment Republican a U.S. Representative and for the state of Florida and was endorsed by 45. Representative Desantis is also running to be the Governor for the state of Florida.
The candidate on the left is MAYOR Andrew Gillum, the man who is currently the mayor of the state’s capital, Tallahassee, Florida. Andrew Gillum is a Democrat running for governor in a state that hasn’t had a Democratic governor for over 24-years. Gillum is vying to become the state’s first Black governor.
Did you notice the differences in how both esteemed men were described here? Did you see how unflattering the description was of the Black candidate? This is how White get to use the excuse they don’t know if they can trust Black candidates. Biased journalist aid White voters in their decision making processes by disregarding or ignoring their accomplishments, in favor of highlighting White accomplishments.
White = All things good. Black = Must be bad or rotten.
The White politician had all of his accomplishments briefly, yet disgustingly, noted in the article. His college and educational background is noted. His service to America is apparently good and noteworthy.
The Black politician doesn’t even get a mention that he too is college educated (He graduated from FAMU, a historically Black University in Tallahassee, FL), or that he was formerly a Tallahassee City Commissioner. He is the youngest person (age 23) to ever be elected to the Tallahassee City Commission. He has been a public servant in the state of Florida for 15 years. The writers apparently didn’t feel Mayor Gillum’s personal or professional accomplishments were noteworthy.
Do you see how easy it is for biased journalist to plant “fake” seeds of inferiority?
These drastically different narratives were at the very beginning of a long article in the Miami Herald Newspaper about how each ascended to the top of their respective party tickets. The narratives likely instantly tainted the views of undecided readers. Not touting Gillum’s trustworthiness and hard work ethic could have devastating consequences to his campaign.
I’m sure the biased descriptions also led some wealthy, educated White and Hispanic readers to view Desantis in a more positive light because he went to “Harvard” and was an Iraq War Veteran.
The biases of the writers were clear.
These descriptions of the two candidates not only went out locally, but readers engaged in politics nationally got the shitty description of Mayor Gillum, the Mayor of the state’s capital. I found the description of the Mayor deeply offensive, but I’m sure most people didn’t pay this any mind.
The writers of the article wrote it as if the Mayor just came out of nowhere to become the Democratic nominee for Governor here. He’s just lucky. The three journalist who wrote the article wrote it specifically for White, readers.
What was so hard about touting the accomplishments of Black people? Mayor Gillum been to Miami many times. Hell, Andrew Gillum was born in Miami for goodness sake. His hometown newspaper couldn’t even show unbiased love for a native son.
Even when we are doing good, the media fails to write about it appropriately. Whether we do good, or whether we do bad, we get the same shitty write ups in the paper describing us.
Black Bias in Journalism is Real
This story is a perfect example of how White journalist infect the minds of readers by authoring trash descriptions about people of color causing White people to interpret we are inferior, unqualified, and/or untrustworthy to do the business of America. White writers act like Black folks are just lucky to be in the running.
This type of biased journalism is a disgrace, and it’s time we all call out journalists of mainstream print media outlets who participate in denigrating and devaluing the accomplishments of people of color every time they do it until they get their shit together or go out of business.
We don’t need another thing to divide us.
This Will Likely Be the Ugliest Political Race in the Nation
This race is going to get ugly. This race will bluntly and blatantly be about Black and Brown versus White. It will be about Trump and his racial dividing White Nativist rhetoric versus the liberal, people-friendly Bernie Sanders Revolution. It’s going to be the old guard versus the youthful liberals. The race will be the wealthy, White establishment versus the Brown underdog. It will be about the working poor vs. the White, wealthy snowbirds, businessmen, corporations and developers
Although the race will be played out in Florida, it’s repercussions will reverberate throughout the country. It will be a replay of 2008 and 2012 times 10. The shenanigans are already beginning.
Just this morning, Rep. Desantis used an ugly reference to describe the residents of Florida in reference to the state’s Governor race. As a matter of fact, he was dog whistling to his base.
Rep. Desantis, the Republican nominee for Governor, warned Floridians on Fox News not to “monkey this up” by embracing the agenda of Andrew Gillum, the Democratic nominee. Oh yeah, he also used the word “articulate” when describing the Mayor. As if Black folks can’t speak… Ugh
(Of not, Fox News has since distanced itself from the derogatory remarks. Mark it on your calendars.)
This is bullshit, and most of us knew what Desantis meant when he decided to use this language in context with Mayor Gillum.
Desantis is telling White GOP voters they are monkeys if they vote for Gillum. Monkeys like the dark-skinned Black candidate, the same type of person with a look White folks love to refer to as monkeys. That’s a favorite derogatory go to by racist White men and women, especially here in the South.
Yesterday, the President warned Evangelicals about the violence that will ensue if the GOP lose this fall. Violence people.
We have until November 6th to go down this long, painful road of racist, derogatory bullshit and violence. This is going to be the most polarizing race in the nation. We all need to be more vigilant about these types of micro-agressions.
Allies, if you can’t see clearly how White journalist and politicians are using these types of micro-aggressions, dog whistles, intimidation tactics, and omissions of informative facts to distort the views of White readership regarding the accomplishments of decent Black people and Blacks in leadership …. then we are in a world of trouble.
I do not appreciate how White journalist intentionally write unflattering descriptions about people of color, even when we are trying to do good.
There was absolutely no reason why both candidates running in the Florida Governor’s race couldn’t get the same type of write up about their backgrounds and accomplishments. The only reason they can’t is because the writers have an obvious bias toward Black and Brown people which is clearly reflected in their writing.
We need to write emails and call newsroom editors, blast these people on social media to highlight the differences and biases in writing, and lastly write letters to the editor about how biased their news outlets are. If we don’t call these biased and/or racist journalist out, they will never change.
I’m tired of reading lackluster descriptions about accomplished Black and Brown people written by tired, lazy, biased White journalists. If you’re going to write about people of color, do your homework, and write about us in the same way your would write about your favorite White candidates, your White grandma, or your favorite White community leader.
Your pens and word processors in concert with your bias can do the same kind of harm a gun or knife can do to people of color trying desperately to not only become upwardly mobile, but also to lead their communities, their states, and their countries. America is melting pot, so write about the different colors in the pot without your antiquated, dated slants.
Calling All Allies
Allies, we need you to call out White journalist when they attempt to short us on our accomplishments or cross the line in telling our stories. Sometimes the only people you guys listen to are yourselves. You bringing their biases to light would be so refreshing, and so helpful in our efforts to escape how we are viewed in America.
We know how to do good for our communities, and we do it. We know how to lead, and we are highly capable of leading We’re educated. And we can be supported by people other than Black people. Allies calling out bad White journalism and pointing these things out would help us greatly. Black people also need to do the same.
Read the bullshit, mediate on the bullshit, compare the bullshit, then call out the bullshit! The only way things will ever change is if we check biases in journalist. This is going to be a very long political season. If we don’t fight to go forward, we are consenting to move backwards. Back to the 60's.
I don’t know about ya’ll, but I ain’t going back!
Marley K., 2018