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Now that she has either exited Donald Trump’s White House kicking, screaming, cussing and flailing her Louis Vuitton bag in a manner one would expect of one of the Housewives of Atlanta, or as she has described following a calm, cool, and collected meeting in the “Situation Room” with White House Chief of Staff John Kelly, Omarosa Manigualt Newman saw her brief stint as White House Director of Communications for the Office of Public Liaison end last week the same way it did in on The Apprentice — with her firing.
This sparked endless social media threads among African Americans who questioned, foolishly so, whether she could get back her so-called “Black Card”.
This is absurd on many levels, the most obvious one being this: Like many who have opted to Bojangle their way though their adult lives in exchange for the hefty compensation far right-wing conservatives are willing to pay for vocal, self-loathing African Americans, Omarosa decided long ago that the “Black Card” was worthless.
Maybe it was the red meat she threw out during ABC News’ Good Morning America interview that got Black folks to wondering if we should welcome back someone into the culture that even President Donald Trump viewed as malignant.
“As the only African-American woman in this White House senior staff, I have seen things that have made me uncomfortable, that have upset me and affected me deeply and emotionally, and affected my people and my community,” she said in her first TV interview since she got canned last week.
First of all, she’s wrong. With her exit, the number of Black senior advisers inside of the White House is zero. Trump administration members Dr. Jerome M. Adams, the surgeon general, and Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Ben Carson are not White House staff.
But more cogently, as it pertains to her sudden embrace of the community no one has heard her make mention of until now, where was this love prior to her dismissal? Why, when she was waltzing and soaking it all in at Trump’s inauguration ball last winter, did she fail to recognize then how problematic it was that she was the only Black senior staffer?
While her job description was mostly a mystery and hardly anyone could explain her role — a common occurrence with Blacks hired mostly for the purpose of saying we have one — part of her responsibilities were supposed to include community liaising. This raises the question, where was she when White supremacists were marching through Charlottesville, Va., espousing hate for her community?
When asked about Trump’ lukewarm response to the protests in Charlottesville that ultimately left a White protestor and two state police officers dead, the best she was capable of was that former President Barack Obama did not criticize violence at the hands of the Black Lives Matter Movement.
Prior to that, she was voiceless about pre-election violence incited by her now former two-time boss when he encouraged physical attacks on members of her community who were simply exercising their First-Amendment rights by protesting Trump’s dark-and-loaded nationalist campaign rhetoric.
If we are to believe the line now being espoused by African-American conservatives who wanted to work in the White House, she was particularly territorial and protective of her “only one” status and worked tirelessly to keep it that way.
This does not sound like someone concerned about her community, at least not the one that currently views Trump so poorly that his current approval rating according to the most recent Gallup Poll is 8 percent among African Americans.
She says she has quite the story to tell, which means she’s going to be laser-focused now on replacing the $179,000 salary she’ll be kissing goodbye after next month and pursuing a book deal. She’s already said “when I can tell my story it is a profound story that I know the world will want to hear.”
The reality is she’s already told her story through her inaction and silence. She has shown a willingness to sidestep and ignore crucial situations that, as the only Black staffer to formerly have daily access to the president, she had an obligation to be in the president’s ear on matters pertaining to said community. She chose otherwise.
So while you’re still debating whether or not to giver her back her Black Card, the reality is she never had nor wanted one.
John N. Mitchell has worked as a journalist for more than a quarter century. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and Tweet at @freejohnmitchel.
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