Kamala Harris confounds the white enforcers of America’s racial lines

Kamala Harris drives white conservatives nuts: They don't know how to pigeonhole her. Credit: Harris senatorial web page

That Sen. Caramel Harris or however you mispronounce her name? She’s not black.

Yeah, she went to Howard University, a historically black institution, alma mater of Black History Month founder Carter G. Woodson, opera diva Jessye Norman, Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall, Black Power activist Stokely Carmichael, Peggy Quince, the first African American woman on the Florida Supreme Court, and Nobel Prize-winning novelist Toni Morrison, but so what?

She pledged Alpha Kappa Alpha, the nation’s oldest African American Greek letter sorority, but that doesn’t prove anything.

And, OK, the mayor of a tight, white little burg in Virginia said that Joe Biden “just announced Aunt Jemima” as his running mate, but that guy is plain wrong.

Aunt Jemima is black.

The White Guardians of American Americanness have the real story, which is that Sen. Caracara Harris’ mama was a scientist who emigrated from India, a country that Mark Levin, a radio personality and champion shouter, describes as “out there near China.”

And while it is true that Sen. Karma LOL Harris’s Jamaica-born daddy is a black-ish economics professor and civil rights campaigner, he’s no Peter Tosh, and besides, he openly admits that he’s descended from a plantation owner, a certified white man.

Levin adds: “Her ancestry does not go back to American slavery, to the best of my knowledge her ancestry does not go back to slavery at all.”

Obviously, the dark-complected folks cutting cane on Hamilton Brown’s sugar plantations in the 1820s simply enjoyed doing some cardio in that fresh, Caribbean air.

The noted cinéaste, author, and Fox fave Dinesh D’Souza argues that Harris can’t really say she’s of African descent because her great-great-great-granddaddy was a white fellow and we all know that one drop of white blood makes you white, right?

That’s why Frederick Douglass (son of a slaveholder and a slave), Colin Kaepernick (white mother, Black father), Halle Berry (white mother from Liverpool, Black father from Cleveland) and Bob Marley (white English dad, Black Jamaican mum) are all, by universal agreement, as white as George Washington’s Sunday-go-to-meeting-wig.

Hell, Camo Harris probably isn’t a real American, either, not like Dinesh D’Souza.

He may have been born in Mumbai, India, and his last name may be Portuguese, but his deep love for his adopted country impelled him to commit a felony, and there’s nothing more American than criminal election interference!

Plus, he did this nation a service by explaining that Barack Obama (who, since he’s the son of a Kenyan and a Kansan, also isn’t really Black, except for politically) is an “anti-colonialist,” someone who believes that the First World shouldn’t go around subjugating the people and stealing the resources of the Third World.


Obama and Comma La aren’t real Americans like John Eastman, either.

Eastman authored the now notorious Newsweek piece explaining that despite what you may have heard about the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution — or even what the text says about how “all persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States” — that’s not what it means.

Certain unkind persons have suggested that Mr. Eastman is just mad because when he ran for California Attorney General in 2010, he lost.

Carmelita Harris won.

But that’s so unfair: Real Americans know the Fourteenth Amendment doesn’t apply to people 1. whose parents come from countries near China and/or the home of reggae; 2. With too many vowels in their names; and 3. Who make fallacious claims to Blackness.

In any case, we need to clean up that “birthright citizenship” stuff and make it where only certain people, people who fit into American culture in certain ways or else have beaucoup cash or other, er, assets, get to call themselves “American.”

Melania Trump, say.

She qualified for an EB-1, “Einstein Visa,” reserved for the best in their fields.

Melania is the classiest of First Ladies.

Completely unlike Michelle Obama: so angry, so divisive, so married to Barack Obama, who ruined the whole country by giving people health care and letting gays marry and ridding the world of Osama bin Laden and trying to fix climate change and saving the auto industry and God knows what all.

I guess Michelle’s Black, though: Her brother was a power forward at Princeton and later coached college basketball.

That sounds reasonably Black.

But Sen. Caramba Harris? No way.

See, here in Trumpamerica, we prefer people whose people have been here a long time, or came from one of the non-crappy countries: Scotland, for example. Slovenia. Norway. Or Germany.

Immigrants who forget anyone in their family ever emigrated.

Not people who talk about coming from Foreign Parts.

But Shamala Harris has one thing in common with Michelle Obama (and a lot of other women who totally failed at being “suburban housewives”): She is, as our president never tires of pointing out, “very nasty” and “horrible” and mean to innocent, beer-loving, progress-hating white men like Brett Kavanaugh and William Barr.

Is this the kind of person we want a heartbeat away from the presidency? A sharp, cosmopolitan, Berkeley-trained lawyer from a family of scholars and activists determined to make the world better?

She might change things!

And we can’t have that.

Diane Roberts
Diane Roberts is an 8th-generation Floridian, born and bred in Tallahassee, which probably explains her unhealthy fascination with Florida politics. Educated at Florida State University and Oxford University in England, she has been writing for newspapers since 1983, when she began producing columns on the legislature for the Florida Flambeau. Her work has appeared in the New York Times, the Times of London, the Guardian, the Washington Post, the Oxford American, and Flamingo. She has been a member of the Editorial Board of the St. Petersburg Times–back when that was the Tampa Bay Times’s name–and a long-time columnist for the paper in both its iterations. She was a commentator on NPR for 22 years and continues to contribute radio essays and opinion pieces to the BBC. Roberts is also the author of four books, most recently Dream State, an historical memoir of her Florida family, and Tribal: College Football and the Secret Heart of America. She lives in Tallahassee, except for the times she runs off to Great Britain, desperate for a different government to satirize.