Charlottesville's mayor is displeased with her city
Charlottesville, Virginia is home to the University of Virginia. Like all modern college towns, it's a mix of wealthy leftists (mostly White) and a lot of other people, students and townies, living in squalor. It hit the media big time in 2017 because of a clash between White supremacists and leftists that allowed the media to tar Trump falsely as a White supremacist. It's in the news again because its first Black mayor, Nikuyah Walker, thinks her city is a filthy, racist hellhole. Looking at the city's politics and demographics, she's probably got a point.
Unless you come from Virginia or attended the University of Virginia, you probably never thought much about Charlottesville. The city, named after George III's wife, came into being in 1762. It was home to Thomas Jefferson and James Madison. Their houses still stand and are beautiful examples of Southern colonial architecture.
After the Civil War, as was true for all Democrat-run Southern towns, the city was run along strictly racial lines.
It finally yielded to the reality of civil rights in the 1960s. Nowadays, like all American college towns, the city is very leftist, which means that it is completely on board with the new Democrat party's pro-Black, anti-White policies. Its demographics are approximately 70% White, 19% Black, and 11% other. Many in the Black population are impoverished (as are many Asians, Whites, Hispanics, and mixed-race people).
In 2017, disputes about statues honoring the Confederacy came to a head around a plan to remove a statue of Robert E. Lee. An openly White supremacist group got permission to march in the town, demanding that the statue remain. That protest drew counter-protesters, as well as people who held that, while slavery, the Confederacy, Jim Crow, and racism were all bad, it was a mistake to tear down a nation's history willy-nilly. A White supremacist drove into the crowd, killing a young woman.
After the event, President Trump repeatedly condemned White supremacists. However, he accurately noted that there were some good people there who simply opposed mob action against public art. The media took this last statement, isolated it, and falsely painted Trump as a White supremacist in a hoax that has sustained leftist hatred to this day. That hoax, incidentally, is Ground Zero for the dangerous canard that all Trump-supporters — that is, all 75–80 million people who voted for him — are radical White supremacists who must be destroyed.
In 2018, a Black Charlottesville native named Nikuyah Walker ran for mayor, and, in a city with Whites anxious to gain forgiveness for the city's sins, she won. Walker, a single mother of three children, gave an interesting interview to The Guardian. She spoke about the challenges of growing up in Charlottesville and the overwhelming poverty dogging Blacks in her city. Her whole campaign — with its slogan "Unmasking the Illusion" — was intended to expose the city's problems.
Walker deeply resented the city's affluent white liberals, who talk the talk but refuse to walk the walk:
One of the main things that I'm here to do is to call attention to the liberal progressive Democratic structure that's in place, that believes that their best intentions are enough. You need actions behind those intentions. You can't just use words.
It's very easy for people to blame [the white nationalist] Richard Spencer and Jason Kessler [the organizer of last year's white supremacist rally], but they haven't been in charge here.
Today, three years into her mayoral term, Walker seems disillusioned. This tweet replicates a post she uploaded to Facebook, only to have Facebook delete it:
— Mayor Nikuyah Walker (@NikuyahWalkerCC) March 24, 2021
Undeterred, after Facebook backed down, Walker posted the entire poem, one that castigates her city as one suffering badly from White liberalism, on both Facebook and Twitter:
You know what? While Walker isn't your normal mayor, boosting her city, she's got a point: whenever White leftists are in charge, Blacks fare poorly. These leftist Whites are the true White supremacists. They make all the right noises but routinely treat Blacks as useful idiots, best kept ignorant. White leftists are the perfect throwback to the Antebellum and Jim Crow eras, with their low-key segregation (driven today by economic differences, not laws) and the soft bigotry of their low expectations.
Mayor Walker lacks tact, and I suspect that, because she's also a leftist, she hasn't done a bit of good elevating the Blacks in her community. Nevertheless, she's probably correct when she describes her city in terms that make it clear it's analogous to Berkeley, California: it's filled with powerful Whites allied with the college, all paying lip service to civil rights and Black Lives Matter, but offering much less to Blacks than would a conservative community in which there's real liberty, equality, and economic uplift.
Image: Mayor Walker's shorter poem. Twitter screen grab.