Leading Black politicians and clergy held a conference call on Tuesday to strategize on how to fight back against President Donald Trump. According to Rep. Cedric Richmond (D-La.), chair of the Congressional Black Caucus, the nation is in a “moment of real crisis.”
However, Richmond said Black people are not unfamiliar with pushing back against the government.
“We are not unaccustomed to fights, but this time the stakes are a lot higher,” said Richmond.
Richmond also said Trump was going to throw so many issues at the Black community it was important that civic groups become active.
“We’re going to have to get real vocal,” he said.
Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.), a long-standing member of the Black Caucus, also spoke on the call. She thanked Black ministers who traveled to Washington, D.C., to participate in the hearings for Trump’s nominee for attorney general Sen. Jeff Sessions. She said coming to the nation’s capital and seeing how the government operates had been a valuable learning experience for them.
Waters didn’t mince words in her criticism of Trump.
“We are entering one of the most difficult periods of time in our history,” said Waters.
She also bashed the president for his past behavior, which included using vulgar language towards women and mocking a disabled reporter.
“This president is ruthless,” Waters added. “He is a man who knows nothing about decency and honor.”
She attributed Trump’s rise his ability to tap into the frustration of working-class White people, who feel they have been left behind by the economy and feel threatened by the nation’s changing demographics.
Waters also lambasted Trump’s cabinet picks such as Sessions, who she called a “throwback;” Betsy DeVos, who she said knows nothing about public education, and Dr. Ben Carson, “who doesn’t have a clue about HUD.”
“I’m not going to have any mercy on him (Carson.)” she said.
Waters also called Steve Mnuchin nominee for Treasury secretary, “the biggest foreclosure king.”
She added that Congress is currently tied up with confirmation hearings for Trump’s nominees, but she urged Democrats to hold their own hearings focusing on issues they feel are important. Waters also urged the public to connect with their elected representatives, through emails and phone calls, and make their voices and opinions heard.
Dr. Frederick Haynes III of the Friendship-West Baptist Church in Dallas, Texas, is following up on Waters suggestions and says he plans to organize hearings to discuss how the repeal of the Affordable Care Act (AFA) would affect people in his community. He added it was important to remind people that Obamacare and the AFA are the same thing.