Truthout: Trump’s Anti-Blackness Is Overt in Protest Response and Covert in Policymaking

Truthout, June 2, 2020: Trump’s Anti-Blackness Is Overt in Protest Response and Covert in Policymaking

Over the weekend, President Trump used his bully pulpit to openly fantasize about the Secret Service siccing “vicious dogs” on demonstrators outside the White House who were protesting police brutality following the killing of George Floyd in Minnesota last week. Trump’s calls for violence against protesters reflect the anti-Blackness of economic policies he and the GOP have relentlessly pursued since 2016, including recent attempts to destroy public sector jobs and to make discrimination in lending nearly impossible to catch. …

… The Trump administration has also been busy creating new barriers to housing for Black and Brown U.S. residents. The Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) was enacted in 1977 in response to racist, government-created redlining to ensure banks are not discriminatory in their lending. Many banks ran afoul of the CRA during the last financial crisis, including OneWest, which is why advocacy groups cried foul when Trump chose former OneWest executive Joseph Otting to run the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, a banking regulator. Otting oversaw a dramatic overhaul of the CRA, allowing banks to reduce their lending to low-income communities, a move that faced wide condemnation by civil rights groups. After pushing through these changes that will almost certainly further widen the racial wealth gap and exacerbate the problems of banking while Black, Otting resigned mid-pandemic, telling staff he planned to play lots of golf and tennis. Otting’s lasting legacy will be his efforts to make discrimination in mortgages and bank lending more likely — hopefully it won’t be a lasting legacy; the National Community Reinvestment Coalition has already announced it will sue to block the rule.

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