Two weeks ago, while speaking to Revd Al Sharpton’s National Action Network, America’s ambassador to the United Nations said ‘When we raise issues of equity and justice at the global scale, we have to approach them with humility. We have to acknowledge that we are an imperfect union – and have been since the beginning — and every day we strive to make ourselves more perfect, and more just.’
She said that she had recently spoken to the UN General Assembly about growing up in the segregated South adding ‘I shared these stories and others to acknowledge, on the international stage, that I have personally experienced one of America’s greatest imperfections. I have seen for myself how the original sin of slavery weaved white supremacy into our founding documents and principles.’
America’s ambassador to the United Nations believing that our country’s founding documents are permeated with white supremacy. That should have been quite the story — but, aside from a few conservative outlets, the media largely ignored Thomas-Greenfield’s outburst.
The ambassador did appear last Sunday on Face the Nation where she defended her remarks as ‘a powerful message. Imagine any other country doing that.’
That is the point. No other country would have their UN representative publicly talking down their country. No one other country self-flagellates like America does. No other country has high ranking officials who pretty openly hate it. Talking loudly about how terrible we are seems to be a very American affliction, especially in the new Biden era.
‘The uniqueness of our country is that we can self-criticize and we can move forward,’ she added on Face the Nation. But can we? The idea that our founding is inherently racist is the kind of incendiary nonsense that gets trotted out for groups such as Sharpton’s. Al Sharpton’s role in American public life has been to make sure that we don’t move forward. He makes his living by keeping us glued to the past. It’s standard fare.
But Linda Thomas-Greenfield is not just some activist hack. She is, let’s repeat, the US ambassador to the United Nations — and she was confirmed by a 78 to 20 Senate vote. Where were the Republicans to ask the obvious questions of her?
What American values will the Ambassador represent on the world stage? Which part of America’s amazing legacy does she consider the most important? Is America an inherently racist country?
Republicans have spent so much time deriding ‘cancel culture’ that they now seem afraid to call for firings lest they side with the cancel warriors. But calling for Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield to be fired has nothing to do with ‘cancel culture.’
It’s not like we discovered that she had tweeted these comments as a teenager and are now coming for her job. Being America’s ambassador to the United Nation is a specific role that requires being America’s booster on the world stage. Someone who believes America’s founding documents are ‘weaved’ with white supremacy is unable to fulfill that role. Why should China listen to anything the Ambassador of an intrinsically racist country has to say? Why should anyone? There’s a difference between an activist making these kinds of comments on Twitter and the ambassador of the United Nations.
It’s not normal for America’s representative to the world to believe this about our founding. America has been a beacon of freedom to people of all races and our founding documents set the bar for that freedom. Our legacy doesn’t demand ‘humility’ — we can and should be proud of America’s commitment to liberty. We should openly say so and urge other countries to follow our lead.
Thomas-Greenfield’s comments are disgraceful and she should be relieved of her duties. She should be canceled. She won’t be, of course.