The Open Assault on Civil Rights
While many of us remain in a constant state of angst about what is coming out of the White House these days — whether it is Trump’s ludicrous
tweets or the fact that Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller is ramping up his investigation of the president — we are watching a rapid erosion of
the civils rights gains made by President Barack Obama that moved this nation forward on a path to placing us on the right side of history.

Despite the fact that Trump has been doing everything he can to push the boundaries of his constitutional authority in the executive branch,
Congress has blocked him from firing his attorney general, Jefferson Beauregard Sessions. You may recall that Sessions’ confirmation hearing
was a real barn burner as many civil rights groups and others opposed his nomination due to his past racial animus. Sessions once referred to
the NAACP as Communists and was blatantly against the civil rights movement altogether. Nonetheless, his confirmation was approved by the
Senate along a near party-line vote of 52 to 47.

After having been caught in a lie about not having had any contact with the Russians during the 2016 presidential campaign, Sessions did the
only remaining ethical thing he could (besides resigning) and recused himself. His recusal would later put him directly in the crosshairs of
Trump as Mueller has recently impaneled a grand jury in the Russia probe. Trump has openly admitted that had he known Sessions would
recuse himself, he would have “gone in a different direction,” meaning that he would have chosen someone that would have pledged their
undying loyalty to him and fired Mueller. Trump has demonstrated that he will fire anyone and everyone who wants to keep investigating the
clear and convincing evidence, which is not what he describes as a hoax or fake news, but concrete evidence that his campaign met with the
Russians during the 2016 campaign despite having told multiple lies that they had not met with the Russians.

Special Prosecutor Mueller will soon be going after Trump’s tax returns. Trump and his cronies are saying that his finances are outside the
“scope of the investigation,” but Mueller will go wherever the investigation leads him and his team and will follow the money that many
believe will elucidate why Trump is so loyal to President Putin. We will see if that is the case or not, but the evidence does not look good for
Trump, which is why months after winning the election, he is still on the campaign trail returning to his base in states like West Virginia where
he recently held another campaign-style rally. During the campaign-style rally, he continued to bash his defeated and humiliated opponent,
Hilary Clinton which led to more chants of “lock her up!”

Sessions, despite the fact that he and the entire Justice Department are presently under siege from  Trump, is doing everything within its  
power to erase as much of the gains made in civil and human rights under President Obama as possible. After many decades of enforcing
court-enforced agreements that prohibited discrimination based on race, sex, class, sexual orientation and disabilities, the Justice Department,
led by Sessions, is turning away from consent decrees. These consent decrees were put in place to fight against workplace discrimination and
to hold police department’s accountable. Sessions was skeptical of the consent decrees because he felt the lawsuits filed against police
officers for excessive-use force would “undermine the respect for law enforcement.”  There are about 20 cities currently under a consent
decree according to the Blue Nation Review archive. These cities are under the decree due to indisputable evidence of human and civil rights
abuse.

As a nation, we must be ever mindful that while we are living in unprecedented times, we must remain vigilant and not become so distracted
at the chaotic state of the White House that we forget about the policy decisions being made that affect our daily lives. Stay awake!