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Birth of a Twitterstorm

Kamala Harris, race, debate, democratic, president, democracy,

“Kamala Harris is *not* an American Black. She is half Indian and half Jamaican,” tweeted Ali Alexander, a self-described black American activist, after the California Senator’s presidential debate performance. “I’m so sick of people robbing American Blacks (like myself) of our history.”*

On Friday, Donald Trump, Jr., retweeted Alexander’s tweet (before later deleting it). His traipsing into the details of Harris’s birth immediately sparked comparison to his father’s “birther attacks” suggesting that President Obama wasn’t born here.**

Seemingly, the entire Democratic presidential field was quick to condemn the tweet and Don Jr.’s retweet as “racist.” So did much of the media. Although months ago, CNN’s Don Lemon argued, “Jamaica is not America.”

The New York Times article identified Ali Alexander only as an “alt-right fringe figure” and “a member of a right-wing constellation of media personalities,” but nowhere informed readers he is African-American.

“This stuff about Harris, about her status, about her blackness,” Jason Johnson, politics editor of, told Joy Reid on MSNBC, “that’s about black people.”

In fact, on Reid’s program back in February, Johnson was part of a discussion about the senator’s — gasp! — white husband. “She needs to find a strong black man advocate,” advised Tiffany Cross, co-founder and managing editor of The Beat DC. “Let’s just be candid,” Johnson remarked, “it’s not going to be her [white] husband.”

How important is the color of a person’s skin or their ancestry or the skin color of their spouse to that person’s fitness to be president?

It only matters to racists.

This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.

* “Kamala Harris,” Alexander also pointed out, “comes from Jamaican Slave Owners.” True enough, but how is she responsible for what her ancestors did? Would it matter if she supported . . . reparations?

** For the record, Sen. Harris was born in Oakland, California, which was then and is still part of the United States of America.

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Kamala Harris, race, debate, democratic, president, democracy,

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