So now, I’m seeing the Mitt Romney signs go up –and one that especially sticks with me is the one that says “Believe in America.”
If ever there was a sign with racist code and rank hypocrisy rolled into one phrase, that one is it.
That slogan resonates with people who believe that to choose President Obama, a Christian black guy with an Arabic middle name over Romney, the white Mormon, is to discard what America is supposed to stand for; which in their mind is a country where white men are supposed to be leaders and black men are supposed to be lackeys.
Yet from what I’ve been able to tell so far, if anyone stands out as a symbol of disbelief in America, it’s Romney.
If the presumptive Republican presidential nominee truly believed in America, he wouldn’t be stashing his money in overseas bank accounts to avoid paying taxes that the middle class Americans whose votes he’s seeking have to pay.
If he believed in America, he wouldn’t have advocated that General Motors and Chrysler, pillars of the U.S. automobile industry, be allowed to go bankrupt.
And if he truly believed in America, he’d come clean about his finances and trust Americans to draw their own conclusions about his wealth.
Yet Romney isn’t having any of that.
Maybe that’s because the meager information that some investigations have revealed might lead people to further scrutinize whether he believes in America.
According to a recent report by Vanity Fair, 55 pages of his 2010 tax return, which he released only after relentless prodding by his GOP opponents, are devoted to reporting transactions with foreign entities.
There’s also a $3 million Swiss bank account, and the tax havens of Bermuda, Luxembourg, and the Cayman Islands, where Romney and his family have assets, but which bear the tagline, “Value: not disclosed in tax returns.”
Also, according to Vanity Fair, Romney and his wife, Ann, paid $6.2 million in federal taxes on $42 million in income. That means they paid an average tax rate lower than 15 percent, which is less than what most middle class taxpayers pay.
So then, how can Romney muster the nerve to campaign under the slogan, “Believe in America,” when it’s clear that, at least when it comes to his money and to him paying the taxes that are necessary to keep the streets paved and the U.S. functioning above Third World level, he obviously doesn’t believe in it?
He can, because he’s counting on people, especially white people in the poorest red states, to vote on fear.
He’s counting on them to see his penchant for stashing money overseas and being mum about his wealth as a righteous attempt to avoid supporting a federal government they’ve hated since the Civil War and the 1960s.
He’s also counting on people to vote their frustrations; with the unemployment rate still unacceptably high at 8.2 percent, many will vote for change for the sake of change.
And Romney, as well as the Republican operatives behind him, are hoping that those who are duped by his “Believe in America,” slogan will show up at the polls in greater numbers than black people who may be frustrated by a 14.2 percent unemployment rate and efforts to suppress their vote.
I hope that doesn’t happen.
Now I don’t have a problem with Romney being wealthy. But I do have a problem with him apparently hiding his money in foreign countries to avoid paying taxes in the nation that made it possible for him to become a rich man.
Those aren’t the actions of someone who sees America as a place to believe in, but as a land of loopholes to be exploited.
It’s too bad that some folks will vote for Romney because of his whiteness, or out of their own frustrations – before realizing that.
Tonyaa Weathersbee is an award-winning columnist based in Jacksonville, Fla. Follow her at tonyaajw@twitter.
Also On Black America Web:
This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (10/15-10/21)
31 photos Launch gallery
1. Just a NY girl with BIG dreams....
1 of 31
2. HAPPY CHILDREN=QUALITY PARENTING. We don't always see eye to eye on everything and that's normal. We're human beings. But we come together and do it right for what's important, the kids. We are not enemies, we are parents. And we are parents 1st. S/O to @monyettashaw for making Mason's bday memorable. S/O to @itscrystalsmith at home taking care of our other lil' Prince. ❤️❤️❤️ THIS IS WHAT CO-PARENTING LOOKS LIKE. #Blessed #Happy #AboveTheDrama #BiggerThanUs
2 of 31
3. So happy to finally be able to share with you all that I’m the new Global Brand Ambassador for @Revlon! Follow my day on RevlonSnaps. Yay! Choose Love, Everybody! #RevlonXCiara #chooselove #ad
3 of 31
4. Glam on point!!!@makeupbymotoko & @shaylinjoneshair #easybreezy @lifetimetv #beachesmovie #january2017 😘
4 of 31
5. ✨True love ✨📸: @jessiemarrerophotography
5 of 31
6 of 31
7. Today was not easy..but by the grace of God we all got through it. Words cannot express our gratitude for all of your Prayers, Positive thoughts and Support for us throughout the years. Tommy will be missed but most certainly never forgotten...And PLEASE don't ask "Where's Martin?.." he was there too...just not in this picture. Lol! God bless you all.. #LoveConquersAll #MartinShow
7 of 31
8 of 31
9. West coast get ready for #RockyHorror. I will be live tweeting again. #letsdothetimewarpagain
9 of 31
10. #THEKEYS pre order yours now ... Available everywhere #NOV22 #WeTheBest 🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑
10 of 31
11. We about to ROCK at #KCABlackBall!! All for our life-changing effort to end 🌎 AIDS.
11 of 31
12. Today's #SNAPJACK is brought to you by @yazzthegreatest 😂😂😂💋💋💋
12 of 31
13. Damn girl you kinda old to be headed to the Go Go. You coming in at the age they leaving. LMAO
13 of 31
14. Daddy daycare B-Boxin with @acewellstucker @shopraisingace
14 of 31
15. #FBF Naviyd & URV "LIL MONSTERS"
15 of 31
16. HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ONE OF THE BIGGEST LEGENDS IN OUR HIPHOP HISTORY! @snoopdogg CONTINUED BLESSING AND LOVE FAMILY!!!!! REAL OG!
16 of 31
17. Thank you for a beautiful night VSU! Let's do it again! #HOMECOMING
17 of 31
18. Had a great time this morning with my familia Erica, Griff & Truth!!
18 of 31
19. Check out my interview on @essence facebook live. #inmyownwords #nycpromo #day2
19 of 31
20. #She💋 #tbt #TheCoveAtTheAtlantis #DawgPawsAndAll
20 of 31
21. Bae #retailtherapy
21 of 31
22. Why me and @coryhardrict got the same pose... and notee... new mouth #naked
22 of 31
23. When my husband is my personal 'hype-man'! it kills me every time! 💜😂 #WHATNOW #lostfiles📷
23 of 31
24. Diggy Simmons
24 of 31
25. Hand full of @jacquieaiche 💙💎💍 @esnail_la 💅🏾
25 of 31
26. SuperSoulers! You can watch my interview with Carl Lentz live from my Facebook page, tomorrow at 11a ET| 8a PT. #SuperSoulSunday
26 of 31
27. 💋 .. When the friendship is easy like Sunday morning. ☀️
27 of 31
28. Sunday mornings are the best........... hugs and cuddles with my angel
28 of 31
29. #huggar16 #hellohuggars
29 of 31
30. My gym is everywhere!.. #RnBMoney #TheGeneral 📸: @twelvepastseven
30 of 31
31. Nothing I would rather be doing... Rocko setting up our movie, Romelō working on a puzzle & Laiyah singing and sharing all she's learning at school... I'm so grateful for the joy they've brought into my life ... Praying for peace , joy & love in the home of EVERY family ♥️ #HeadScarfPJSunday LOL 😂
31 of 31