Welcome to our new normal.
Even NFL players are targets of racial hatred four weeks after Donald Trump was elected president.
Nikita Whitlock, a 25-year-old running back for the New York Giants and a father of two young children, returned to his New Jersey apartment this week to find a scrawled message of white supremacy: “KKK,” “Go back to Africa,” “f—— n—–” and a swastika were written behind in his basement.
Whitlock, his wife and kids were out for the evening but arrived home to find their apartment vandalized and greeted with the N-word.
“It just re-establishes that no matter where you are, no matter who you are, this can happen to you,” Whitlock told CBS New York.
He also tweeted: “Racism is real and instead of close to home this time they came inside. My family is safe but we are saddened by the hate. Thanks to the Moonachie Police Department for all of your help! #Haters #Racism #AllLivesMatter #BlackLivesMatter #SidelineRacism.”
These are troubling times.
“It’s very disgusting actually, it’s very disheartening,” Whitlock’s wife, Ashley, told CBS. “You hear about things that do happen but you never think ‘Oh, this is going to happen to me.’ ”
Ironically, Whitlock is biracial. His mother is white.
Messages of white supremacy have intensified since Trump won the election. For 16 months, Trump’s campaign provided a platform for white nationalists and they have become more emboldened because they helped their candidate win the White House.
Earlier this week, for example, white nationalist Richard Spencer spoke at Texas A&M University. Although many students protested Spencer’s bigoted speech, he still delivered a message of hate.
Spencer’s previous speeches included this passage: “America was, until this past generation, a white country designed for ourselves and our posterity. It is our creation, it is our inheritance, and it belongs to us.”
During a press conference before Spencer’s speech, he called Trump “a kind of alt-right hero.” Trump, Spencer said, has a “deep connection” with the alt-right because of his commitment to white superiority.
Last month, in Wiggins, Mississippi, four white public school students put a noose around the neck of a Black student and yanked it tight.
The NAACP wants a federal investigation, saying the students in the alleged attack haven’t been expelled, school officials didn’t report it to law enforcement nor have they told the victim’s parents what kind of disciplinary action would be taken.
“They failed to protect this student throughout this ordeal,” the organization said in a statement. “Allowing students to commit blatant hate crimes without severe consequences, sends a message to students that their safety and well-being are not valuable enough to be protected.”
And let’s not forget the recent murder of William Sims, a popular 28-year-old musician from Oakland, California who was shot to death by a white man. The police have classified the murder as a racial hate crime.
Whitlock said he covered up the swastika so his 6-year-old son wouldn’t see it. The burglars took money and jewelry but it was the racist messages that will probably haunt Whitlock and his family for some time.
“It’s about to be 2017,” Nikita Whitlock said. “Oppression, violence, racism, hatred, violence — there’s no need for that.”
Sounds reminiscent of Jim Crow. Sounds like history repeating itself.
What do you think?
PHOTOS: NIkita Whitlock Instagram