Commenting on the 2017 inauguration boycott, NFL Hall of Famer and civil rights activist Jim Brown suggested that Congressman John Lewis should stop crying the blues over the election of Donald Trump to the presidency.
In an interview last week for NBC Meet the Press, Rep. Lewis declared that Trump is not a legitimate president and that Russia helped sabotage the Hillary Clinton campaign. Trump fired back on Twitter, accusing Lewis, a Democrat who has represented Georgia’s 5th Congressional District in the Atlanta area since 1987, as another all-talk, no-action politician, one of Trump’s familiar refrains from the campaign about lawmakers from both parties. The tweet ignited yet another controversy, and Trump was denounced in many media and political precincts.
Lewis and many of his colleagues have since decided to stay home rather than attend the Trump swearing-in ceremony tomorrow.
“Lewis’s status as a civil rights icon and Trump’s baffling attempts to suggest that the Georgia Democrat is more talk than action have only fueled the idea of Lewis as the last principled man in Washington,” the Washington Post noted.
On March 7, 1965, John Lewis was severely beaten by state troopers during a voting rights march across the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama.
In his remarks to CNN anchor Carol Costello, as reported by USA TODAY, self-described Hillary Clinton voter Jim Brown, 80, paid tribute to Lewis’ civil rights legacy, but also chided the congressman for insisting that Trump is an illegitimate president
“John Lewis has great history as a civil rights fighter. As a young man, he was one of the guys out there who really was leading the parades during the King era. So, we all respect his history. But then I hear him cry the blues about Mr. Trump and saying that it’s an illegitimate presidency, I take offense to that. If it’s illegitimate, why is it going on? If you’re going to impeach him, impeach him. If he did something wrong, arrest him. But don’t cry the blues because you did not get the the vote out, and this man had a genius way of winning the election.”
Watch the clip below, as well as the others, and draw your own conclusions.
Lewis and Trump should have a sit-down to try to work together “because it’s in the best interests of the country,” rather than for Lewis to just complain, the ex-Cleveland Browns superstar said. He also encouraged the congressmen and women to attend the 2017 inauguration of President Donald Trump out of respect for the office of the presidency and as an expression of unity for America.
Many in the social justice cohort expressed displeasure over Brown, as well as Steve Harvey and others, meeting with Trump in New York City.
Brown is throwing a pre-inauguration party today to benefit Brown’s Amer-I-Can empowerment foundation.
As alluded to above, Jim Brown met with Trump recently at Trump Tower to discuss issues in the African-American community after which he said the president-elect gained his admiration, CNN reported. On Monday, Brown told Varney & Company on the Fox Business Channel that “[Trump] won, in my opinion, fair and square, and I’m going to support him as president of the United States,” Breitbart News reported.
“When you win against all odds and you defeat those who are against you — and I was for Hillary so I’m one of those who Mr. Trump defeated — but he is the president-elect of the United States, I’m a citizen. I’m not asking him to do everything. I’m going to pitch in and do some of the things that I can do with the like-minded people that I represent,” Jim Brown added about the new president who he also described as flamboyant, controversial, and a little thin-skinned and reactionary.
Entirely separately, Mason Weaver, reportedly a former member of the Black Panther party whose Twitter page describes him as a Christian conservative, had some harsh words for John Lewis in an appearance with Tucker Carlson on the Fox News Channel, Fox News Insider reported.
“John Lewis — bless his heart — it took courage to do what he did early in life,” Weaver acknowledged.
“I’m outraged that the demonstration that he had early in his life has turned into a subjugation of his right and authority as a black leader,” Weaver asserted, however.
Weaver insisted that Lewis has joined up with “the oppressors,” because the government officials enforcing Jim Crow laws through the 1960s were all Democrats. He also accused Lewis as a Member of Congress of “presiding over the destruction of black America, and you owe us an apology” since Lewis, as Weaver sees it, has done “nothing” to improve inner city black communities.
“[John Lewis] is more concerned about Trump being the illegitimate president but John Lewis is the illegitimate Congressman,” Mason Weaver declared.
Crystal Wright, who runs the Conservative Black Chick blog, also expressed similar sentiments, Real Clear Politics detailed.
“John Lewis’ comments about President-elect Donald Trump are completely disrespectful. And apparently only thinks a legitimate presidency would only be one that Hillary Clinton was running. And, you know, what I want to know is what has John Lewis done since he marched on Selma? Really. He’s riding on the coattails of something that happened over 50 years ago. And it’s just — to me, his position in Congress is illegitimate…”
North Carolina YouTube stars Diamond and Silk also weighed in on the John Lewis-Donald Trump controversy.
Reacting to the revelation in a Trump tweet that John Lewis also boycotted George W. Bush’s 2001 swearing-in, the Washington Post added that “None of that takes away from Lewis’s well-earned reputation as a man of principle. And nothing Lewis could say or do would erase his heroic efforts — often risking his own personal well-being — in the civil rights movement. But what the revelation does do is make it more difficult to paint his opposition to Trump in anything but a partisan way.”
Although the federal lawmakers have their reasons for staying away from the inauguration ceremony, some Beltway observers have deemed their absence a form of political theater, in that most if not all of them will be reliable “no” votes for the Trump agenda in Congress.
Against the backdrop of the inauguration 2017 boycott, and the viewpoints of John Lewis and Jim Brown, do you think that Donald Trump is an illegitimate president?
[Featured Image by Seth Wenig/AP Images]