An Al Sharpton guest has the early lead for today’s most simultaneously inflammatory and nonsensical statement.
Ras Baraka, mayor of Newark, NJ, said that in clamping down on sanctuary cities such as his, the Trump administration is “trying to intimidate us into being what I’ve called fugitive slave catchers.”
Not only is the image abhorrent, it is utterly illogical. By enforcing the immigration laws, the Trump admin is not seeking to force illegal immigrants into uncompensated labor. To the contrary, the goal is to deport them.
Far from challenging Baraka over his repellent metaphor, Sharpton adopted it, asking Baraka what will happen if the Trump admin starts cutting federal funds “because you won’t break rank and do what you said, [be] a fugitive slave kind of” catcher.
Note Baraka’s smile as he says “what I’ve called” fugitive slave catchers. So Baraka has used this vile phrase before and is well-pleased with himself about it.
AL SHARPTON: Newark, New Jersey’s Mayor Ras Baraka . . . The president has gone out of his way, the attorney general Jeff sessions actually threatened mayors like you of sanctuary cities turning off certain funding. Why are they targeting you?
RAS BARAKA: I think them targeting sanctuary cities a way for them to tell mayors and folks around the country that they’re sticking to what I think is an un-American and unconstitutional policy and trying to intimidate us into being what I’ve called fugitive slave catchers.
. . .
SHARPTON: What happens if they start cutting your federal funds because you won’t break rank and do what you said, [be] a fugitive slave kind of” [catcher]?