John Conyers
Getty Images

Congressional Black Caucus Members Claim Rep. John Conyers Faces Racial Double Standard

Some say Conyers is being subjected to harsher scrutiny than white politicians facing similar sexual harrassment allegations. 

The resignation of Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.), who announced his retirement Tuesday (Dec. 5) amid mounting allegations of sexual harassment, has ignited a debate over racial double standards.

Members of the Congressional Black Caucus see a hypocrisy in the response to allegations against Conyers, as opposed to multiple sexual harassment claims brought following white politicians like former Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.).

Franken announced his resignation Thursday (Dec. 7), but the push to remove Conyers was swifter by comparison. While House Speaker Paul Ryan called for Conyers immediate resignation, but has been he's been Congressman Blake Farenthold (R-Texas), who used $84,000 in taxpayer funds to settle as sexual harassment and gender discrimination lawsuit filed by a former aide in 2014. The House Ethics Committee has launched an investigation into the allegations. Farenthold promised to pay back the money used to settle the suit.

Though Ryan has called  for  Senate hopeful Roy Moore to drop out of the race after accusations of pedophilia, Moore garnered endorsements from President Donald Trump and the Republican National Committee.

"Certainly it seems as if there is indeed a double standard," Rep. Marcia Fudge (D-Ohio), former CBC chair, said in reference to Conyers. “When it happens to one of us, we're guilty until proven innocent.”

Conyers' wife, Monica, had similar feelings towards the media camping outside of her home. “Do you all go and stalk other people’s houses?’’ she asked the press who were staked outside of her house last month, according to the Detroit Free Press. “Do you go and stalk white people’s houses or just come to the black neighborhoods and stalk our houses?”

Lat month, BuzzFeed News reported that in 2015, Conyers used $27,000 of taxpayer-funds to settle a wrongful dismissal suit from an ex-staffer who says she was fired after refusing his sexual advances. Other women have also lodged harassment claims against Conyers, including a former intern who says he propositioned her in a car in 2001.

As the longest serving member of Congress, and an instrumental figure in the Civil Rights Movement, 88-year-old Conyers doesn’t feel that the allegations can harm his legacy.

“My legacy can’t be compromised or diminished in any way by what we’re going through now,” he said in an interview with Detroit radio host Mildred Gaddis. “This, too, shall pass. My legacy will continue through my children.”

From the Web

More on Vibe

Win McNamee

Sybrina Fulton Is Running For Office In Florida

Since Trayvon Martin's murder in 2012, Sybrina Fulton has dedicated her life to preserving her son's legacy. Now, Fulton is taking it one step further as she's announced she's running for office in Florida.

“Since 2012, I have advocated tirelessly to empower our communities and make them safer,” Fulton said to The Miami Herald. “But the work is not done. I am proud to announce that I will run to represent District 1 on the county commission.”

"Our county must continue moving forward so our families are safe from violence, can afford to live in Miami-Dade, and have access to good paying jobs,” she continued. “I am ready to take on these issues and many others in county government.”

Fulton will run against Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez during the 2020 election, a seat which will be vacated by Commissioner Barbara Jordan in the same year.

Fulton, alongside Trayvon's father Tracy, found themselves the focus of media attention in 2012 when 17-year-old Trayvon was racially profiled, followed and shot by self-appointed neighborhood watchmen George Zimmerman.

Unarmed Trayvon was staying with his father in central Florida when on the night of Feb 26, he went to a local convenience store and crossed paths with Zimmerman.

Zimmerman was taken into custody by police that night but later released. It would months later in April when Zimmerman was formally arrested and charged. On July 13, 2013,  Zimmerman was acquitted of all charges.

Continue Reading
Rich Polk

Tomi Lahren Slams Alabama's Abortion Law

Across the nation, several states have passed laws either banning abortions or making it illegal for a woman to have an abortion at six-week, or eight-weeks as seen in Missouri. The strict laws, mostly passed by Republican men (and in Alabama's, case signed into effect by a female Gov. Kay Ivey) have deepened the divide on the hot-button issue, and aim to overturn the 1973 U.S. Supreme Court Roe vs. Wade ruling.

Thursday afternoon (May 16) Tomi Lahren took to social media to offer her take on the restrive abortion laws and bans taking place across the country, and surprisingly the conservative host offered a liberal take.

I will be attacked by fellow conservatives for saying this but so be it, this Alabama abortion ban is too restrictive. It doesn’t save life, it simply forces women into more dangerous methods, other states or countries. You don’t encourage life via blanket government mandate!

— Tomi Lahren (@TomiLahren) May 16, 2019

"I will be attacked by fellow conservatives for saying this but so be it, this Alabama abortion ban is too restrictive. It doesn’t save a life, it simply forces women into more dangerous methods, other states or countries. You don’t encourage life via blanket government mandate," Lahren tweeted.

Lahren's tweet merited a collective digital eyebrow raise and caused her to trend, with naysayers.

*see’s tomi lahren is trending*me: ah she mustve said some dumb shit again

Tomi Lahren: actually this abortion law is terrible

All of twitter: pic.twitter.com/o8kUAZ3aQa

— 😈🇵🇷 (@JUL2523) May 16, 2019

https://twitter.com/needyychanel/status/1129113230993960966

The end of days is near...

I have *agreed* with a Tomi Lahren tweet. #AbortionIsAWomansRight https://t.co/5pkY2MguXr

— BrooklynDad_Defiant! (@mmpadellan) May 16, 2019

Yet, despite her speaking out against Alabama or the other restrictive abortion laws, some took to Twitter to remind others that Lahren's views haven't changed just because she doesn't abortion laws.

Even though Tomi Lahren believes Alabama abortion ban is to restrictive she needs to remember - she votes and promotes the Republicans agenda. She knows they’ve wanted Roe V Wade over turned and she’s helped get theses douche bags elected!

— SAM6 (@travelong6) May 16, 2019

Continue Reading
Getty

AOC Slams Georgia's 6-Week Abortion Ban: 'There Are Tons Of Ways This Law Ignores Basic Biology'

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp signed a controversial piece of legislation into law Tuesday which would ban abortions after six weeks. Known as the "fetal heartbeat bill," the Republican governor said the state's new law "values life."

"We protect the innocent, we champion the vulnerable, we stand up and speak for those that are unable to speak for themselves." the Republican governor said.

The bill challenges the landmark 1973 Roe v Wade Supreme Court decision, which made abortions illegal. After the signing of the bill, Rep. Ocasio-Cortez took to Twitter to blast the legislative measure.

"Six weeks pregnant equals two-weeks late on your period," the 29-year-old congresswoman tweeted. "Most of the men writing these bills don’t know the first thing about a woman’s body outside of the things they want from it. It’s relatively common for a woman to have a late period + not be pregnant."

Ocasio-Cortez further continued her attack on the ban by stating the law doesn't respect basic science.

"If you were sexually assaulted (stress delays cycle), took a morning-after pill (throws off cycle), or have an irregular cycle, you‘d have no idea. There are a TON of ways this law ignores basic biology."

The bill is supposed to go into effect in January 2020, yet Elisabeth Smith, chief counsel at the Center for Reproductive Rights told CBS via email she plans to challenge prior.

"Bans like this have always been blocked by courts. We will be suing Georgia to make sure this law has the same fate," she said.

Continue Reading

Top Stories