During Clint Eastwood’s psychotic episode speech at the RNC this year, he pretended to address President Obama by talking to an empty chair. If the symbolism of a white man talking down to a powerful person of color didn’t send the message of racism home for you, then consider the aftermath. Eastwood used the chair to put President Obama “in his place,” while other white folks are taking this spectacle of racism to another level. The first photo shows an empty chair in Virginia with an obvious target, the second photo shows an empty chair from Texas has a less visible target. The common denominators are: Obama, lynching, and anti-Black racism.
Attention white folks: we know exactly what we’re doing when we hang shit from trees, we don’t get to take this behavior out of historical context, and we need to understand that a Black president does not mean the end of racism when this kind of racial violence continues to go down. Sometimes a picture isn’t worth a thousand words. “Racism still exists” are three words these combined pictures are worth. If you’re still unconvinced and still looking for proof, then you might consider that you have no idea what you’re looking for.