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Today people have continued to call for @GovernorVA to resign outside the Governor’s Mansion. This morning environmental activists stood firm in their stance for Northam to resign. His apologies aren’t enough because this isn’t just about ONE photo. (1/
Environmental activists have been fighting against the Atlantic Coast Pipeline because of the harmful impact to the Union Hill community. The community pleas to stop the pipeline have gone ignored. (2/
Their contention is that Ralph Northam and other VA politicians have continued to ignore the cries of the people in the face of corporate money. Despite having called out inconsistencies and other issues, community concerns continue to be ignored. (3/
From what I have seen in my limited experience with their movement, is the messaging from these long-standing environmental efforts is that the system is corrupt and Dominion Energy has effectively bought all the elected officials with campaign donations and back door deals. (4/
Additionally, the perspective is that failure for elected officials and people to stand up against Dominion Energy or the media to call it out, is because fundamentally people are okay with taking money when it is black people’s lives and livelihood on the line. (5/
Here is an example of this racism and bias playing out: Northam fired 2 individuals who were questioning Dominion right before a pivotal board meeting. His answers on why were weak at best. There was a lot of outrage and outcry but it mostly went away.(6…
This is Virginia politics way. Ignore communities of color because you can since historic systems have been set up in a very racist past that we refuse to acknowlege. These pre-existing conditions make it dangerous for people who are racially insensitive to be in power. (7/
THAT is one reason why this matters directly as we allow the governor to waffle on if he will or won’t stay in office. It isn’t just this photo. Him arguing this one photo like this will go away is exactly why people will continue calling for his resignation. (8/
Because he has ALREADY SHOWN who he is by his policies. His past actions, substantiate the character of who he is. While there have been suspicions and implications, the photos further cement in the context of his past actions. (9/ 🧜🏻‍♀️
While the media continues to focus on the Governor’s statements and defenses and the intrigue about things like facial recognition, communities continue to be ignored. In fact, at the end of the action event today as people disbursed, I witnessed part of an interaction (10/ 🧜🏻‍♀️
where a protestor was calling a media member out on, from what I gathered, saying these things didn’t matter. Allowing Northam’s power and money to run this narrative is the exact racism people have been fighting in Virginia politics. (11/ 🧜🏻‍♀️
So. What’s the point? My point is this story is so much deeper and scarier than the media is portraying. We have to stop and listen to communities who have been fighting because this is a larger story and system. (12/ 🧜🏻‍♀️
It will be an absolute shame if those in power in VA are yet again allowed to run the narrative. If people listened and believed community concerns,that would be a different conversation in the national spotlight that could advance progress. (13/ 🧜🏻‍♀️
Instead here we are debating about if the governor should or shouldn’t resign because of photos he now denies being in because he did blackface at another point in his life but he doesn’t think it’s blackface..., it’s darkening of the skin. AND HE ALMOST MOONWALKED. (14/ 🧜🏻‍♀️
The level of absurdity we are at is proof positive that we have to change this convo. The ONLY way to do that is if the media supports communities doing existing work and stops to listen and understand what they have been saying all along. That includes myself. (15/ 🧜🏻‍♀️
I urge everyone to dig into the environmental racism that is happening in Union Hill. I don’t know as much about it as I should so I’ll be learning too. (16/ 🧜🏻‍♀️
We must stand together and STOP ALLOWING POLITICIANS to use communities as PAWNS in their political gains. We need media to help the COMMUNITIES run the narrative. You need to listen and scrutinize. What happened to the days of the media working as a watchdog against the govt? 🧜🏻‍♀️
It shouldn’t even matter which side is right or wrong when we are holding our elected government officials accountable. The media has resources to explore and unearth information. Instead of using that to find out if the governor should be exonerated for his actions (17/ 🧜🏻‍♀️
(that’s Ralph’s problem to prove) they should be in a watch dog role, the media should use resources to help the community hold elected officials accountable for their actions. This dynamic had gotten so twisted because of corporate greed and money making from headlines. (18/ 🧜🏻‍♀️
The stories media tells about the disenfranchised and marginalized should hold equal weight to those voices of politicians. The current media coverage in this, and similar climates shows they value positions of power. (19/ 🧜🏻‍♀️
Further, observing how the system and failure to act in situations and the impact that has is just as much of a story as the headline the media shows.

So, I ask, if not this situation with blackface, what will it take for the media to dig into our government’s issues? (20/20)🧜🏻‍♀️
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