I have had mixed feelings about White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders being turned away at a restaurant in Virginia. It reminds me of places that refuse to serve people of color or lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people. While I resent that she constantly lies and deflects the truth, I’m more opposed to discrimination. I suppose I’ve grown accustomed to Fox News refusing to tell the truth, first attacking an African-American president without regard to their own relentless racism, and then campaigning against the possible first woman president because she was too competent and they needed a puppet whom they could persuade angry white people to elect.
So, was Sarah a victim of reverse discrimination? I was tempted to think so, until someone’s words came echoing through my soul. I remembered Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s speech to the nation delivered in Washington, D.C. He spoke of his longing for justice, equality, and freedom, and he articulated his dream of a better future. He expressed his longing for a day when people “will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.”
As that phrase echoed in my mind, I realized that Sarah, the daughter of a right-wing Southern Baptist minister and racist governor of Arkansas, was, in fact, being judged by the content of her character rather than the color of her skin.
She wasn’t turned away because she is a woman nor because she is white. She was not turned away because she is heterosexual, upper-class, or middle-aged. She was turned away because she is a liar who defends the destruction of the environment, the imprisonment of children, attacks on the free press, the appointment of bigots to the Supreme Court, and the dismantling of systems of justice and equality.
Sarah, you are not welcome at my house until you repent of the grave harm you are supporting with your lies. It isn’t your race, gender, or sexual orientation to which I object; it is the content of your character.
ALL of us should be judged that way.