Thursday 16 February 2023

Georgia Lawmaker Calls Clarence Thomas ‘Uncle Tom’ — After Admitting He Doesn’t Know Who Uncle Tom Is

 Georgia State Sen. Emanuel Jones (D-Decatur) admitted that he wasn’t sure whether “Uncle Tom” was a real person or a fictional character when he used the label to attack sitting Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas on Tuesday.

Jones took to the State Senate floor to argue against a Republican-led proposal to place a statue of Thomas – a Georgia native — on the grounds of the state Capitol, and he compared Thomas to a slave who had “sold his soul” to his white master.


“We cannot avoid that conversation so I’m not going to avoid it either,” Jones said of the discussion surrounding the statue.

“In the black community we have an expression — and I don’t want to use this label too deeply here because I’m just trying to tell you what we have in the African American community when we talk about a person of color that goes back historically to the days of slavery and that person betraying his own community — we have a term in the black community,” Jones began.

“That term that we use is called ‘Uncle Tom,'” he continued, adding, “And ‘Uncle Tom’ is a — either fictional or a non-fictional character, I don’t really know the origin of ‘Uncle Tom’ — but it talks about a person who, back during the days of slavery, sold his soul to the slave masters,” Jones continued.

The only explanation Jones gave — after first suggesting that white people would not necessarily understand his concerns — for accusing Thomas of such betrayal was a vague reference to his position on certain LGBTQ+ issues and the assertion that his decisions had outraged women.

“I don’t expect people of non-color to get the sensitivity that we feel about a person of color whose policies and practices and decisions and votes … we’ve rallied [to] fight against,” he said, adding, “Justice Thomas’ decisions have certainly sparked outrage [among] women and not just women of color, but all women. And certainly, when we look at the LGBTQ+ community, his votes and positions he’s taken have raised outrage in that community as well.”

The measure passed along party lines — 32-20 — and will be sent to the Georgia State House for consideration.

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