Black CNN camerawoman Patricia Carroll, who was assaulted both verbally and physically by two people at the Republican National Convention, has spoken out about the event today.
“I can’t change these people’s hearts and minds," Patricia said. "No, it doesn’t feel good, but I know who I am. I’m a proud Black woman."
Patricia was covering the convention when two attendees began throwing peanuts at her and yelling, “This is how we feed animals.” The two hecklers were removed from the event by Tampa police. Many people, both Democrat and Republican, have publicly denounced their behavior.
The 34-year-old Alabama resident spoke to the Maynard Institute about the incident. Although it happened on Republican turf, Patricia asserted that racism isn’t a partisan problem.
“This situation could happen to me at the Democratic convention or standing on the street corner. Racism is a global issue,” said Patricia who emphasized the scarcity of Black people, particularly women, at these events.
“You come to places like this, you can count the Black people on your hand,” she said. “They see us doing things they don’t think I should do.”
Thinkprogress.org backs Patricia’s assessment that “you can count the Black people on your hand,” pointing out that only 2 percent of the delegates at the RNC are Black, compared to an expected 26 percent at the Democratic convention.
Patricia did not talk in great length about the incident itself, but did say that she was not surprised.
“A lot of Black people are upset. This should be a wake-up call to Black people. . . . People were living in euphoria for a while. People think we’re gone further than we have,” she said.
Racial tension in the world of politics seems to have taken significantly digressive steps in the last decade in the state of Florida. In an article published by Rolling Stone back in May, Ari Berman chronicled the many voting restrictions that have been passed, manipulated and perpetually revamped in an effort to depress Democratic turnout in November.
“Florida Republicans have taken voter suppression to a brazen extreme” proclaimed Ari, who also talked about the party’s latest move, which will wipe out once eligible ex-felons. “The latest purge comes on the heels of a trio of new voting restrictions passed by Florida Republicans last year, disenfranchising 100,000 previously eligible ex-felons who’d been granted the right to vote under GOP Governor Charlie Crist in 2008.”
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