The flag in front of the Supreme Court building flies at half-staff for late Justice Antonin Scalia. Credit: AP/J. Scott Applewhite, File

As a habitual reader of four daily mainstream newspapers, I frequently come upon a headline so absurd, it makes me think . . .

This can’t be real. They must be making this up—just to mess with my mind.

So it was on Saturday morning when I came face-to-face with the following headline in an article in the print edition of the New York Times.

“After Grilling Judge, G.O.P. Sees Opening To Win Black Voters.”

The judge in question is Ketanji Brown Jackson, who the senate confirmed as a Supreme Court justice, and the first Black woman to sit on the highest court in the land.

Congratulations, Justice Jackson.

Having read that headline, I’m very curious as to which Black voters the Republicans think they can win over with their treatment of Justice Jackson. Other than people like Candace Owens, Herschel Walker, and Larry Elder, who are already on team MAGA.

By the way, “grilling” is a euphemism for what Jackson faced from her Republican assailants on the Senate Judiciary Committee and in the media.

They teased her, taunted her, mocked her, maligned her, and rolled their eyes at her.

They said she was unqualified to sit on the bench, even though she’d been a federal judge for eight years, clerked for a Supreme Court justice, and had graduated from the finest universities in the country. Then they really went into the dirt, all but calling her a pedophile because—oh, it’s not worthy to mention their so-called reason. It’s just a toxic byproduct of their warped and diseased little minds.

In short, they trashed Justice Jackson like they trash Vice President Kamala Harris, Congresswomen Maxine Waters, Frederica Wilson, Sheila Jackson Lee, and just about any powerful Black woman not wearing an I-love-Trump T-shirt.

Keep in mind, Justice Jackson was widely admired, and deservedly so, by a vast majority of Black people in America, who saw her as a role model for their children. Especially Black girls.

So, again, do the Republicans truly think they can win over Black voters by assailing her?

I can’t believe they do. It’s just more bullshit they’re spewing to get in the heads of Democrats and make them feel all is hopeless.

I’ve watched Republicans play this game for years. Every Republican president from Nixon to Reagan to Bush (both of them) was supposedly going to win over the Black vote.

For years, I’ve been hearing how high-profile Black Republicans—from Wilt Chamberlain to Ice Cube—were representative of anyone other than themselves.

And, yet, the vast majority of Black voters remained Democrats, for better or worse.

Look, I realize that not all Black voters are liberals, much less lefties.

Many are conservatives. And there’s a long line of Black Republicans going back to the days of Abraham Lincoln.

But obviously this current Republican Party bears no relation to Lincoln’s. And so, the overwhelming majority of Black voters will vote Democrat because really, they have no choice.

Other than not voting at all. Or voting for a third-party candidate who hasn’t a prayer of winning.

And as an old leftie, I can relate.

I often get upset at Democratic leaders. I’ve been known to rant and rail against party chieftains who push the party right in order to pick up the proverbial swing voters in suburban Virginia.

It irritates the hell out of me that Dems take my vote for granted. That centrists such as Mayor Rahm or Bill Clinton look at lefties like me and say: you’ve got nowhere to go, so shut up and fall in line.

I’m always looking for an overture, no matter how small, from the Republicans. Something that suggests I might have an excuse to vote for them—if only to send a message to the Bill Clintons of the world: stop taking me for granted.

And, yes, once in a long while, the Republicans sorta throw me a bone. For instance, in 2016, when Russian operatives, apparently looking out for Trump, hacked into Democratic Party computers and unveiled emails that party leaders favored Hillary Clinton over my beloved Bernie Sanders.

I was one of those outraged lefties whose resentment was fueled by Trump’s tweets about Hillary betraying Bernie. Like he cared about Bernie or lefties like me.

Those trash-talking tweets were the limit of Trump’s outreach to me. Once in office, Trump doubled down on all the inequities by getting congressional Republicans to pass a huge tax break for the richest of the rich.

And ever since, he and MAGA have lumped people like me into a subspecies they call the “radical left.”

We are, they say, an even greater threat to democracy than the “patriots” who overtook Congress in an attempt to overthrow that very same democracy.

That’s right. According to MAGA, people like me are more dangerous than the insurrectionists who overran Congress looking to hang Mike Pence and Nancy Pelosi. You know, because we want health care for all.

And I’m supposed to vote MAGA because Trump trashes the Clintons? I don’t think so. I haven’t lost my mind that much.

My guess is that it’s similar with the vast majority of Black voters. The Trump Republicans have welcomed white supremacists to the fold, opposed voting-rights laws, and attempted to reelect Trump by getting judges or election officials to throw out hundreds of thousands of votes from Detroit, Milwaukee, Philadelphia, Atlanta, and other cities with large Black populations.

And now Black people are supposed to be attracted to them because they trashed Justice Jackson, a great hero to so many?

That’s delusional.

At best, the Republicans may convince Black voters that all is hopeless and they might as well not vote at all—which is probably the strategy.

If Black voters, or lefties, don’t vote—it’s a win for MAGA.

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