In a stunning display of racism that is considered acceptable behavior in post-Obama America, CEOs from seven of the biggest banks in the country were singled out by a Demcoratic lawmaker because of the color of their skin.
Rep. Al Green, D-Texas, a member of the House Financial Services Committee, which is chaired by Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., asked the CEOs to confirm their race as he questioning them last Wednesday.
“As I look at the panel, and I’m grateful for your attendance, the eye would perceive that the seven of you have something in common,” Green said, in a sleepy tone. “You appear to be white men.”
“I may be mistaken,” he continued. “If one among you happens to be something other than a white male, would you kindly extend a hand into the air?”
None of the seven raised their hand — oh, to have a penny for their thoughts as they looked on while the black lawmaker singled them out for the color of their skin.
“Kindly let the record reflect that there are no hands in the air and that the panel is made up of white men,” Green then said.
“This is not a pejorative,” he added. “You’ve all sermonized to a certain extent about diversity. If you believe your likely successor will be a woman or a person of color, would you kindly extend a hand into the air?”
Again, no one raised a hand and Green continued with a highly awkward approach that would have embarrassed a better man.
“For fear that you may not hear me, just raise your hand now so that I’ll know you’re there. Raise your hand, please,” he continued, badgering those reluctant to play into his political charade.
“All of you,” Green said. “Sir, apparently you don’t hear me over on the end. Would you kindly extend a hand into the air if you can hear me?”
“All white men, and none of you, not one, appears to believe that your successor will be a female or a person of color,” he then observed.
Green continued with his “raise your hand” theme as he questioned the CEOs about the practices of banks from the 19th century in regard to slavery.
“My ancestors were slaves,” he offered, saying the issue is “near and dear to my heart.”
After mentioning that JP Morgan released information in 2005 that indicating it directly benefited from slavery, Green asked James Dimon, the chairman and CEO of JP Morgan, Chase & Co. to respond.
“I do believe that in 2005 we made a report about potential transactions that involve slavery between J.P. Morgan or its heritage companies back in the 1800s,” he said.
Dimon did not remind Green, who was dismayed the other banks had not done their own study, that this occurred nearly two centuries ago.
The juvenile approach continued Green asked the heads of major banks to raise their hands if they “believe that your bank benefited from slavery in some way,” and to raise their hands if they did not believe that they benefited.
No one played along other than Dimon, who had already acknowledged the report his company produced in 2005.
When Green’s time mercifully expired, he told the bankers: “I do want you to know that we believe you can do better.”
So can you , congressman. So can you.
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