South Carolina senator and Black Republican Tim Scott gave the Republican response to President Joe Biden’s address to Congress Wednesday night, in which he announced America isn’t racist and seemed surprised when Black Americans checked him.
During his 15-minute speech, Scott said President Joe Biden seems like a good man but is dividing the country by pursuing major legislation. Scott also gave credit for the coronavirus recovery to former President Donald Trump.
However, what really stuck out from his speech was when he used his own personal story of being a son to a single mother and a grandson to an illiterate Black man who was forced to pick cotton to connect with minorities lamenting racism before condemning Democrats for their response to racism.
“America is not a racist country,” Scott said, after sharing that he has experienced racism himself including being called an Uncle Tom.
That statement rubbed Black Americans the wrong way and the term Uncle Tim immediately became a trending topic on Twitter. The term became so popular on the social media site, it blocked the phrase from its trending topics.
While Scott believes the country has turned the corner, many Black Americans feel differently. Many Black Americans felt the country may be on the right path after the Derek Chauvin verdict, but Slate reported that police across the country killed six people in the next 24 hours including Ma’Khia Bryant, a 16-year-old Black girl who was killed in Ohio.
In many ways, Scott is a success story in the South. He is the first Black U.S. Senator from South Carolina and the first U.S. Senator from a southern state since Reconstruction. Scott is also one of three Black members of the 263 Republicans sitting in office.
However, Scott has little support in the Black community due to his allegiance to Trump and his views on policing, racism, and his support of qualified immunity for cops.