Election 2020

Terry Crews: White People Can Be Republican, But 'If You're Black, You Have to Be One Thing'

FILE - In this April 10, 2018 file photo, actor Terry Crews appears on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange in New York. Crews and agent Adam Venit have agreed to settle a lawsuit in which Crews alleged Venit groped him at a Hollywood party. Venit’s agency William Morris Endeavor, also named as a defendant, confirmed the deal Thursday in a statement saying the lawsuit would be dismissed. (AP Photo/Richard Drew, File)

On Tuesday, Brooklyn Nine-Nine star Terry Crews slammed presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden, warned about “black supremacy,” and insisted that black people should not be pigeon-holed into one political party. The black actor shot back at Biden’s notorious statement to Charlamagne tha God, “If you have a problem figuring out whether you’re voting for me or Trump, then you ain’t black.”

“The problem with that is, black people have different views,” Crews said on the CBS show The Talk. “When you’re white, you can be Republican, Libertarian, Democrat. You can be anything. But if you’re black, you have to be one thing. Even Joe Biden said, ‘Hey man, if you don’t vote for me, you ain’t black.'”

The actor warned against “gatekeepers” of blackness.

“Blackness is always judged,” he explained. “It’s always put up against this thing, and I’m going, ‘Wait a minute: That right there is a supremacist move. You have now put yourself above other black people.'”

“We have people who have decided who is going to be black and who’s not,” Crews explained. “And I simply — because I have a mixed-race wife [Rebecca King-Crews] — have been discounted from the conversation a lot of the time, by very, very militant movements, the Black power movement. I’ve been called all kinds of things — like an Uncle Tom — simply because I’m successful, simply because I’ve worked my way out of Flint, Michigan.”

Crews became notorious for tweeting, “Defeating White supremacy without White people creates Black supremacy. Equality is the truth. Like it or not, we are all in this together.”

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Crews stood by that statement in the interview.

“I can’t really regret it, because I really want the dialogue to come out,” the actor explained. “Maybe there’s another term that might be better — either ‘separatist’ or ‘elitist’ or something like that.”

“But the thing is, I’ve experienced supremacy even growing up. I’ve had black people tell me that the white man is the devil. I’ve experienced whole organizations that … because of the suffering of black people, they have decided that now, we are not equal, we’re better. And I think that’s a mistake,” Crews argued.

The actor insisted that supremacy — in all its forms — is a “spiritual problem.”

“In your head, you can look at yourself and you can develop a dangerous self-righteousness that could really hurt what we’re trying to do right now,” Crews argued. “We have to include this white voice, this Hispanic voice, this Asian voice. We have to include it right now, because if we don’t, it’s going to slip into something we are really not prepared for.”

Crews was right to stick to his guns. While the Cancel Culture has come for him, merely apologizing and backing down would make him look weak. By standing up for his position, he has explained that black supremacy is a serious issue — even though many people believe it is impossible for black people to be racist.

Many black and white liberals condemn black Republicans like Ben Carson and Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.) as somehow less black. Even Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) called Scott’s police reform plan “token” legislation. Like Joe Biden, Dick Durbin is white.

Black Americans should be able to think for themselves without being condemned for insufficient blackness.

Tyler O’Neil is the author of Making Hate Pay: The Corruption of the Southern Poverty Law Center. Follow him on Twitter at @Tyler2ONeil.

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