Hillary Clinton had a tense run-in with members of Massachusetts chapters of the Black Lives Matter movement earlier this month, a newly released video reveals.
The three activists, who were initially denied entrance to the August 11 campaign event in New Hampshire, discussed race issues at length and at one point accused Clinton of ‘victim blaming’ and claimed that there has always been a ‘white problem of violence’.
Toward the end of the exchange, which focuses on Clinton changing her position on mass incarceration, the atmosphere becomes heated as the presidential candidate rejects her interviewer’s charged accusations.
After insisting that she is committed to do whatever she can on race issues, Clinton challenges the activists to propose specific ideas for policy change.
But activist Julius Jones disagrees with that approach and says: ‘If you don’t tell black people what we need to do, then we won’t tell you all what to do. What I mean to say is, this is and has always been a white problem of violence. there’s not much that we can do to stop the violence against us.’
Clinton knocks him back, saying that if policies don’t change, nothing will – and cut short a response in which Jones accuses her of victim blaming.
The tense discussion began when Clinton was questioned on her current stance of ending mass incarceration. In the 1990s, she called for stronger sentences and more prisons.
As the discussion continued, the videos show that Clinton told the activists that the only way to effect change is through policy.
‘You change laws, you change allocations of resources, you change the way systems operate. You’re not gonna change every heart,’ she says.
Following the video, Black Lives Matter activists Jones and Daunasia Yancey met with Melissa Harris-Perry of MSNBC and said that Clinton’s responses were not sufficient.
Yancey said they were looking for a ‘personal reflection on her responsibility for being part of the cause of this problem that we have today in mass incarceration’, which Clinton didn’t appear to show.
During the meeting, Jones asks Clinton how she is going to change the direction of the country and compared the US prison system to the plantation system.
When discussing mass incarceration, Jones says: ‘America’s first drug is free black labor. And turning black bodies into profit. ‘The mass incarceration system mirrors an awful lot like the prison.
‘The prison plantation system. It’s a similar thread. And until someone takes that message and speaks that truth to white people in this country, so that we can actually take on anti-blackness as a founding problem in this problem.’
Clinton nods in agreement before Jones claims that the mass incarceration of people is motivated by money.
Read more: dailymail.co.uk