Former President Bill Clinton gave a speech to a crowd of Hillary Clinton supporters and was repeatedly interrupted by Black Lives Matter protesters. Several protesters heckled the 42nd President mid-speech and held up signs, including one that read: “CLINTON Crime Bill Destroyed Our Communities.”
In the overwhelmingly African-American neighborhood of Philadelphia, the city that will host this summer’s Democratic National Convention, he responded to them, saying, “you are defending the people who killed the lives you say matter. Tell the truth.”
According to reports the Mr. Clinton spent more than 10 minutes confronting the protesters for his wife over criticisms that the crime bill he approved while president led to a surge in the imprisonment of black people.
One of the protesters held a sign that declared, “Black youth are not super predators.” That’s a reference to when Hillary Clinton spoke in 1996 of “the kinds of kids that are called ‘super-predators’” and said “we have to bring them to heel.”
To many in the conscious black political circles saw the possible future First Gentleman’s bold stance, reminiscent of his bold attack on Hip-Hop Artist and Activist Sister Souljah.
Speaking to Jesse Jackson Sr.’s Rainbow Coalition in June 1992, Clinton responded both to that quotation and to something Souljah had said in the music video of her song “The Final Solution: Slavery’s back in Effect” (“If there are any good white people, I haven’t met them”).”If you took the words ‘white’ and ‘black,’ and you reversed them, you might think David Duke was giving that speech,” said Clinton.
In June 1992, The New York Times wrote: “Sister Souljah was used as a vehicle, like Willie Horton and various other black victims of racism,” she said at a news conference at the Marriott East Side Hotel in Manhattan. She was referring to the furloughed rapist whose image in 1988 Republican campaign advertisements became a racially charged issue.
In United States politics this became known as “the Sister Souljah Moment.” A Sister Souljah moment is a politician’s public repudiation of an extremist person or group, statement, or position perceived to have some association with the politician or the politician’s party
It has been described as “a key moment when the candidate takes what at least appears to be a bold stand against certain extremes in their party” and as “a calculated denunciation of an extremist position or special interest group.” Such an act of repudiation is designed to signal to centrist voters that the politician is not beholden to traditional, and sometimes unpopular, interest groups associated with the party,  although such a repudiation runs the risk of alienating some of the politician’s allies and the party’s base voters.
But for the Clintons, video footage (above) of Hillary Clinton defending the reforms in 1994 has been widely circulated during the campaign by activists in the Black Lives Matter protest movement. In the footage, she calls young people in gangs “super-predators” who need to “be brought to heel.” Hillary Clinton face protesters in February upset by her remarks, she then said she regretted her language.
The fact of the matter is; the Black Lives Matter movement has a right to protest and hold the Clintons accountable for legislation they supported. If Black political leadership like the Congressional Black Caucus or Black Pastors who live in these effect communities won’t then our Black Youth will.
The War on Drugs has spawned a plethora of ‘get tough on crime legislation such as ‘three strikes and you’re out’, habitual offender provisions and Drug Court. The end effect of these sentencing policies has increased the proportion of convicted drug dealers sentenced to prison but has had a minimal effect on the cause; the influx of drugs in our communities and drug abuse.