Van Jones: ‘This Was a Whitelash Against a Changing Country’

"We've talked about everything but race tonight."

We can think of nothing more apt to explain how this moment in time feels to so many as this from Van Jones during CNN’s election night broadcast. You can read the transcript in full below, or watch the video at the end.

It’s hard to be a parent tonight for a lot of us. You tell your kids, “don’t be a bully.” You tell your kids, “don’t be a bigot.” You tell your kids, “do your homework, and be prepared.” And then you have this outcome, you have people putting children to bed tonight, and they’re afraid of breakfast.

I have Muslim friends who are texting me tonight saying, “should I leave the country?” I have a family of immigrants that are terrified tonight. This was many things. This was a rebellion against the elites. True. It was a complete reinvention of politics and polls it’s true. But it was also something else.

We’ve talked about everything but race tonight. We’ve talked about income, we’ve talked about class, we’ve talked about region, we haven’t talked about race. This was a whitelash. This was a whitelash against a changing country, it was a whitelash against a black president, in part. And that’s the part where the pain comes.

And Donald Trump has a responsibility tonight to come out and reassure people that he is going to be the president of all the people who he insulted, and offended, and brushed aside. Yeah, when you say you want to take your country back, you’ve got a lot of people who feel we’re not represented well either. But we don’t want to feel that someone’s been elected by throwing away some of us to appeal more deeply to others. So this is a deeply painful moment tonight; I know it’s not just about race. There’s more going on than that, but race is here too, we got to talk about this.