*Bernie Sanders is literally feeling the Bern from comments he made during Sunday night’s Democratic debate regarding black people and “ghetto.”
The remarks in question came from Sanders answer to the following question:
“What racial blind spots do you have?”
In his response, the Vermont senator made statements about white people not knowing “what it’s like to be living in a ghetto” or “what it’s like to be poor.”
Despite his intent with addressing the question, social media was not kind to Sanders as folks reacted with a flood of comments slamming the presidential hopeful for assuming that all black people reside in ghettos and there are no poor non-black people who also reside in less than ideal areas.
“Can someone tell @BernieSanders to be Black in America isn’t limited to living in a ghetto or being poor?” “News One Now” host Roland Martin tweeted, adding, “Racism hits middle class Blacks 2.”
“How far are they from @Eminem’s old hood #8Mile?” a debate viewer tweeted. “Maybe HE can tell @BernieSanders about being white & poor in the ghetto!”
“Bernie Sanders has to stop saying ‘ghetto’ to refer to poor communities of color. It’s racist, actually,” another Twitter user added.
BET points out just how off Sanders was while noting that poor ghettoes aren’t the only place occupied by black people. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 38.4% of all black households in 2009 were middle class while 28.8% accounted for working class blacks living in poverty.
The site goes on to cite thriving middle class black communities like Atlanta’s South Dekalb, Prince George’s County in Maryland and Baldwin Hills in Los Angeles as evidence of how black American communities are no longer exclusive to lower income blacks in light of them becoming well established since the 1990s
Although Sanders stumbled with his generalization of black people and the communities they reside in, he did save face with bringing the conversation back to the goal of ending institutionalized racism and fixing a “broken criminal justice system.”
“I believe as a nation in the year 2016 we must be firm in making it clear we will end institutionalized racism and reform a broken criminal justice system,” he said.
Expanding its analysis, BET acknowledged that the focus of the Black Lives Matter movement isn’t strictly on poor ghettoes, but bringing “all classes of the Black community together to confront and denounce discrimination and brutality against black children.”
To see the Twitter responses to Sander’s comments, scroll below:
Can someone tell @BernieSanders to be Black in America isn’t limited to living in a ghetto or being poor? Racism hits middle class Blacks 2
— rolandsmartin (@rolandsmartin) March 7, 2016
Bernie Sanders has to stop saying “ghetto” to refer to poor communities of color. It’s racist, actually,
— remy danton (@jaredloggins) March 7, 2016