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In his initial indictment back in March 2023 by a Manhattan district attorney, the world awaited with bated breath for this defining moment in American history. The sound of a camera’s click within the confines of the Fulton County Sheriff’s Office for inmate P01135809, Donald J. Trump, America’s 45th President. It’s the first photo of its kind; the Trump mugshot will be a lasting unfavorable image destined to endure perpetually.

It took a Black woman, District Attorney Fani Willis, hailing from the South, to bring the former US president’s ego to its knees.

Trump, an individual who holds considerable power, faced a profound humbling within the very state that dealt the decisive blow to his 2020 rebid campaign as Commander in Chief. He now faces criminal charges of racketeering and conspiracy in relation to his effort to overturn the 2020 election.

Trump Mugshot

The significance of a Trump Mugshot to Black America
Donald Trump surrendered to Fulton County, Ga., authorities on Thursday. He was indicted by a grand jury for his efforts to overturn the state’s 2020 election results. Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images.

In the context of Black History, it’s a significant moment — a changing of the guards.

For once, a man who is seated at the apex of white privilege is visibly being treated as an everyday U.S. citizen.

While he “could stand in the middle of 5th Avenue and shoot somebody” and not lose votes, what he cannot do is evade justice because no one is above the law.

Thus a jubilant moment for the Black North America story. For those who endured the horrors of institutional enslavement and lived through the era of Jim Crow, it’s a small signal of the arc of the universe bending toward justice.

This mugshot is sunshine for Emmitt Till, the Central Park Five, and the numerous cases of violence inflicted upon innocent Black individuals who faced unjust treatment from a system that denied them the solace of seeing their oppressors prosecuted. 

In each situation, these innocent victims shared a common desire – a simple yearning for justice when men with full immunity like Trump haunted them for simply being Black.

Today, an arrogant White man is being held accountable for his deplorable and illegal actions of trying to suppress the will of Black Georgians.

The Trump mugshot shows that the ex-president is now an alleged criminal who faces charges of racketeering and conspiracy in relation to his effort to hold on to power and overturn the 2020 election.                   

Nehemiah D. Frank is the founder and editor-in-chief of The Black Wall Street Times and a descendant of two families that survived the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre. Although his publication’s store and newsroom...

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