All things considered, and with all the evidence stacked up in a nice neat pile, I think it’s fair to say that President Donald Trump is just a little bit racist.
Be it his comments about Mexican immigrants being rapists and “bad hombres” (yes he really did say that), or his support and advocacy of the Barrack Obama “birther” conspiracy (the claim that Obama was not born in the US), and even claims of racial discrimination in the Trump organisation in the 1970s and 80s, Trump’s shown his racist tendencies before, and no doubt they’ll surface again.
But this time, The Donald has gone a step further. In an all too common occurrence, the President of the United States attacked four congresswomen, who have been critical of his presidency in a tirade on Twitter. Although he didn’t name them, it was clear who he was targeting.
He told them to “go back” and “fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came”, despite all of them being US citizens and three of the four being born in the US, with the other arriving in the country as a refugee when she was a child.
He said that Representatives Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, Ayanna Pressley and Rashida Tlaib “originally came from countries whose governments are a complete and total catastrophe” which is true, they’re American! Not only are Trump’s comments disgusting and abhorrent, he’s also setting a dangerous precedent.
It says to his supporters that people of colour are not in the image of America, that they don’t belong and should return “home”. Ilhan Omar, who was one of the four, said following the president’s outburst that Trump’s “blatantly racist attack” on the women was “the agenda of white nationalists”, before adding that the president would like “nothing more than to divide our country”.
Throughout his presidency, the link to white nationalism has been hanging over him like an ironically dark cloud. Allegations of racism and xenophobia have never been far away, with Trump blurring the line between President and white supremacy advocate.
What it points to is Trump’s ambitions to get re-elected to the White House next year, with his tactics attempting to appeal to his ever vociferous fan-base, who continue to look more and more like far right nationalists.
Problematically, he’s never been made accountable for his racist and xenophobic vitriol by the party he’s representing. It’s also interesting to note that the four people he chose to attack were women.
There are plenty of critical, male Democrats Trump could target, but the president decided to target four women. Democratic Representative Don Beyer was quick to point out that although he was born in Italy, he has not been the victim of the president. But why, it can’t be because he is a white male?!? Surely not!
Following his outburst on Twitter on the 15th July, Trump has been widely condemned for his comments, yet Republicans are still finding it hard to criticise the President. They clearly have one eye on the upcoming elections and don’t want to sow any seeds of doubt about the capability of their president. And anyway, he is perfectly capable of doing that himself.
However, a smattering of Republicans openly condemned the remarks. For example, Representative Will Hurd of Texas told CNN Trump’s comments were “racist and xenophobic” whilst Representative Fred Upton of Michigan said he was “appalled by the President’s tweets”. Whereas Alaska Senator Lisa Murkowski utilised Trump’s favourite platform and tweeted: “There is no excuse for the president’s spiteful comments – they were absolutely unacceptable and this needs to stop.”
Most notably however, the head honchos of the Republican party have been silent. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has kept his lips firmly sealed whilst House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy said that “the President is not a racist”. Despite living in a fake news world, it’s hard to deny that Trump is a racist, the evidence is stacked up against him, as high as Trump Tower itself.
And even those who did seem to call Trump out on his racism, still couldn’t help themselves and criticised the Democratic congresswomen for their politics, with Senator Lindsay Graham denouncing them as a “bunch of communists”, echoing Trump’s comments that they were “Radical Left Congresswomen”.
Trump’s not averse to childish games. He’ll quite happily attack an opponent personally, especially if it’s over Twitter! The problem is, he’s the leader of one of the world’s strongest powers, and not a prepubescent child on the playground, although you’d be forgiven for often mistaking the two.
All in all, it points to a Republican strategy gearing towards the next election, where they’re attempting to label the Democratic Party as far-left and anti-American. With President Trump leading the charge, expect the language to become more aggressive, violent and racist as the election race builds up a head of steam.
Trump’s aim is much like that of the Roman’s, to divide and conquer. This has the potential to turn even uglier in the next few months, as tensions build and election campaigns get in full swing. Trump doesn’t hold back when he throws his punches, and any Democratic candidate will have to be ready to take one square in the face.
The Thing Is, Trump may argue that he isn’t racist or xenophobic, but his actions as president, and throughout his life, do little to dissuade from the evidence. Maybe if he wants people to think he isn’t racist he should preface his tweets with “I’m not racist but…”, or maybe, just maybe, not attack people based on their race or ethnicity. Just a thought.
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