Trump defends honoring racists in monument debate

From Confederate statues to airports named for a movie star who once said he believed in white supremacy, the President has decried steps that would strip racists of their monuments and memorials — siding instead with those who would keep the honors intact.

And he promoted a video of a White couple brandishing weapons as peaceful Black protesters marched past their ornate mansion, images that underscored an ongoing racial divide.

Aides and people around him have denounced everything from the removal of “Gone with the Wind” — one of Trump’s favorite movies — to the rebranding of Aunt Jemima pancake syrup, discounting stereotypes that have long been called racist.

Trump thanked 'great people' shown in Twitter video in which a man chants 'white power'
Combined with his efforts to protect federal monuments, Trump’s continued reliance on racist rhetoric and tropes has only exacerbated racial tensions that have been escalating after the police killing of George Floyd on May 25, an event that prompted protests and a new reckoning on racist symbols in America.

Beyond simply expressing his opposition to the changes, Trump has aggressively sought the prosecution of people who have defaced or destroyed statues in American cities. This week he has tweeted FBI wanted posters seeking information about people who defaced a statue of Andrew Jackson near the White House. He wrote Tuesday morning that he was “tracking down” vandals who threw red paint on “magnificent” statues of George Washington in Manhattan and encouraged them to surrender themselves to police.


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