Surely, most El Paso residents welcomed the remarks of Presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren Wednesday, when joined the ranks of believers that Donald Trump is a white supremacist.
Asked by the New York Times if she thought Trump was a white supremacist, she responded, without hesitation: “Yes.”
He has given aid and comfort to white supremacists. He’s done the wink and a nod. He has talked about white supremacists as fine people. He’s done everything he can to stir up racial conflict and hatred in this country.
Notes Thomas Kaplan of the Times in his report about Warren’s remarks:
Ms. Warren’s comments amounted to one of the starkest condemnations to date from a leading Democratic presidential candidate about Mr. Trump’s language toward minorities and immigrants. She spoke hours after former Representative Beto O’Rourke of Texas gave the same assessment of Mr. Trump. Asked by MSNBC if Mr. Trump was a white supremacist, Mr. O’Rourke replied, “He is.”
After pushing the “birther” lie about President Barack Obama, Mr. Trump began his campaign for the presidency by disparaging Mexican immigrants as rapists and criminals. As president, he sought to bar people from predominantly Muslim countries from entering the United States; said there were “very fine people on both sides” of a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Va.; and used an obscenity to describe African nations.
He has warned of an “invasion” of migrants at the southern border. And last month, he said that four congresswomen of color should “go back” to the countries they came from; all four are American citizens and only one of the women was born outside the United States.
He’s dehumanized or sought to dehumanize those who do not look like or pray like the majority here in this country.
Former Vice President, and candidate for president, Joe Biden says Trump has “fanned the flames of white supremacy in this nation.”
Trump readily, eagerly attacks Islamic terrorism but can barely bring himself to use the words ‘white supremacy. And even when he says it, he doesn’t appear to believe it. He seems more concerned about losing their votes than beating back this hateful ideology.
His low-energy, vacant-eyed mouthing of the words written for him condemning white supremacists this week I don’t believe fooled anyone, at home or abroad.
Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey, another presidential candidate, reminds us that Trump “spoke the same words the El Paso murdered did, warning of an ‘invasion”” by Hispanics.
O’Rourke, in El Paso, Wednesday, said Trump must bear responsibility the mass shooting:
To have been so regularly attacked and vilified and demonized by this president, for him to have created the conditions that made an attack like this possible and ultimately likely — it’s very insulting for us that he was here.
Biden sums it up when he says Trump has “more in common with George Wallace than he does with George Washington.”
“Donald Trump has a central message,” Warren says. “He says to the American people, if there’s anything wrong in your life, blame them — and ‘them’ means people who aren’t the same color as you, weren’t born where you were born, don’t worship the same way you do.”
Richard Parker, a Texan and author of “Lone Star Nation: How Texas Will Transform America,” wrote Thursday in the New York Times that Trump’s “day of racist comments left him looking small and isolated while the city (of El Paso) united against him.”
Trump, he said, “not only littered (his visit) with petty insults — but just to rub salt in the wound, doses of renewed racism. Yet most striking was how along and outnumbered the president was: rejected, ostracized and told to go home.”
With no public appearances, the president seemed to shrink, ever more alone as he clung to his white nationalist politics and governance. But he and his supporters were grossly outnumbered. For perhaps the first time in his angry, racist and cruel presidency, the tables were turned in smoldering, righteous popular anger — and he was on the receiving end.
While it was bad manners for a nation in mourning, it was more than that: It was a fresh dose of racism. In an era in which minorities are becoming majorities, as in Texas, and intermarrying with Anglos, who is Mr. Trump to judge people’s race and ethnicity based on their names? My last name is Anglo, but I am the son of a Mexican immigrant.
Along the president’s route from the airport to a hospital, people lined the roads to greet him — largely with rejection. “What’s more important?” Asked one man’s sign. “Lives or re-election?” American and Mexican flags sprouted together in the August heat. Signs with quotes bearing his name came back to haunt him: “We cannot allow these people to invade our country.” “Not Welcome” covered a stage at a park where people protested the president. The El Paso Times ran a black front page with this headline: “Mr. President, We Are Hurting.”
Another president might have been sensitive enough to sense the shift, and changed course accordingly — played the convener, the unifier. Instead, Mr. Trump displayed just how small he is, no matter how big his mouth or powerful his office. He never once appeared in public. By 6:01 p.m., after just a little more than two hours, he was safely aboard Air Force One again and it was wheels up into the sky. But he is a shrinking president, stuck in a racist past, flying over a changing America. And I think we — or most of us — are all El Paso now.
Let’s hope America is listening.
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