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Friday, February 17, 2017

Classic Racism at Trump Presser

Putting the task of correcting the problem on the back of the minority raising the problem is a classic racist tactic and chauvinist deflection with a long history. That is exactly what President Donald Trump did at his press conference when he responded to a question from April Ryan, an African American White House correspondent, about when we might meet with the Congressional Black Caucus. He suggested that if she wanted such a meeting she should take the responsibility for setting it up. He also cut her off before she could finish her sentence, another classic racist move. You can read Jordan Sargent's ,"The Video of Donald Trump Badgering a Black Reporter Needs to Be Watched", Spin.com, 16 Feb 2017, for the ugly details, or watch the video below.
Any minority activist that has worked in white dominated Left and liberal groups is very familiar with this tactic. I have personally seen this "peculiar" response to criticism played out countless times in my half century as an African American activist working in all manner of white-dominated Left groups from Students for a Democratic Society to the CPML and Veterans for Peace. Often when members of color raised the need for the group to address its "whiteness," they were abruptly cutoff, and then told it was their responsibility to fix the problem. Like I said, this was a classic move. Donald Trump could have learned it in any number of "Left" organizations let alone the GOP .

There was another example of classic racism by Donald Trump when a reporter asked him about anti-Semitism among some of his supporters:
Here is the transcript you can't get from the New York Times "Full Transcript and Video: Trump News Conference":
TRUMP: Are you a friendly reporter? Watch how friendly he is. Wait. Wait. Watch how friendly he is. Go ahead.

TURX: I've been good to you the entire campaign, Mr. President.

TRUMP: Go ahead.

TURX: So first of all, my name is Jake Turx from Ami Magazine and despite what some of my colleagues may have been reporting, I haven’t seen anybody in my community accuse either yourself or anyone on your staff of being anti-Semitic. We understand that you have Jewish grandchildren, You are their Zaidy.

TRUMP: Thank You

TURX: However, what we are concerned about, and what we haven't really heard being addressed, is an uptick in anti-Semitism and how the government is planning to take care of it. There's been a report out that 48 bomb threats have been made against Jewish centers all across the country in the last couple of weeks. There are people who are committing anti-Semitic acts, or threatening to...

[Note: Notice not only that Trump cuts him off but when he cut him off. The anti-terrorism president is being told about bomb threats but clearly he's not listening. He only hears a charge of anti-Semitism - CLASSIC!]

TRUMP: You see, he said he was gonna ask a very simple, easy question. And it’s not, its not, not — not a simple question, not a fair question. OK sit down, I understand the rest of your question.

So here’s the story, folks. Number one, I am the least anti- Semitic person that you’ve ever seen in your entire life. Number two, racism, the least racist person. In fact, we did very well relative to other people running as a Republican — quiet, quiet, quiet.

See, he lied about — he was gonna get up and ask a very straight, simple question, so you know, welcome to the world of the media. But let me just tell you something, that I hate the charge, I find it repulsive.

I hate even the question because people that know me and you heard the prime minister, you heard Ben Netanyahu (ph) yesterday, did you hear him, Bibi? He said, I’ve known Donald Trump for a long time and then he said, forget it.

So you should take that instead of having to get up and ask a very insulting question like that.
It like Trump isn't even listening to what Turx is saying. As soon a Turx suggests there is an issue of racism that Trump maybe could be doing more about, he jumps to the defensive with "I am the least anti- Semitic person that you’ve ever seen in your entire life. Number two, racism, the least racist person."

It reminded me of the response of some Los Angeles Veterans for Peace members to suggestions that their Arlington West Memorial project do more to reflect the "Cost of War" to the Iraqi people. They interrupted and shouted out "We're not racists!" as though somebody had said they were, but more importantly, as though that was suppose to put the whole matter to rest.



I took the time to transcribe Jake Turx part before going to work today because the New York Times couldn't seem to get it right, even his name. Instead the "paper of record" presented us with this:
QUESTION: So first of all, my name is (Inaudible) from (Inaudible) Magazine. I (inaudible). I haven’t seen anybody in my community, including yourself or any of the — anyone on your staff of being (OFF-MIKE).

Because (OFF-MIKE). However, what we’ve already heard about and what we (OFF-MIKE) is (OFF-MIKE) so you’re general forecast (ph) like 48 (OFF-MIKE). There are people who are everything (ph) happens through their packs (ph) is one of the (OFF-MIKE)...
I don't know what their problem was. While the captions on the above video made transcribing it easy, I really have no trouble understanding what Turx is saying. It would seem that the NYT and Trump have similar problems in that regard.

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