I wanted to follow-up my article on Charlottesville with the news President Donald Trump denounced the KKK, Neo-Nazis, and White Supremacy today. I was critical that he did not do that initially on Saturday after the violence in Charlottesville, VA, so it is only right to point out that he took the right action today.
Some may wonder why I think it was important for President Trump to do this instead of just generically condemning all violence.
First, I agree that all violence should be condemned, so I’m not disputing that. I called out Antifa myself in my earlier op/ed.
Second, while I do not believe President Trump is a white supremacist or even supportive of what they believe just about all who are in the alt-right or are white supremacists have been on the Trump train. That’s just a plain fact. While I don’t think “America First” is inherently racist (I think quite a bit of it is common sense), hyper-nationalism does breed racism. His policies are attractive to the alt-right. He needs to recognize that. His explicit condemnation and any action he takes as the chief executive carries far, far more weight than the left condemning them. While they may like Trump and the America First movement, it behooves Trump and those who support “America First” that they do not embrace them.
Conversely, the left must denounce Antifa and those who embrace racism and rioting in the Black Lives Matter movement. President Trump and the right can call them out all they want, but it really won’t carry much weight until their own “side” polices them. President Barack Obama was a miserable failure on that front, and the media was complicit in not covering that to their shame.
So, President Trump has now done what President Obama failed to do during his time in office. Granted he would have saved himself some grief had he done this on Saturday, but I commend him for doing it now. His statement today is better late than never.
Watch his remarks below:
The transcript of his remarks are below:
Thank you. I’m in Washington today to meet with my economic team about trade policy and major tax cuts and reform. We are renegotiating trade deals and making them good for the American worker. And it’s about time.
Our economy is now strong. The stock market continues to hit record highs, unemployment is at a 16-year low, and businesses are more optimistic than ever before. Companies are moving back to the United States and bringing many thousands of jobs with them. We have already created over one million jobs since I took office.
We will be discussing economic issues in greater detail later this afternoon, but, based on the events that took place over the weekend in Charlottesville, Virginia, I would like to provide the nation with an update on the ongoing federal response to the horrific attack and violence that was witnessed by everyone.
I just met with FBI Director Christopher Wray and Attorney General Jeff Sessions. The Department of Justice has opened a civil rights investigation into the deadly car attack that killed one innocent American and wounded 20 others. To anyone who acted criminally in this weekend’s racist violence, you will be held fully accountable. Justice will be delivered.
As I said on Saturday, we condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry, and violence. It has no place in America.
And as I have said many times before: No matter the color of our skin, we all live under the same laws, we all salute the same great flag, and we are all made by the same almighty God. We must love each other, show affection for each other, and unite together in condemnation of hatred, bigotry, and violence. We must rediscover the bonds of love and loyalty that bring us together as Americans.
Racism is evil. And those who cause violence in its name are criminals and thugs, including the KKK, neo-Nazis, white supremacists, and other hate groups that are repugnant to everything we hold dear as Americans.
We are a nation founded on the truth that all of us are created equal. We are equal in the eyes of our Creator. We are equal under the law. And we are equal under our Constitution. Those who spread violence in the name of bigotry strike at the very core of America.
Two days ago, a young American woman, Heather Heyer, was tragically killed. Her death fills us with grief, and we send her family our thoughts, our prayers, and our love.
We also mourn the two Virginia state troopers who died in service to their community, their commonwealth, and their country. Troopers Jay Cullen and Burke Bates exemplify the very best of America, and our hearts go out to their families, their friends, and every member of American law enforcement.
These three fallen Americans embody the goodness and decency of our nation. In times such as these, America has always shown its true character: responding to hate with love, division with unity, and violence with an unwavering resolve for justice.
As a candidate, I promised to restore law and order to our country, and our federal law enforcement agencies are following through on that pledge. We will spare no resource in fighting so that every American child can grow up free from violence and fear. We will defend and protect the sacred rights of all Americans, and we will work together so that every citizen in this blessed land is free to follow their dreams in their hearts, and to express the love and joy in their souls.
Thank you. God bless you. And God bless America. Thank you very much.