Facebook has become pretty political in the last few years, and with the presidency of Donald Trump now steering into its third year, the divisions are still deep and painful between those of us who lean right and those of us who lean left. Daily we are all bombarded with accusations of false news stories, cries of “collusion” countering cries of “exoneration”, and both sides scrambling to prove their own side’s opinions while dodging the “facts” being thrown their way that might prove otherwise. Frankly, it’s a mess out there and we can’t help but get pulled into it from time to time.
Just for clarification, I was a Republican until Trump came along. Now I consider myself a left-leaning Independent. To me, Trump’s presidency has done one thing that I find dubiously positive – it’s shown the severe lack of morals, pathetic lack of ethics, and ridiculous lack of a spine in our Republican representation in the government. It has helped shine a spotlight on how power has truly corrupted our representatives, who will do and say anything to keep their places among the rich and powerful. They’ve shown themselves to be elitist, thinking themselves beyond the law, beyond the truth, and infinitely more important than the people they were elected to represent. While that is a miserable thing to find out about the people who are supposed to be serving our interests, I’m of the opinion that I’m glad I found out. I will work tirelessly to oust them all.
I have a lot of friends that are still staunchly Republican though, and in a few instances, that has caused some friction. I try not to engage much with the political posts that hawk different views from mine, but once in awhile, I disagree so much, I just need to say something. Last night was one of those times.
My friend and fellow writer, who is a Conservative, posted this on Facebook:
Before I continue, I would like to lay down a few rules. Number one, I don’t find that because someone else thinks a different way, that automatically makes them an enemy and/or unintelligent, so please don’t comment calling anyone names. I’m always happy to open up a dialogue, but if it digresses to people just being rude, that’s not useful. I’m confident in why I believe what I believe, and I imagine people who disagree with me might feel the same way. So, learning to disagree without being offended is necessary.
I voiced my concern that this statement wasn’t true, and that there were many instances that convinced me Trump was indeed a racist. In true form, my friend asked me to back up my beliefs, and I promised her I would. So here we go… 🙂
People today tend to get the term “racist” wrong. They assume that in order to be a racist person, you need to wish ill-will on another race of people. Actually, that isn’t really true. It is just when you treat someone differently (good or bad) because they are from a different race than you are. There are actually a lot of people who consider themselves to be good people who by their own actions and words, are racist.
For me, Trump is a very clear example of a racist person. He has actually been this way for a really long time. Here are some examples of Trump’s racism I find compelling:
- In the 1970’s, Trump was charged for violating the Fair Housing Act by not renting to African Americans. NPR – Donald Trump’s Housing Discrimination
- Trump took out an ad in New York newspapers urging the death penalty be applied to the 5 black and Latino boys accused of raping a white woman; refused to reverse his position as late as October 2016, 10 years after DNA evidence had exonerated them from the crime. Trump’s Death Penalty Ad
- On June 16, 2015, Trump began his presidential campaign with a speech disparaging Mexican immigrants as all criminals and rapists. Racism tends to paint an entire group of people with one broad stroke, and for Trump, Mexicans are ALL criminals and rapists. Donald Trump: All the Times He’s Insulted Mexico
- In December 2015, Trump called for a “total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States”, including refusing to readmit Muslim-Americans who were outside of the country at the time. Broad strokes, people. Federal Judge Rules That Trump’s Immigration Policy Was Racist
- Trump said a federal judge hearing a case about Trump University was biased because of his Mexican heritage. The Judge Trump Disparaged
- In June 2017, Trump said 15,000 recent immigrants from Haiti “all have AIDS” and that the 40,000 Nigerians, once seeing the United States, would never “go back to their huts” in Africa. Trump Derides Protections For Immigrants From “Shithole” Countries
- On January 11, 2019, Trump called for less immigration from Haiti and Africa, and more from Norway. In Norway, Trump’s Comments on Immigration Rejected As Backhanded Compliment
- Trump once referred to a Hispanic Miss Universe as “Miss Housekeeping”. Donald Trump Called Me “Miss Housekeeping”
- At a June 2016 campaign rally, Trump pointed to one attendee and said, “Oh, look at my African American over here. Look at him.” Donald Trump’s Racism
When I was compiling this list, I didn’t include everything I was able to find. Everything listed has more than one source and doesn’t come from news sources known strictly for enabling only one side of an argument.
To me, it is clear that Donald Trump is, in fact, a racist human being. Whether he understands or acknowledges that fact about himself is irrelevant, though I am inclined to believe that he does think that he is in a superior race, and thus believes his value is somehow greater than people who belong to races of color.
In my opinion, trying to use the bad acts of Jussie Smollet, an African American and a man who identifies as a gay man, and the fact that he didn’t have to reap the consequences of his crimes as some kind of proof that Trump isn’t a racist, just doesn’t add up. Jussie is rich and famous; he belongs to the elite class that tends to buy their way out of their own consequences, and Trump himself is in that same class. It’s pretty far-fetched, at best.
I think at our core, we’re all a little racist. We tend to be more fearful of people who don’t look like we do, and all the stereotypes that follow people around don’t help. The truth is, if I was a black person, I’d be terrified of white cops. If I was a Mexican person, I’d be afraid of being accused of anything by a white person. And as we hear constantly, we white people are always being told that caravans of Latino gang members are heading our way to break into our country, rape and kill us all.
By using kernels of fear that linger deep inside of all of us, the rhetoric has forced most of us to take a long, hard look at who we are deep inside, and face the age old question, “Am I a racist?”.
Some people have embraced their fear and their hate, like Facebook Videos are constantly proving, while others, like myself, have sought to put that nugget of fear to rest by using logic and spirituality. Skin color is biology and has not one thing to do with anything but that.
You simply can’t paint entire groups of people as good or bad depending on how they look. And if you find yourself doing that, you should really examine why you feel that way, and work on becoming better.
We ALL have it in ourselves to do better than this.