He doesn’t know what a White supremacist is
Donald Trump, leading candidate for the Republican presidential nomination, is a lighting rod across the country. Trump plays both sides against the middle in his search for a wider net of voters, pretending ignorance of White supremacists, like Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke.
That he could lead shows how frustrated Republican voters are by their sense of being abandoned and lied to by the Republican Party establishment regarding such key concerns as the economy, jobs, immigration, and foreign adventurism. Trump is as supported by Whites that feel abandoned by the Republican Party establishment as Democrats who feel abandoned by the Democratic Party establishment.
Regardless of who wins the nominations, old guard party establishments are now on life support, near political death, and open to “revolution” from their members. Question: How come only Republicans have a Black candidate running for president?
Trump, with a straight face, is claiming he is neither a politician nor a historian and therefore doesn’t know about David Duke and the Ku Klux Klan, as if he also doesn’t know about slavery, segregation, racial prejudice and discrimination, not to mention any of the references of Chris Rock at the Academy Awards Sunday night, February 28. In politics and history Trump is a true gamer.
So how do we judge this man who claims not to know history or foreign policy yet seeks to have his finger on the red button and have the phone for 3 am phone calls next to his bed? Is this an example of the scary people running in both parties who want to be the next president of the United States who wields their red pens, red phones, and red buttons?
It is hard to tell. Woodrow Wilson, Democrat, president from 1913-1921, a leader of the progressive movement, used his pen and phone to segregate Washington, D.C. for the first time in its history. It was the last big city segregated in America. He asked Congress to declare war in order to make “the world safe for democracy.” He also advocated a world body for peace, the “League of Nations.” Wilson was another gamer with politics and history.
Times have changed. Both parties are imploding, with Republicans seemingly doing it faster. Both sides are trying to empower the bigs (big business, big unions, big government) but not us littles, “we the people” in our neighborhoods.
In fact, it appears the Republican Party is about to implode and dust off the ghost of the Whig party that dissolved in 1844, and was replaced by the Republicans, with Lincoln its first sitting president. The resulting Democratic Party included Whig break-always who supported slavery and Indian removal policies. Is Donald Trump about to be the cause of Republicans changing their identity once again?
What can we trust about a man claiming to know so little? How can the bliss of his ignorance be blissful to those of us whose heritage includes crossing in slave murder ships, the horrors of Deep South segregation, Jim Crow, and the denial of our identity?
What does Donald Trump gain pretending ignorance about one of the most dangerous and tragic movements in American history, when Blacks were served up to White supremacy, slavery and segregation?
Donald Trump and the republican White right wing have pushed President Obama off the front page, as they continue their petty, mean-spirited and hateful campaign of 2016. We repeat again that Donald Trump is indeed a politician and a historian who indeed knows about White supremacy. Too much is at stake in the world for this to continue by either party.