Washington Examiner, August 14, 2017
The heated debate over the weekend about whether President Trump was enabling white supremacist groups revealed the mainstream media’s eagerness to label him a racist. Yes, Trump should have more unambiguously spurned racists who invoked his name as inspiration for their violence, but the mainstream media’s coverage and Trump haters’ reaction also showed the knee-jerk, decrepit nature of this country’s discussion on race.
When it was confirmed that a female counter-protester died and more than a dozen were injured, Trump said on Sunday, “We condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry and violence on many sides, on many sides.”
In turn, pundits and politicians alike lambasted Trump’s failure to explicitly name white supremacists in his condemnation.
On CNN’s “State of the Union” yesterday, anchor Jake Tapper asked if Trump was sending a dog whistle to the white supremacists who supported him. To bolster his point, Tapper repeatedly pointed to his interview with Trump in February 2016 where Trump did not explicitly disavow support from former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke.
Nowhere did Tapper point out that two days before his interview with Trump, the presidential candidate was asked at a press conference about Duke’s endorsement and unequivocally declared, “I disavow.”
After his interview with Tapper, Trump reiterated his rejection of Duke’s support on Twitter. Tapper said nothing about that either.
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