Trump has long discriminated against African Americans going back to the lawsuits over discriminating in rental housing in NYC in the 1970s. He criticized his casino employees for having Black accountants rather than Jews. His birtherism was grounded in racism. His campaign kicked off by calling all Mexican immigrants rapists. He often calls immigrants animals. Oh, and it is probably not an accident that he has surrounded himself with white supremacists:
- Jeff Sessions who was too racist to be a federal judge in the 1980s (more than a few GOP Senators agreed with the Democrats) but sufficiently racist to be Attorney General;
- Stephen Miller, who was reviled for his racism and xenophobia going way back to when he was in high school;
- Steve Bannon, who is often said not to be really racist, but just uses racism as a political strategy. Sure, go ahead and try to make that distinction. I don't buy it. Not at all.
What to do? See something, say something, of course. Call out the white supremacy, rather than referring to alt-right or other glosses. Put pressure on any and all politicians to take a stand so that we can identify who needs our opposition and our support. Put pressure on the media to stop the false equivalence machines--perhaps Trump's latest statements will at least put those machines on pause.
It will take more than just 2018 and 2020, as this stuff is not new, but Trump has given these deplorable people cover and permission. We need to return to a time where these people were ashamed and embarrassed and marginalized. As always, the only way out is through.