Donald Trump, the 45th President of the United States, is a racist.
This is not a question, but a fact.
A racist, as defined in the Webster’s dictionary, is “a person with a prejudiced belief that one race is superior to others.” Throughout his entire career, Trump has shown that he not only believes, but has executed, the concept that white people are superior to those of color.
"Why are we having all these people from sh*thole countries come here?" Trump said in the Thursday afternoon Oval Office meeting with a handful of members of the House and Senate. “We should bring in more people from places like Norway,” he added. The “s**thole countries” he was referring to in the conversation were Haiti, El Salvador and African nations that lawmakers suggested bringing back immigrant legal protections for. Norway, is a predominately white European country. Haiti, El Salvador, and other African nations are predominantly of color. Trump implied that such nations of color are “sh*tholes” in comparison to a predominately white one. This is blatant racism from the man who is currently the ruler of the free world.
Trump was sitting in an immigration policy meeting denouncing black and brown countries in comparison to white ones. This should not simply be taken as just “tough” language as Trump has tried to describe it Friday morning in a series of tweets attempting to downplay the situation. This Commander in Chief has been in office for over a year now, there’s no excuse for his conduct, he said what he said because he means it. There was no apology for the offense it caused, because he reportedly did a “victory lap” afterward and called his closest allies to boast about it.
Our president was endorsed by the KKK, had a hard time disavowing the affiliation and is now implementing racist ideology in immigration policy. Are we surprised? We shouldn’t be. This was his plan all along.
Before Trump even ran for office, he jumpstarted the “Birther” movement by questioning whether or not then-President Obama was a United States citizen. He had the audacity to demand to see Obama’s birth certificate and made wild claims that he had insiders who informed him the president was born in Kenya. Such ignorance sparked excessive and unnecessary conspiracies over the president’s citizenship that should have been dead-on-arrival. But because we live in a country that places white fears above anything else, we all were forced to see our first Black president have to respond to the dumb requests of a bigot.
“They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists,” was how our current president described Mexicans during his campaign trail in 2016. He held no punches in making sweeping generalizations on undocumented immigrants, or implementing a Muslim ban, but was rather diplomatic on condemning white terrorism in Charlottesville. By making the claim that “both sides” are to blame for the act of white supremacy that led to the murder of a protester, Trump made a false equivalence of painting those who fight racism as being a part of the problem at hand.
But Trump’s racism goes way back several decades from the present. It was clear in 1973 when a federal lawsuit was brought against him and his company for alleged racial discrimination at Trump housing developments in New York. After settling two years later, he had the audacity to try to countersue the Justice Department for $100 million for making false statements. Those allegations were dismissed by the court. In 1989, Trump reportedly spent $85,000 for full-page ads in New York newspapers that said "Bring back the death penalty. Bring back our police!” in a campaign to convict the now-falsely accused Central Park Five. But the Central Park Five, a group of Black and Latino men who were accused of raping a white women, were vindicated in 2002, when their convictions were vacated after a convicted murderer and rapist confessed to the crime backed by DNA evidence. Trump went on to publicly criticize the innocent men after they were awarded a $41 million settlement from New York City in 2014.
So it’s not far fetched to consider our current president a white supremacist after he has arguably invested a great deal of his wealth and power in targeting people of color for over 40 years. From potential housing discrimination to falsely denouncing the citizenship of a Black president -- all of this stems from racism that’s deep seated. Anyone who tries to argue with the facts at this point is either delusional or allergic to the truth.
There’s no need to hear “both sides” on this issue, it’s time to just address the one side that matters: Let’s hold the president accountable on his racism.
The opinions expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of BET Networks.
Ernest Owens is the editor of Philadelphia magazine’s G Philly. He has written for USA Today, NBC News, The Grio, HuffPost and several other major publications. Follow him on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram and ernestowens.com.
(Photo: Mark Makela/Getty Images)