Trump Exemplifies Imbedded Racism

Donald+Trump+speaks+at+the+White+house.
Donald Trump speaks at the White house.

Donald Trump speaks at the White house.

YouTube | White House Channel

YouTube | White House Channel

Donald Trump speaks at the White house.

Jayda Delatorre, Staff Writer

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Donald Trump: an economic leader, social figure, and in 2016, America’s 45th president. Everyone knows him; everyone has their opinions on him. Trump also has quite a bit of opinions himself, which has been seen yet again when he supposedly referred to many African countries and Haiti in particular as “Shithole countries.” Trump has again denied these accusations, but the fact that he could even be accused of such a thing and it wouldn’t be unusual for him just shows how normalized making offensive comments have become.

This brings us to the question: Why is someone who constantly has to defend himself from being a racist even allowed to be in charge of this country? Why is contemporary racism so often euphemized and allowed to remain as a constant in the background of our country?

Even if Trump didn’t make the expletive-laden comment, over the past two years, there have been endless examples of his blatant disrespect and arrogance, especially whenever he talks about someone who isn’t a white, upper middle-class man. Trump and our current government has enabled a new wave of violence and racism throughout America.

Unfortunately, this inbred racism is our country’s lineage, our culture. In 1619, colonists brought the first slaves to Jamestown to aid with cash crop production. This ended over 200 years later, but the ideas and morals passed down from the era did not. The idea of white supremacy has lingered in our home and constantly keeps us aware of its presence. Police brutality. Cultural appropriation. Racial privileges. All these things continue to give power to those who always have had it, and keep those who don’t in line.

So many people try to insist that America the great is forgiving and sheltering. Our Statue of Liberty, the figure we praise so much, holds a tablet on which Emma Lazarus’s poem reads“Give me your tired, your poor,/ Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.” Our country has sewn slavery and all the principles that goes along with it right into our flag, and then expects us to pledge allegiance to it every day. Our country promises liberty and justice for all, and then proceeds to demonize those who need refuge the most and violate their basic rights on the daily.

According to the man representing our country, Mexicans are criminals and rapists, women are just targets for sexual assault, all Muslims must be kept out of the country, and Nigerian immigrants need to “go back to their huts.” This is just the tip of the iceberg on some of the comments Trump has made in the past years, and the list goes on and on. Everyone is allowed to have opinions, but there is a difference between having opinions and being blatantly racist, and I think everyone knows that Trump has got some racial bias going on. His comments push back all the progress we have made in this country and allow the close minded to feel brazen. According to CNN, hate crimes in 2016 were some of the highest they’ve ever been. In fact, within 10 days after Trump’s election, there was a reported 867 hate crimes recorded. Imagine how many acts of violence went unreported.

Last year, Aug.11, the white nationalists gathered together in Charlottesville to protest the removal of a statue of Confederate general Robert. E Lee. A group of white mostly males, many of them armed, came to a public park in Virginia and marched, screaming “White lives Matter” on repeat, while city officials said they were exercising their “freedom of speech”.

Charlottesville Alt-Right protesters carrying Swastikas and shields. Photo by Tony Crider at https://flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/35780274914

The freedom of speech mattered more than the three people who lost their lives. On Twitter, Our president commented on Charlottesville, saying there were some “fine people” protesting there, as noted by The Atlantic. Not once did he condemn the racism, the violence, the hatred present in that crowd. Here we are, six months later, and it seems everyone has forgotten about this, but nobody has forgotten to be just as aggressive towards people of color.
This is the problem with America. As a country, we portray this beautiful country of hard workers and the underdogs who made it. We reinforce the idea that we are survivors, that the American dream can be there for whoever works hard. We long for power, to be the best country there is, to have such a sense of superiority. But when will it be enough? We make bombs, and we spend money, and we get involved in wars that don’t concern us, with a smile on our faces. The armored exterior of this country gets polished on the daily, while inside, the people who hold our body up are treated like shit. People of color have had their names thrown through the mud throughout history. White culture (or the lack of culture) has belittled so many of the people who have shaped our world in so many ways. Can you imagine listening to the radio, listening to songs that only fall into a genre with European lineage? Can you imagine sports without people of color? Doctors, lawyers, our last president, these people are so important and have worked so hard to be where they are in life. Can you imagine history without so many historical figures who were not white, who fought for many of the things that are taken for granted nowadays? Even if they aren’t ridiculously successful, sometimes just surviving in a society that is often set up against you is a challenge.

It is understandable that some people are raised to believe such hateful ideas from an early age, but that doesn’t make it okay. As a society, especially in an age where our president is allowed to make hurtful, disrespectful comments just for the fun of it, we cannot let this lingering racism go unnoticed. People say racist things as a joke, maybe not even with the intent to be racist, but so often are the things people joke and laugh about are a harsh reality for many. There are so many funnier things to joke about than oppression, and the line between funny and ignorant can often become blurred, as we have seen with @realdonaldtrump’s tweets on Twitter. Don’t let this lingering racism take root again in a country where it has had such a power in the past. Join a rally, speak out for those who have been silenced, have some compassion and forethought before you speak. Do something, anything, before we end up destroying a decade of progress and reverting back to an oppressive pretentious society as we once were.

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