Jul 24, 2019, 2:37 PM
Journalist ID: 1842
News Code: 83409896
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Racism ruling Trump's policies: US author

Tehran, July 24, IRNA – An American author told IRNA in an interview that since Donald Trump became president in the US, he has used "racism as a political tool".

"United States President Donald Trump has used racism as a political tool since his entry into the world of politics. During the administration of President Barack Obama, he accused him of not having been born in the US," Robert Fantina told IRNA.

Asked about Trump's comments against four Democratic congresswomen of color, Fantina said, "Trump said that Mexican immigrants were rapists; he attempted to ban people, mostly Muslims, from Arab nations from entering the United States, and, following a racist rally in the US that resulted in the death of a counter-protester."

"There were ‘good people’ on both sides. These are just a few examples of his continuous racist rhetoric."

He added that this kind of language motivates his base of support, including white evangelicals and working class white males without a university education; "these are the people Trump needs in order to win re-election."

"[Trump] is a man without principles, and will do and say whatever he feels necessary to reach his goals, regardless of how disreputable those actions or words, or the goals themselves, may be."

About the possibility of Trump's losing some of his fans that may go to the Democrats, he said, "Democrats have pushed back strongly against his words, but Trump never had any interest in courting their votes anyway; he knew they would never vote for him."

"What Trump risks with this disgusting language is the independent vote that any candidate needs in order to win a national election. He also risks losing the less rabid member of the right-wing: truly religious people who believe that all men and women are created equal in the sight of God, and strive to live by that belief."

"While Trump always has an eye on the upcoming election, he will say and do anything as long as it causes the crowds to cheer him."

About Trump's supporters chanting "send her back" at his rally in North Carolina on Thursday, he Fantina said, "This could certainly backfire. During the campaign for the presidency in 2020, Trump’s opponents may chant “send him back” to his reality television program."

"They may also point out that two of his three wives are immigrants, but since they are white, he isn’t interested in ‘sending them back’; it is only minority races and religions that in his twisted view don’t belong in the US."

"His selectivity on who he would ‘send’ back (people of color), and which immigrants can remain with his approval, will only emphasize his inherent, blatant racism. The almost universal support that Trump has among elected Republican officials may certainly damage their re-election chances, since by approving his racist language and actions, they show themselves to be as racist as he is."

Answering a question about one of Trump's tweets in which he wrote, “I can tell you that they have made Israel feel abandoned by the US,” and why some progressive Democrats are accused of being anti-Semitic, he said.

"Trump appeals to white evangelicals in many ways, and one is by fostering their bizarre belief that the land which the entity known as Israel currently occupies is the ‘promised land’, granted by God to the Jewish people."

"The four members of Congress that Trump singled out for criticism in that particular tweet – Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan – have made statements indicating their recognition of the illegality and brutality of the Israel occupation of Palestine, and their desire to stop US funding of it. By mentioning Israel in that tweet, Trump was able to raise one of the issues of great importance to a major segment of his base of support."

This is not reflective of public opinion in the U.S., opinion that the Democrats have finally recognized. But Trump is nothing if not short-sighted; as long as his rallies are filled with crowds applauding him and chanting ‘send them back’, or some equally repulsive refrain, he is happy.

About the House's move to vote on Tuesday to condemn as Trump’s remarks against the four congresswomen of color, he said that the move was a "politically motivated" "symbolic" one.

"It passed with just four Republicans supporting it. This was a move by the Democratic Party to attempt to take the high ground … However, Democratic presidents in the recent past have demonstrated their hostility towards women, people of African descent and Muslims, so while the Democratic Party is far, far more diverse, and therefore representative of the United States than the Republican Party, Democratic Party members cannot be seen as potential saviors for the US."

Fantina said that it doesn’t significantly detract from the importance of this vote, which condemned as racist the words of a sitting president. The move should have a profound impact on the citizenry.

"The US has made some progress in overcoming racism since the decade of the 1960s, although not nearly as much as government officials proclaim. This resolution by the US House of Representatives is a stark reminder that blatant racism still exists in the highest levels of government."

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