By Carla Herreria
President Donald Trump had a chance to explicitly denounce white supremacy and racism on Saturday after violence broke out at a white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, leaving three dead ― one 32-year-old woman, who was struck by a car, and two state troopers, whose helicopter crashed outside the city while they were responding to the situation ― and at least 35 others injured.
But instead of specifically criticizing members of the Ku Klux Klan, the white supremacists or the neo-Nazis who brought torches and bats to the rally, Trump blamed the unrest on “many sides.”
In fact, Trump commented on the fighting in Charlottesville several times on Saturday ― on Twitter and in front of the press ― but none of his remarks named the violence for what it was: a fight over white supremacy.
So people did it for him.
“White supremacists are bad & wrong.”
There. Just copy & paste this, @POTUS. That’s all we need from you right.
— Kumail Nanjiani (@kumailn) August 12, 2017
Just say the words: “Radical White Supremacist Terrorism”
— Borzou Daragahi 🖊🗒 (@borzou) August 12, 2017
Celebrities, citizens and politicians from both sides of the aisle slammed Trump for failing to condemn the obvious and dropping the ball on moral leadership.
Mr. President – we must call evil by its name. These were white supremacists and this was domestic terrorism. https://t.co/PaPNiPPAoW
— Cory Gardner (@SenCoryGardner) August 12, 2017
No, Mr. President. This is a provocative effort by Neo-Nazis to foment racism and hatred and create violence. Call it out for what it is. https://t.co/WibPqkLsLa
— Bernie Sanders (@SenSanders) August 12, 2017
Trump can’t even say neo-Nazis are bad without both-sidesing it and he can’t even do THAT without bragging about himself
— Patrick Monahan (@pattymo) August 12, 2017
— Nancy Pelosi (@NancyPelosi) August 12, 2017
The white supremacists and their bigotry do not represent our great country. All Americans should condemn this vile hatred. #Charlottesville
— Jeb Bush (@JebBush) August 12, 2017
The views fueling the spectacle in Charlottesville are repugnant. Let it only serve to unite Americans against this kind of vile bigotry.
— Paul Ryan (@SpeakerRyan) August 12, 2017