Letter to the editor: Trump makes White Power turn

Photo by Yuri Gripas, Reuters

To the editor:

President George W. Bush’s chief speechwriter, Michael Gerson, has a message for people who are excusing President Trump’s racism. Here’s what Gerson thinks:

I had fully intended to ignore President Trump’s latest round of racially charged taunts against an African American elected official and an African American activist and an African American journalist and a whole city with a lot of African Americans in it.

I had every intention of walking past Trump’s latest outrages and writing about the self-destructive squabbling of the Democratic presidential field, which has chosen to shame former vice president Joe Biden for the sin of being an electable, moderate liberal.

But I made the mistake of pulling James Cone’s “The Cross and the Lynching Tree” off my shelf — a book designed to shatter convenient complacency.

Cone recounts the case of a white mob in Valdosta, Ga., in 1918 that lynched an innocent man named Haynes Turner. Turner’s enraged wife, Mary, promised justice for the killers. The sheriff responded by arresting her and then turning her over to the mob, which included women and children.

According to one source, Mary was “stripped, hung upside down by the ankles, soaked with gasoline and roasted to death. In the midst of this torment, a white man opened her swollen belly with a hunting knife, and her infant fell to the ground and was stomped to death.”

God help us.

It is hard to write the words.

This evil — the evil of white supremacy, resulting in dehumanization, inhumanity and murder — is the worst stain, the greatest crime, of U.S. history. It is the thing that nearly broke the nation. It is the thing that proved generations of Christians to be vicious hypocrites. It is the thing that turned normal people into moral monsters, capable of burning a grieving widow to death and killing her child.

When the president of the United States plays with that fire or takes that beast out for a walk, it is not just another political event, not just a normal day in campaign 2020. It is a cause for shame. It is the violation of martyrs’ graves. It is obscene graffiti on the Lincoln Memorial. It is, in the eyes of history, the betrayal — the re-betrayal — of Haynes and Mary Turner and their child.

And all of this is being done by an ignorant and arrogant narcissist reviving racist tropes for political gain, indifferent to the wreckage he is leaving, the wounds he is ripping open.

Like, I suspect, many others, I am finding it hard to look at resurgent racism as just one in a series of presidential offenses or another in a series of Republican errors. Racism is not just another wrong. The Antietam battlefield is not just another plot of ground. The Edmund Pettus Bridge is not just another bridge. The balcony outside Room 306 at the Lorraine Motel is not just another balcony.

As U.S. history hallows some causes, it magnifies some crimes.

What does all this mean politically? It means that Trump’s divisiveness is getting worse, not better. He makes racist comments, appeals to racist sentiments and inflames racist passions. The rationalization that he is not, deep down in his heart, really a racist is meaningless.

Trump’s continued offenses mean that a large portion of his political base is energized by racist tropes and the language of white grievance. And it means — whatever their intent — that those who play down, or excuse, or try to walk past these offenses are enablers.

Some political choices are not just stupid or crude.

They represent the return of our country’s cruelest, most dangerous passion. Such racism indicts Trump. Treating racism as a typical or minor matter indicts us.

This is from a Republican and is as spot-on and eloquent as it gets.

Blanche White


  1. Such bs. Everything Trump said about Baltimore is true. It had nothing to do with racism. You people aren’t smart enough obviously to know the difference. Just another city like Chicago run by liberals into the ground. Try doing some research before you post such bull.

  2. James Cone? Really? The same guy that wrote Black Theology, Black Power? Was a liberal, of course, who preached against whites in his own black Episcopal church. Not to mention the people in the story were democrats and killing in the name of democratic power. I have yet to see any kind of racism from Trump. Not one racist word. Saying that we are a nation of laws? That’s racist? Baltimore is rat infested? The people who live there, including black men and women, said it wasn’t racist. It was true, and they needed help getting the city back. It’s on video. You can look it up. While the dems were screaming racism, the conservatives were driving to Baltimore to help organize and clean up the streets of trash and do what they could. Just because the one who ran the district happened to be black doesn’t mean it was racist to say. The only ones skin color mattered to were the Democratic party. They shut up when they realized the clean-up crew of conservatives was there, helping instead of arguing with them about color and racism. The whole racist thing is a big can of worms Obama opened up before he got out of office. You can look that up too. Do I even have to say, Don’t look it up on CNN? Lol. No, James Cone was a man who built his whole life around being black and a minority and made decent money doing so. Well, here is a bit of his own thinking. Let’s see who is racist. “So-called Christianity, as commonly practiced in the United States, is actually the racist Antichrist. “Theologically,” Cone affirms, “Malcolm X was not far wrong when he called the white man ‘the devil.'” The false Christianity of the white-devil oppressor must be replaced by an authentic Christianity fully identified with the poor and oppressed.[38].. Wow! So Trump is racist? I don’t think so. Cone was just a well educated man, (which shouldn’t happen in such a white man’s racist world) who took his own skin color and turned it into a reason to wake up everyday and be a victim. Racisism is spouted so easily by the left that it has lost its true meaning now. The white supremacists in this country are about a handful. The fact is if 100 supremacists marched and yelled actual racial slurs, there would be 500 white people there to stop them. That’s statistical fact. Racism is a problem, and it comes from all sides, but is it a epidemic? Absolutely not. It is a tool by which the same ones that held slaves all those years ( the ones crying racism now) try to tell the people, especially black people, that they are a target and if I get elected, I will do something about it. All these years and they have done nothing. Why? They quell racism and they have no issue to campaign on. It’s all they have ever known. You can see that clearly. Open your eyes.

  3. “Eloquent” and “spot on” as an example of radical left narrative. If Gerson claims to be Republican, it is to give the impression of dissent as remarkable. He details a horrific story, then says, “It is hard to write the words.” He is a liar. He deliberately wrote the words to stir emotional response. The story was irrelevant except as an example of radicalism. Blanche, it appears that you rely on the major networks for credible reporting, but they have become conduits for the far left. There are alternative media sources worth consideration that help put things in perspective.

  4. Blanche, I strongly encourage you to read the following before the 2020 election:
    1. The Big Lie by Dinesh D’Souza (who was not born here but has since become a U.S. citizen)
    2. The Death of a Nation (by Dinesh D’Souza)
    3. Unfreedom of the Press (by Mark Levin)
    (I could name many more, but this would be a good start.)

    …and listen to the following:
    4. Podcasts of The Candace Owens Show on PragerU (online).
    (I could name many more, but this would be a good start.)

    The three books above are not “opinion-pieces”. They are stock full of rock-solid facts backed up by footnote after footnote.

    The main problems with your letter are in the first two paragraphs.
    1. You fail to give any context to President Trump’s comments about Baltimore. You seem to just watch national mainstream media, then regurgitate it.

    Mr. Trump did not just randomly pick out the city of Baltimore. Eli Cummings, the elected official I am sure you are talking about, unnecessarily “went ballistic” at the DHS head in a House committee hearing who was doing his best to deal with patrol of the border. (See: Washington Examiner- Elijah Cummings goes ballistic at DHS head during hearings.) Then Trump responded in a tweet that (paraphrasing) “…maybe Eli should worry more about his district before he decides to yell at border patrol…” who are doing their best at the border under horrible conditions that remain horrible due to the House of Representatives’ unwillingness to make simple, meaningful changes to existing laws.

    Context is everything and cannot be ignored.

    2. Joe Biden is no moderate. Have you not seen any debates? And like the national mainstream media (CNN; MSNBC; ABC; CBS; NBC; New York Times; Washington Post), you willfully ignore Joe Biden’s blatant, racist comments of the past and the present while regurgitating mainstream media narratives.

    3. When Bernie Sanders, in an interview with the Baltimore Sun in 2015 describing a neighborhood in Baltimore, said, “You would think that you were in a Third World country,” where was the ‘outrage’? I guess there can only be an outrage if you do not get in the Democrat, progressive line.

    4. Like the three books suggested above point out brilliantly and truthfully, you take something that Democrats did in the past and re-word it so that the word ‘Democrat(s)’ is no longer in the narrative. Instead of ‘white mob’, you should be more truthful and say, ‘Democrat white mob’. Instead of ‘a white man’, you should be more truthful and say, ‘Democrat white man’. It’s not the skin color. It’s the ideology! And it originated from progressive, evolutionary, ideology!

    It’s this type of intentional word play that Democrats have masterfully used for the past 100 years that has subtly, cunningly, craftily taken the responsibility of so many Democrat sins of the past and projected them on an entire group that magically no longer contains the word ‘Democrat’. Instead, ‘Democrat’ is left out and replaced with the words whites; white man; America; etc. Once this subtle move has been made, then more subtle moves are made to project these sins on the Democrat opponent (Republicans; conservatives; etc.) This is called ‘psychological projection’, and Democrats in powerful positions in government, academia, media and Hollywood have become masters at this.

    Blanche, it seems you have fallen victim to this ‘psychological projection’. Read the books. Learn the Truth!


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