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Sun Jul 21, 2019, 01:56 PM

Ballot box must end Trump's incitement of racism

By Eugene Robinson

The Washington Post

When the racist chant began Wednesday night — “Send her back! Send her back!” — President Trump paused to let the white-supremacist anger he had stoked wash over him. George Wallace would have been so proud.

That moment at a Trump campaign rally in North Carolina was the most chilling I’ve seen in American politics since the days of Wallace and the other diehard segregationists. Egged on by the president of the United States, the crowd was calling for a duly elected member of Congress — Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minnesota, a black woman born in Somalia — to be banished from the country because Trump disapproves of her views.

This hideous display followed Trump’s weekend call for Omar and three other House Democrats, all of them women of color, to “go back” to the “totally broken and crime-infested places from which they came.” All of this is an unmistakable echo of the racist taunts that used to be leveled at minority groups that had the temerity to demand civil rights and the gall to achieve political and economic success: go back to Africa, go back to Mexico, go back to China.

After the election and reelection of the first African American president, one might have thought we were beyond such ugly, desperate racism. To the contrary, perhaps Barack Obama’s tenure surfaced long-buried fear and loathing that made Trump’s ascension possible.

We can leave that for the political scientists to figure out in the fullness of time. Right now, we have an emergency to deal with. Trump has decided to seek a second term by making a naked appeal to white racism. I didn’t think we’d ever see anything worse than his 2016 campaign, which he launched by slandering Mexican immigrants as drug dealers and rapists. Obviously, I was wrong.

https://www.heraldnet.com/opinion/robinson-ballot-box-must-end-trumps-incitement-of-racism/

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