*The following is an opinion column by R Muse*
As this column has noted more than a couple of times during this terribly long presidential campaign, it is a fairly big deal when a candidate is considered so incredibly superior to their opponent that some media outlet, like a newspaper, gives a ringing endorsement. Although endorsements for Republican standard bearer and bigoted fascist Donald J. Trump have been few and far between, it would be negligent and unfair to ignore an endorsement from his staunchest demographic; particularly after commenting on endorsements for Hillary Clinton by the Washington Post and New York Times. So, in the spirit of fairness, it was probably very good news for the Trump campaign that the Ku Klux Klan’s official newspaper endorsed the hotel magnate and white supremacist on Wednesday.
In the latest edition of the KKK’s official newspaper, “the Crusader,” the one with a picture of Donald Trump gracing the cover, the editors gave Donald J. Trump a “glowing endorsement” and support for his candidacy and promised that Trump is finally bringing about “a resurgence of white supremacy.”
It is noteworthy that the KKK is second only to the Republican Party as America’s largest “de facto white identity organization.” It is only the past year that the GOP abandoned its typical electoral strategy of using subtle “dog whistles” to garner a majority of white racists’ votes and opted for overt white racism. Since that abandonment is primarily due to Donald Trump abandoning any pretense of “dog whistle” racism and bigotry, the Ku Klux Klan feels emboldened that one of their brethren is seeking the highest office in the land. Trump has given white supremacists a clear signal that “making America great again” means making America white and Christian; something the Founding Fathers opposed and the Constitution prohibits.
In part, the Crusader’s endorsement sought to clarify whatever misconception voters might have had that Donald Trump’s campaign slogan, “Make America Great Again,” is not in any way, shape or form “race neutral” or about freedom of religion. The KKK paper wrote:
“’Make American Great Again!’ It is a slogan that has been repeatedly used by Donald Trump in his campaign for the presidency. You can see it on the shirts, buttons, posters and ball caps such as the one being worn here by Trump speaking at a recent rally . . . But can it happen? Can America really be great again? This is what we will soon found out! While Trump wants to make America great again, we have to ask ourselves, What made America great in the first place? The short answer to that is simple. America was great not because of what our forefathers did — but because of who are forefathers were, America was founded as a White Christian Republic. And as a White Christian Republic it became great.”
So, not only is the KKK endorsement categorically racist, it is fundamentally false. White supremacists are either liars on par with their hero or too stupid to comprehend America was never founded as a white Christian Republic according to the white Founding Fathers. But that is not the point. The point is that Trump has incited the white supremacist sect in America and now that he is their champion, he can stop the pretense that he is not a white supremacist that fits perfectly with the KKK mold. This endorsement should not be a surprise because barely two weeks ago the editor of the white supremacist website Daily Stormer, Andrew Anglin, told the Los Angeles Times that “Virtually every alt-right Nazi I know is volunteering for the Trump campaign.”
With his campaign struggling, it is not certain whether Mr. Trump will embrace the white supremacist newspaper endorsement or pretend he has never heard the term “white supremacy.” It is, after all what he said in the past. Just six months ago when reporters asked Trump about earning an endorsement from the former Imperial Wizard of the Ku Klux Klan, David Duke, Trump lied and said, “I don’t know anything about what you’re even talking about with white supremacy or white supremacist. So I don’t know. I don’t know. I know nothing about white supremacists.”
Of course everything issuing forth from Donald Trump’s racist mouth is a lie, but to say he knows “nothing about white supremacists” has got to be on the same mendacity level as claiming he respects women. For example, Fortune reported that for not knowing anything about white supremacists, it is curious that Donald Trump has personally ‘retweeted’ “at least 75 separate posts directly from other white supremacists.”
And, this is not just down to Donald Trump’s white supremacist leanings. The leadership of the Republican Party gladly accepted the white supremacists’ support for the GOP standard bearer when, during Trump’s acceptance speech at the RNC, the Party displayed “Twitter comments of a known racist on four large screens” around the venue for all the other white supremacist Republicans to see, to celebrate, and to draw encouragement from.
Although Donald Trump has worked diligently to earn an endorsement from the Ku Klux Klan, and although the GOP has been pandering to the white supremacist crowd for decades, it is fair to say the Republican Party’s white supremacy and rank racism is now popular among the faithful and considered mainstream on the right.
Of course the Crusader’s endorsement is not the kind of support, or characterization, any decent human being would relish. However, with Donald Trump struggling to garner electoral support and to feed his oversized ego, it is fair to say that Trump will accept the endorsement as a sign that the time is right to officially ramp up his appeal to bigots and hate-mongers on the fringes of the “alt-right Nazi” movement with a new campaign pledge to “make America white and Christian” like the KKK demands.