*The following is an opinion column by R Muse*
It’s pretty clear by now, or it should be, that Donald J. Trump is a certified racist, a bigot and an aspiring fascist dictator; it’s why he easily won the Republican nomination for the presidency. The Republican base loved the idea of one of their own in the White House so they eagerly flocked to the polls in the primaries to see their dream through to fruition. Now, according to some interesting reporting from the Associated Press, it appears that the bigotry and racism endemic to Donald Trump and his base of support is rampant among the television celebrity’s paid campaign staff.
After examining more than 50 current and former paid Trump campaign staffers’ social media accounts, the AP discovered that some of their deep-seated beliefs include:
Muslims cannot be considered as “fit” to be U.S. Citizens; Mexicans with accents are a valid source of ridicule; Republicans should be preparing for civil and religious war; and Secretary of State John Kerry deserves to be hanged. These people are as driven by hate and bigotry as the base, and it is precisely why Trump hired them.
The report did claim that the majority of Trump’s staff were just dedicated, “enthusiastic partisans,” but a fair number expressed opinions and beliefs that were “overtly racially charged” and ardently supportive of violent acts and broad hostility towards Muslims, everything one expected from bigots and racists permeating the Republican base. The entire Republican movement is as nasty as Trump, his staff, and the Republican base, but most of them have the wherewithal to keep their hate under wraps and behind closed doors. That’s not the case with some of Trump’s campaign staff.
A couple of the examples in the AP’s report were of a Virginia field organizer who said the for sure, the Muslims were intent on imposing Sharia Law on Americans. And that, “Those who understand Islam for what it is are gearing up for the fight. We need Islam control, not gun control.” Another staffer complained that the appointment of a Muslim-American judge in New York “…is how American culture will end.” The staffer’s reasoning was that a Muslim judge would implement Sharia law.
Another staffer, one on Trump’s advance team, posted a video of an African American man “eating fried chicken and criticizing fellow Blacks for ignorance, irresponsibility, and having too many children.” In the video the man asks other African Americans, “Why are you mad about slavery? Y’all weren’t no damn slaves.”
It is noteworthy, and not unexpected, that the Associated Press was unbiased and took an equally long hard look at the Clinton campaign staffers’ social media postings and found “nothing inflammatory.” Just to cover all their bases and proactively snuff out any possible “bias” complaints by Republicans or the Trump, the AP also reviewed images that were attached to the over “19,000 stolen internal emails from the Democratic National Committee for racially or religiously inflammatory memes;” again, they found nothing of note and certainly nothing inflammatory.
Trump’s staffers’ lack of restraint in expressing their vile bigotry and racism proudly and publicly is unique to campaigns for obvious reasons; even long-time Republican political operatives understand that vetting prospective hires is in their electoral best interests. In fact, veteran campaign officials such as one of Willard Romney’s top campaign aides, Beth Meyers, said that carefully monitoring social media postings of staffers has “long been a standard practice. In vetting a prospective staffer, I’m not sure where the line would be for not hiring someone or simply asking them to take something down from social media, but there is a line.”
Ms. Myers doesn’t know if Trump or any of his senior campaign staff did not carefully vet prospective staffers and weed out those who failed to share the Donald’s particular brand of hate and bigotry. One seriously suspects that that is the case and if not; why did Donald Trump just hire an avowed white supremacist to run his campaign?
Trump certainly “carefully vetted” Breitbart News’ chairman Stephen K. Bannon before handing the keys to his campaign over to a racist. And, if there’s any doubt that Bannon is a racist, on the former Klan leader David Duke’s show the current senate candidate and his co-host Don Advo were celebrating “the Bannon hire means we’ve [white supremacists] taken over” the Republican Party.
One wonders why the AP had to scour through, likely, thousands of social media postings of over 50 Trump campaign staffers or what the respected news organization hoped or thought it might discover as “shocking.” They could have just as easily perused Donald Trump’s Twitter feed from the past six months and figured out that Trump had an expectation that his employees would express the same hate and bigotry as a campaign tactic as he has to great effect. Racism and bigotry are filthy diseases and to think they would not be as endemic in Trump’s campaign staff as they are in the conservative movement’s base is the thinking of an ignorant or naïve mind.
Audio engineer and instructor for SAE. Writes op/ed commentary supporting Secular Humanist causes, and exposing suppression of women, the poor, and minorities. An advocate for freedom of religion and particularly, freedom of NO religion.
Born in the South, raised in the Mid-West and California for a well-rounded view of America; it doesn’t look good.
Former minister, lifelong musician, Mahayana Zen-Buddhist.