In what could be viewed a hat tip to their white nationalist supporters, the Trump White House managed to release a Holocaust Remembrance Day statement that never mentioned Jewish people by name.
The White House said:
It is with a heavy heart and somber mind that we remember and honor the victims, survivors, heroes of the Holocaust. It is impossible to fully fathom the depravity and horror inflicted on innocent people by Nazi terror.
Yet, we know that in the darkest hours of humanity, light shines the brightest. As we remember those who died, we are deeply grateful to those who risked their lives to save the innocent.
In the name of the perished, I pledge to do everything in my power throughout my Presidency, and my life, to ensure that the forces of evil never again defeat the powers of good. Together, we will make love and tolerance prevalent throughout the world.
For the sake of comparison, this was the opening paragraph of President Obama’s 2014 Holocaust Remembrance Day statement, “Each year on this day the world comes together to commemorate a barbaric crime unique in human history. We recall six million Jews and millions of other innocent victims who were murdered in Nazi death camps. We mourn lives cut short and communities torn apart.”
In George W. Bush’s 2008 statement, he didn’t mention the Jews specifically, but he did talk about his recent visit to Israel and the Holocaust Museum, “I was deeply moved by my recent visit to Yad Vashem, Israel’s Holocaust Museum. Sixty-three years after the liberation of Auschwitz, we must continue to educate ourselves about the lessons of the Holocaust, and honor those whose lives were taken as a result of a totalitarian ideology that embraced a national policy of violent hatred, bigotry, and extermination. It is also our responsibility to honor the survivors and those courageous souls who refused to be bystanders, and instead risked their own lives to try to save the Nazis’ intended victims.”
Trump might get the benefit of the doubt if his campaign was so openly supported by white nationalists, and his senior White House advisor wasn’t reported to be a white nationalist and anti-Semite.
The Trump White House’s omission Jews from Holocaust Remembrance Day sends a powerful signal to the racists who supported his candidacy because to some this was no accident. It was a loud and clear message on where this White House will stand on issues of race, bigotry, and discrimination.
Jason is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association