Controversy has surrounded President Trump since the day he descended the escalator in Trump Tower and announced his intention to seek the highest office in our government. Of all the issues roused by the Trump campaign, none has conjured as much emotion as race relations – a subject no less divisive at the one hundred day mark. The first one hundred days of the Trump administration have not been any different.
While many blame the president for the state of race relations in the U.S., the reality is that racial tensions had been growing more strained over the past few years. Racial animosity seems to be at its highest peak since the 1960’s, and it shows no sign of getting better.
While there have been some legitimate cases of racism during President Trump’s first one hundred days, there have also been false accusations of racism and an increase in fake hate crimes. Most of all, we saw the media doing their part to fan the flames of racial discord.
The beloved fourth estate perpetuated the lie that racism motivated the majority of Trump voters. They claim that the reason so many whites voted for the president is that they are afraid of minorities rising and gaining more power. The Washington Post recently published a poll that suggested that racism was the motivating factor for people who voted for President Trump. Liberty Nation’s Graham Noble explained that the Post conducted the survey in a manner designed to paint Trump supporters as bigots:
According to a report in the Daily Caller, the poll did not ask direct questions about strictly racial attitudes; instead, it asked voters how much they agreed with such statements as “Irish, Italians, Jewish and many other minorities overcame prejudice and worked their way up. Blacks should do the same without any special favors,” and “It’s really a matter of some people not trying hard enough; if blacks would only try harder, they could be just as well off as whites.”
Unfortunately, this mistaken belief is still pervasive in our society. The reality is that bigotry does not drive Trump supporters. They supported Trump because they did not want a continuation of the Democrats’ failed policies. As a matter of fact, Trump won a significant number of counties who voted twice for former President Barack Obama. Did these people who voted for a black president decide to become racists in the period of eight years? Of course not.
While the majority of Americans are not racists, it seems there has been a marked increase in the frequency of racial incidents during President Trump’s first one hundred days. We have seen numerous stories of people committing racially-motivated acts. At the New School in New York City, people drew swastikas on doors in one of their residence halls. At the University of California at San Diego, someone drew a swastika on a bus stop. The person wrote the words “Heil Trump” as well.
While there are many legitimate cases of racially-motivated acts, there has also been an increase in incidents involving fake hate. Earlier this year, a student at the University of Michigan said that a man threatened to set her on fire if she refused to remove her hijab. The police found that the student fabricated the story. A black waitress in Ashburn, Virginia stated that a white customer left her a $.01 tip with a note which read: “great service, don’t tip black people.” She received over $3,600 from good Samaritans through an online fundraiser. The problem? Her story was found to be a lie. These are only two of the many examples of situations involving false allegations of racism.
Of course, we cannot forget about the racism on the left. While hurling false accusations of racism at conservatives, they have engaged in their usual hypocritical tolerance. Although they claim to promote acceptance of people of color, they have shown that they are only tolerant of those who subscribe to their leftist ideology.
When Comedian Steve Harvey went to Trump Tower to meet with President Trump before he took office, Harvey received scathing criticism from the left. Professor Marc Lamont Hill referred to Harvey and other prominent black Americans as “mediocre negroes” because they committed the unpardonable sin of speaking with President Trump. This hatred of blacks who don’t toe the leftist line also extended to Senator Tim Scott (R-SC). While addressing Congress, Senator Scott took the time to read some of the racist tweets and emails sent to him by people on the left in response to his support for Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
During the first one hundred days of President Trump’s presidency, race has become an increasingly significant issue. Racial tension is the highest it has been in decades, and there is no sign that these feelings will subside in the near future.
Many on the left – including the establishment media – place the blame on President Trump and conservatives. However, it is the left who continually uses race to polarize the American public. The media has become the left’s primary tool to foment enmity between minorities and whites. Instead of encouraging productive political dialogue, they have chosen to label their political opponents as bigots in an effort to demonize and discredit them.
The government cannot resolve the racial divide in the U.S. as this is a cultural problem. President Trump is not responsible for the racial animosity we are experiencing today. Neither is former President Barack Obama. The American people are responsible for creating our current political climate. If we want to promote unity among Americans of all races, we need to create an environment in which people can speak honestly with one another. The late, great Andrew Breitbart said it best: “Politics is downwind from culture.” When we take it upon ourselves to fix our society, the right governmental policies will follow.
A self-confessed news and political junkie, Jeff’s writing has been featured in Small Business Trends, Business2Community, and The Huffington Post. Born in Southern California and having experienced the 1992 L.A. Riots up close and personal, Jeff's insights are informed by his experiences as a black man and a conservative.