Opinions

Trump is a klutz, a bully and a liar. But he’s no white supremacist.

As our friends on the left labor mightily to tar President Donald Trump and anybody else who disagrees with them as raving, white supremacist racists, you have to wonder how far they are willing to go. Stretching the truth certainly appears to be no problem for them.

The cornerstone of their frenzy to smear Trump, and his supporters, ahead of the 2020 presidential election is an outright myth. It is a gross mischaracterization of what Trump said after a 20-year-old lunatic at the white nationalist “Unite the Right” rally on Aug. 12, 2017, in Charlottesville, Virginia, plowed his car into a crowd during protests over removal of a Robert E. Lee statue. Heather Heyer, 32, was killed and 28 others injured.

Our betters and their media minions quickly pounced on Trump’s late and incredibly clumsy reaction a few days later during a Trump Tower news conference as blatantly racist, claiming he responded to the violence by claiming there were "very fine people on both sides;” that he defended neo-Nazis, white supremacists and white nationalists.

That is demonstrably untrue, but the falsehood routinely and repeatedly is spread far and wide by the media and Democrats who know better. It shows up in newspapers. It is breathless fodder for the talking heads. Only days ago, it was repeated on a National Public Radio show as proof-positive of Trump’s disgusting racial bias.

What Trump said, or was trying to say, in the disjointed, meandering news conference was that there were “very fine people on both sides” of the debate about displaying Confederate monuments in public locations. He said nothing about white supremacists, or white nationalists or neo-Nazis being “very fine people.”

Repeated reports to the contrary by some of the nation’s largest news organizations are untrue. Here is what he said during the news conference after a reporter told him: “The neo-Nazis started this thing. They showed up in Charlottesville.”

“Excuse me,” Trump said. “They didn’t put themselves down as neo-Nazis, and you had some very bad people in that group. But you also had people that were very fine people on both sides. You had people in that group — excuse me, excuse me. I saw the same pictures as you did. You had people in that group that were there to protest the taking down of, to them, a very, very important statue and the renaming of a park from Robert E. Lee to another name.”

Responding to a question moments later, Trump said, “I’m not talking about the neo-Nazis and the white nationalists, because they should be condemned totally.”

In several later statements, Trump clearly condemned the Charlottesville violence and its perpetrators. On Aug. 14, 2017, after stinging criticism of his earlier remarks, Trump told the nation, “Racism is evil, and those who cause violence in its name are criminals and thugs, including the KKK, neo-Nazis, white supremacists, and other hate groups that are repugnant to everything we hold dear as Americans.”

Nonetheless, the leftist herd running for president in 2020 seized on the calumny as if it were manna from heaven. Joe Biden even trotted it out when he finally announced his bid for the presidency. “Charlottesville Virginia” were the first two words he spoke in his campaign announcement video. Nowadays, he is content to simply compare Trump to the Ku Klux Klan and label him a white supremacist.

Cory Booker, another passenger in the Democratic clown car, continues to accuse Trump of coddling racists, of “failing to even condemn them where we saw in Charlottesville where he talks about there being good people on both sides.” Sen. Kamala Harris, also running in 2020, accused Trump of being a racist and “cited (his) past comments defending both sides during the white supremacist march in Charlottesville, Virginia, in 2017 and his rhetoric on U.S. immigration,” Politico reported.

It goes on and on. “If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it,” Joseph Goebbels once observed.

There usually is no defending Trump. He is a klutz, a bully, a liar. He has a big mouth. He says things that unnecessarily tarnish the presidency and embarrass this country. He runs with his filters turned off and he often is insulting, combative, denigrating to women, Muslims and Hispanics. He was my second-worst pick for president. He beat out my worst pick, Hillary Clinton.

But none of Trump’s shortcomings gives the news media or Trump’s political opponents carte blanche to not only ignore the truth, but spread the lie. Certainly, journalists can see knowingly repeating a lie is malfeasance. You have to wonder: If they hate Trump enough to do that, can they be trusted about anything?

Charlottesville has become the left’s “Big Lie.” Goebbels must be chuckling in his special corner of hell.

Paul Jenkins is editor of the AnchorageDailyPlanet.com, a division of Porcaro Communications.

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