The mainstream media (and its local minions) live in an echo chamber of left-leaning commentary that promotes the Trump-racist narrative without a single feeble shred of objectivity. In keeping with this degraded standard of journalism, don’t expect this piece to entertain oft-repeated claims of Trump’s racism. The media would like you to believe that this is a settled debate. However, that’s not even remotely true.
Let’s consider Trump’s actions as president. The Trump administration allocated record-high spending for Historical Black Colleges and Universities. This is important because many of these prized African American institutions have been financially struggling. Additionally, his education department forgave over $322 million in debt to HBCUs grappling to recover from Hurricane Katrina. It’s hard to square this away with a secret racist conspiracy.
Trump also has a very interesting history of throwing his weight behind black people. He appointed the first black female marine corps general. He has openly endorsed black candidates for public office such as Michigan's John James for U.S. Senate and even more recently Kentucky’s Daniel Cameron for state attorney general. Not to mention his support for our HUD secretary and cabinet member, Ben Carson. Again, this isn’t conclusive; just a primer.
The racist-Trump narrative really falls apart when we consider that the president endorsed and signed a criminal justice reform bill that has overwhelmingly benefited people of color. Likewise, Trump has used his executive powers to literally bust black drug dealers out of prison. Trump has also played a role in upgrading Rev. Martin Luther King's birthplace into a National Historical Park. Furthermore, he recently helped to establish the home of Mississippi civil rights hero, Medger Evers, as a National Monument. Trump posthumously pardoned the wrongfully accused black boxer Jack Johnson. Despite what you believe about the Central Park 5, Trump is responsible for freeing more black people from prison than current progressive frontrunner Joe Biden, a lead architect for our racist system of mass incarceration.
So what about that allegedly racist tweet that drew widespread condemnation? Well, this is also a case of media malfeasance. On what earth does a racist follow, “go back to where you came from” with “comeback and show us how”? They just don’t; yet, Trump states that in the very same tweet. If you consider his ignorant and erroneous comments about Mexicans, you’d be forgiven for not knowing that Mexican isn’t a race nor is Mexico the entire Hispanic world. The media purposely blur the lines on race, ethnicity, and nationality to push bogus conspiracies.
This isn’t an exhaustive list of Trump’s olive branches to the minority communities. Everything from hosting black leadership summits to opportunity zones counters a media narrative built around cherry-picking Twitter lines and gross omission bias. Trump has been shameless in his open friendships black celebrities and courting the Jewish vote. If Trump is the new face of white supremacy, we shouldn’t be panicking at all. We should all breathe a collective sigh of relief.
Williams is the policy director for the North Dakota Young Republicans. He’s an active economist who has worked for numerous liberty-based academic research centers and think-tanks. He earned a bachelor's degree in economics at Florida International University and his master's in financial economics from the University of Detroit Mercy. He is a co-host of The Policy radio show on 88.1 KPPP-FM and a regular contributor to The Forum's opinion pages.