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McFeely: Trump is a racist and that's what 2020 is all about

Election will be America's moment of truth and we'll find out whether we are better than this or not

Donald Trump
President Donald Trump waits at the podium during a press conference with President of the Republic of Poland Andrzej Duda on Wednesday at the White House. Washington Post photo by Jabin Botsford
We are part of The Trust Project.

Donald Trump is a racist.

It is no longer a question, if it really ever was for the guy who launched his political career questioning the citizenship and birth country of America's first black president.

Seems now that the blatant birtherism was a pretty strong clue.

Not to mention Charlottesville and the atrocities at the southwest border.

When the president of the United States tells four minority women to go back to the countries from which they came, which he did, it cannot be spun away as a "If you don't love this country, then leave" comment. Because that's not what Trump said in his infamous Twitter rant.

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He told four minority women to go back to where they came from, like an ignoramus in a parking lot would yell. This is what Trump has brought to the most powerful and esteemed office in the world — redneck racism.
It mattered not that three of the four Congresswomen to which Trump referred — Reps. Rashiba Tlaib, D-Mich., Ayanna Pressley, D-Mass., and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., — were born in the United States. And the fourth, Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., is a naturalized citizen who legally immigrated from Somalia.

Go back to where you came from. That what it's come to.

The usual suspects did what they normally do. Sen. Kevin Cramer crawled into Trump's man-womb and Sen. John Hoeven quivered in a corner. Rep. Kelly Armstrong, with an immigrant wife, did what a guy with an immigrant wife had to do. Unless you're Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., in which case you ignore the question.

And where is Melania, immigrant wife of the president, on all this? Oh, that's right. She's white.

Remember when Hillary Clinton was pilloried for saying half of Trump's supporters were "deplorables?" She underestimated, clearly believing some Republican politicians would stand up when Trump cut open his white supremacy vein. Tough to do without a spine.

This makes the 2020 presidential race easy to digest, though. Forget tax cuts, regulations, judges, abortion or any of the other issues Republicans have convinced themselves are worth trashing 243 years of democratic norms for. This is going to be about race, 100 percent. And it's going to be ugly.

Many fooled themselves into believing Trump's 2016 victory, aside from whatever help he got from Russian election interference, was about Clinton's emails or draining the swamp or Making American Great Again. It never was. Trump won, aside from whatever help he got from Russian election interference, because he demonized people of color and vowed to build a wall to keep out brown immigrants.

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"Economic anxiety," the pundits said.

"Racism," common sense said.

Common sense won out.

The next presidential election will be a moment of truth for America. On one side will be a full-throated racist who has tossed aside any subtlety or dog whistles. If the nation chooses him, which is entirely possible, it will choose the redneck racist in the parking lot.

After four years of reasonable people saying, "This isn't who we are" there will be no choice but to accept the obvious.

Donald Trump will be exactly who we are.

Related Topics: ILHAN OMAR
Mike McFeely is a columnist for The Forum of Fargo-Moorhead. He began working for The Forum in the 1980s while he was a student studying journalism at Minnesota State University Moorhead. He's been with The Forum full time since 1990, minus a six-year hiatus when he hosted a local radio talk-show.
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