When Jemele Hill recently caught hell for calling President Donald Trump a “White supremacist,” critics needed to look no further than his commentary about people of color during his nearly 10 tumultuous months in office, his stump speeches, and as a real estate titan. Here are some of his greatest hits:
1. Africa: While speaking with African leaders at a United Nations working lunch in September, Trump tried to praise them for their economic progress, saying, “Africa has tremendous business potential. I’ve so many friends going to your countries, trying to get rich.” Given White America’s history of the trans-Atlantic slave trade and colonialism, the remark could only come from the perspective of a White supremacist.
2. “Nambia”: While praising Africa for its ability to make his friends rich, Trump referred to a nonexistent country, “Nambia”, during the same United Nations speech. The incident underscores a dismissive attitude about a continent whose only value to him is that its topography can make his friends rich. In remarks later posted by the office of the press secretary on the White House website, the transcript clearly reads “Namibia.” It was not the first time he mispronounced the name of an African country. The phonetically challenged leader mispronounced Tanzania in 2016.
3. Charlottesville, Virginia, violence: Who could forget how he claimed in August that “both sides” shared the blame for a White supremacist’s attack on counter-protesters, where Heather Heyer died and others were injured.
4. Colin Kaepernick: One need look no further than the president himself when trying to figure out why the free agent remains unsigned. At a rally in March in Louisville, Kentucky, he personally took credit for the fact the quarterback has not been signed by a team, saying NFL owners “don’t want to get a nasty tweet from Donald Trump.”
5. “What do you have to lose?” In his quest to win Black voters on the campaign trail in August 2016, Trump infamously asked, “What do you have to lose?” The answer is a lot, according to longtime Democratic California Congresswoman Maxine Waters, who issued a series of tweets recently about the matter:
6. “Look at my African American”: While struggling to prove he had Black supporters other than retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson and then-Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke on the campaign trail in summer of 2016, Trump pointed to a supporter in a crowd, saying, “Oh, look at my African-American over here. Look at him.Are you the greatest?”
7. White supremacists: Trump drew criticism in February 2016 for refusing to condemn David Duke during a heated interview with CNN anchor Jake Tapper.
8. Central Park 5: In 1989, Trump spent $85,000 on a full-page ad in New York City’s four daily newspapers two weeks after five teens were arrested for allegedly raping a woman in Central Park, saying they should face the death penalty for their crimes.
9. Trump doubles-down on Central Park 5: On the campaign trail, Trump continued to claim that the Central Park Five was guilty. Nearly 16 years after their convictions were vacated based on DNA evidence, he said in an October 2016 interview, “They admitted they were guilty. The police doing the original investigation say they were guilty. The fact that the case was settled with so much evidence against them is outrageous.”
Stay tuned for more, at least until 2020—if not sooner.