By Lauren Victoria Burke, NNPA Newswire Contributor
On the night of September 29, President Donald Trump and Democratic challenger Joe Biden debated in Ohio at Case-Western University.
The debate is likely to go down as one of the lowest moments in U.S. electoral history. President Trump appeared to be trying to talk over the former Vice President in an attempt to have his message heard. But the strategy won Trump inordinate attention from debate moderator Chris Wallace. At several points Trump appeared unable to maintain enough self-control for Biden to finish an answer.
About halfway through the debate, Trump provided yet another moment that will likely be hard to forget in the lead up to Election Day. Moderator Chris Wallace, along with Biden, asked Trump if he would denounce white supremacy. Trump didn’t. Instead he turned the moment into a redirect to attack protesters on the left.
The moment wasn’t the first time Donald Trump has refused to condemn white supremacists’ groups. He avoided criticism of them after a group of Neo-Nazis rioted in the streets of Charlottesville, Va. in August of 2017. He also avoided criticism of former KKK Grand Wizard David Duke when pressed during the 2016 campaign on CNN by Jake Tapper.
“President Trump was asked to condemn white supremacy. He refused. He told white supremacists to ‘stand back and stand by,’ President Trump is a national disgrace, and Americans will not stand for it,” remarked Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) on twitter.
“What the Proud Boys are saying right now. And they’re not referring to harming property, but to harming people. Human lives. White supremacy is not pro-life. White supremacists only want “Law and Order” when it sustains and deters challenges to white supremacy,” wrote Bernice King, daughter of civil rights legend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
She was referring to messages all over social media featuring members of the Proud Boys celebrating Trump’s words during the debate.
“For those who hadn’t been listening for the past 4 years, Trump just told you that he ain’t leaving and that he is a white supremacist. If that doesn’t get every American who is not white into overdrive to toss his ass – we may actually deserve what happens next,” wrote director Ava DuVernay after the debate ended.
Lauren Victoria Burke is an independent journalist for NNPA and the host of the podcast BURKEFILE. She is also a political strategist as Principal of Win Digital Media LLC. She may be contacted at LBurke007@gmail.com and on twitter at @LVBurke