Donald Trump was extremely careful Friday not to offend his “very fine” white nationalist base around the globe after one of them slaughtered 49 people in two New Zealand mosques. Trump sent New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern his “warmest sympathy and best wishes,” lamented that innocent people “senselessly died,” and mourned the “horrific events.”
This all might seem normal except that the white nationalist responsible for the massacre had invoked Trump by name as “a symbol of white identity and common purpose” and left behind a manifesto riddled with racial slurs, like calling immigration “white genocide.” Still, Trump found no harsh words for the murderous ideology behind the New Zealand tragedy. Given the chance to denounce white nationalism at a Friday press conference, Trump shrugged it off as a few bad apples.
Asked by a reporter if white nationalism is a growing threat, @POTUS replies, ”not really,” suggesting it’s just a small group of people.
— Steve Herman (@W7VOA) March 15, 2019
That’s how badly Trump needs attention and praise: He can’t even bring himself to speak out against a hateful doctrine that leads someone to unleash an unthinkable spree that took the lives of 49 innocent people practicing their religion.
The strongest statement against the massacre the White House could muster is one we can’t even verify happened: a top White House aide claiming Trump called the shooting an “act of terror.” In contrast, New Zealand Prime Minister Ardern was very clear, calling the attack the work of an “extremist right-wing violent terrorist.”
Trump’s reaction to the white nationalist-inspired slaughter has been notably different than all the tirades he’s launched in the wake of attacks perpetrated by Muslims. Below is a sampling.
The threat from radical Islamic terrorism is very real, just look at what is happening in Europe and the Middle-East. Courts must act fast!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 7, 2017
Another very bad terror attack in France. We are going to strengthen our borders even more. Chuck and Nancy must give us the votes to get additional Border Security!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 12, 2018
Another terrorist attack in London…These animals are crazy and must be dealt with through toughness and strength!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 14, 2018
.@Theresa_May, don’t focus on me, focus on the destructive Radical Islamic Terrorism that is taking place within the United Kingdom. We are doing just fine!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 30, 2017
NYC terrorist was happy as he asked to hang ISIS flag in his hospital room. He killed 8 people, badly injured 12. SHOULD GET DEATH PENALTY!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 2, 2017
Terrorists are engaged in a war against civilization- it is up to all who value life to confront & defeat this evil➡️https://t.co/haeuvCIF6I
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 26, 2017
— Ian Reifowitz (@IanReifowitz) March 15, 2019