During a virtual town hall this week, Joe Biden drew some attention when he called Donald Trump America’s first racist president. It’s probably more accurate to say that Donald Trump is the first president to launch a political career almost exclusively on racism – since he first found a voice on Twitter and as a guest on Fox News by questioning President Obama’s birthplace.
Even before he was in politics, however, he bought newspaper ads demanding that five innocent black men in Manhattan be put to death, long after they were exonerated, a claim he still stands by, and he started his career in real estate being sued for refusing to rent to black people.
It wasn’t quite clear why he made the comment at first, although he went on to address every despicable racist thing the administration has done from the moment they moved into Washington, from the Muslim ban on day one (that Biden has vowed to repeal on his first day as president), to his insistence on blaming China for COVID-19.
A few hours later, however, at Donald Trump’s embarrassment of a press conference, Trump was asked about Biden’s comments, leading him to once again make a fool of himself by claiming to have “done more for black Americans than anybody with the possible exception of Abraham Lincoln. Nobody has even been close.” The first time Trump made this outlandish claim it was strange even for him, but could’ve been seen as a one-time gaffe.
Now it’s clear to everyone that he seriously believes this insane delusion, and blurting it out at a time when the country is looking for leadership is probably the worst possible time to do it, making him look even more ineffective and weak than what he’s already shown us. Donald Trump has spent the last few months of the campaign boasting about how he can outwit Joe Biden, but Biden’s managed to embarrass Trump while barely even trying.
James Sullivan is the assistant editor of Brain World Magazine and an advocate of science-based policy making