“I have an advantage of knowing the president very well,” Ben Carson, Housing and Urban Development secretary in the Trump administration, told Fox News on Wednesday. “He’s not a racist and his comments are not racist, but he loves the country very much and, you know, he has a feeling that those who represent the country should love it as well.”
Carson, a prominent neurosurgeon before he entered politics by running for president in 2016, and an African-American, was responding to the charges by several Democrats and their allies in the liberal media that President Donald Trump’s recent tweet — widely taken as referring to members of the socialist “Squad” in Congress, particularly Representative Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) — was “racist.”
A careful reading, however, of Trump’s complete tweet confirms Carson’s contention that Trump had not said anything racist:
So interesting to see ‘Progressive” Democrat Congresswomen, who originally came from countries whose governments are a complete and total catastrophe, the worst, most corrupt and inept anywhere in the world (if they even have a functioning government at all), now loudly and viciously telling the people of the United States, the greatest and most powerful Nation on earth, how our government is to be run. Why don’t they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came. Then come back and show us how it is done. These places need your help badly, you can’t leave fast enough. I’m sure that Nancy Pelosi would be very happy to quickly work out free travel arrangements!
Carson chose not to address the specifics of Trump’s remarks, choosing instead to highlight what he sees as the positives of the president, as it relates to minorities. He noted that Trump’s policies have helped lift minorities out of poverty through expanded job opportunities, adding that a racist would have no interest in helping minorities.
Specifically, Carson called attention to the “opportunity zones” program, designed to enable investors to take advantage of tax breaks to help those in lower-income areas.
Carson directly challenged the view that minorities are all victims by offering the example of his own rise out of poverty. “I have to look at my own situation, born and growing up in dire poverty with a lot of negativity around me, but also, recognizing that I lived in a place where, you know, through the help of my mother, who helped me to realize that I wasn’t a victim, that I had access to all kinds of things.”
Today, he is a member of a presidential Cabinet, after a successful career as a neurosurgeon, he said. “These are things that we want people to recognize in our nation and that’s why we want to create opportunities for them.”
While Carson’s defense of Trump from a charge of racism should be widely reported, conservatives instinctively know that it will not be. Instead, the mantra that Trump is a racist will continue to be the narrative found in most of the mainstream media. Carson’s remarks do not fit the game plan of the Left, who have used the “race card” shamelessly for political purposes ever since the 1960s.
Trump is not the first politician to be accused of racism as a way to advance various leftist causes. It began with isolated charges against President Richard Nixon, but it accelerated against President Ronald Reagan, with insinuations that his use of the infamous “Welfare Queen” — a woman who bilked the system for huge amounts of money — was discriminatory. “In Chicago, they found a woman who holds the record,” Reagan said at a campaign rally in January 1976, during his challenge of President Gerald Ford for the Republican nomination, “She used 80 names, 30 addresses, 15 telephone numbers to collect food stamps, Social Security, veterans’ benefits for four nonexistent deceased veteran husbands, as well as welfare. Her tax-free cash income alone has been running $150,000 a year.”
Because the woman, Linda Taylor, was black, the Left’s defense was that Reagan’s use of her example was racist. Calling Reagan a racist was absurd. When he was in college in Illinois, a hotel would not allow a black member of his football team to spend the night, so Reagan took him several miles away to his family home. But the charge of racism was made, anyway, all in an effort to generate votes against Reagan by shamelessly tarring him as a “racist.”
Even less-than-conservative Republicans are smeared with the racism tag. President George H.W. Bush referred to his Hispanic grandchildren as “the little brown ones,” so he was a racist. When his son George W. Bush was governor of Texas, he was held responsible because a man was murdered in the state by some actual racists. Who can forget the notorious Democratic Party campaign ads that warned voters that if they voted Republican, black churches would burn?
Opposition to Barack Obama was chalked up to racism. Even white Democrats who don’t toe the liberal line on every point — such as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and former Vice President Joe Biden — are dismissed as racists.
Actual bigotry, when practiced by those on the Left, is either ignored, justified, or down-played. For example, Representative Ilhan Omar, thought to be the principal target of Trump’s tweet, has made several comments very derogatory toward Jewish people. A Somalian immigrant, Omar even trivialized the 9/11 attacks as “some people did some things.”
Another House member of the far-Left “Squad” — four radical female members of Congress — Rashida Tlaib, a Michigan Democrat, began her tenure in the House calling for Trump’s impeachment. Shortly after being sworn in, she screamed, “We’re gonna go in there we’re going to impeach the mother ****er,” in a reference to President Trump.
And they accuse Trump of incivility.
The lesson in all of this is that race-card politics should have been roundly condemned from the beginning. Now, with the support of most of the media, academia, and the popular culture, and even some weak-kneed Republicans, Trump is falsely accused of racism on almost a daily basis. Like the watchdog who barks all the time, at some point, it becomes just noise. But on the outside chance that more black Americans will leave the Democratic Party and vote for Trump and other Republicans, the Left can be expected to play the race card to prevent it.
It is not that the Left does not believe blacks and other minorities, and women, can never be criticized. They are quick to smear conservative minorities and women — just witness the caustic treatment they have given such individuals as Clarence Thomas, Sarah Sanders, Ben Carson, and Sarah Palin.
One might recall how Thomas has been called “an Uncle Tom,” and Sarah Palin has been referred to as “not a real woman,” owing to their more conservative viewpoints. Such vitriolic statements represent real racism and real sexism.
Photo: AP Images