Link to report, click title; super reports on their sidebar:
"Not good enough." "Insufficient." "Too little, too late."
—Vanita Gupta, The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights
It took Trump two days and "overwhelming pressure" to denounce white supremacists explicitly. In his first comments regarding the neo-Nazi rally in Virginia—an event also known as "Unite the Right"—the president suggested the violence came from "many sides." These remarks were met with applause by neo-Nazis on the Internet, who celebrated Trump's refusal to condemn them by name. Lawmakers from both sides of the aisle were quick to label the comments as evasive and unacceptable.
Vanita Gupta, president and CEO of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, expressed a sentiment many echoed following the president's televised speech on Monday, saying: "It is a sad state of affairs when it's a news story that the president of the United States condemns racism and white supremacy."
Two days after the fact, President Trump has at long last, directly and personally, condemned the white supremacist rallies and violent extremism that occurred in Charlottesville. While today's delayed words are welcome, they should have been spoken on Saturday. This unconscionable delay has undermined his moral credibility as our nation's leader.Others heaped on the criticism, arguing that it should not have taken days of external pressure and shoves from his own cabinet to convince Trump to speak out against white supremacy.
Today's words must be followed by action. He must stop advancing policies that seek to divide this nation. Supporters of white supremacists, violent extremism, racial bigotry, and neo-Nazis should not serve in the White House or at any level of government. The president should fire Stephen Bannon and Sebastian Gorka or any staffers who stoke hate and division.
The President of the United States should not have to be publicly shamed into condemning neo-Nazis and white supremacists.— Rep. Dan Kildee (@RepDanKildee) August 14, 2017
Donald Trump brings to the task of denouncing racism all the passion of a man ordering a cheeseburger through a drive-through microphone— Bill McKibben (@billmckibben) August 14, 2017
Following the president's remarks on Monday, reports emerged that Trump is "seriously considering a pardon" for former Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who was found guilty of criminal contempt of court last month after failing to adhere to a court order demanding that he stop racially profiling Latinos.Saying "racism is evil" is literally the least someone can do, and yet it took "overwhelming pressure" to get Trump to do it. pic.twitter.com/Vx9vkwNpT7— Jacob Remes (@jacremes) August 14, 2017
This is how much he hates racism. https://t.co/piMFHsJnek— Judd Legum (@JuddLegum) August 14, 2017
Arpaio's career was built on racist abuse against people of color. Pardoning him would embolden white supremacists. https://t.co/KYiNvujUzx— Our Revolution (@OurRevolution) August 14, 2017
Best pre-Trump BS speech coverage with most likely more on the way:
Democracy Now !
Ya'll remember Greg Palast from the Black Box/Florida election and the Iraq War days, right? Check this out from Truthout and don't miss their daily reports and headlines.
Monday, August 14, 2017
By Greg Palast, Truthout | News Analysis
Don't look away. Four white neo-Nazis are beating a Black man, crawling on the ground, with their metal poles and a yellow hunk of lumber. The beating continues -- there's blood on the pavement.
The young victim is Deandre Harris, a special education teacher in Charlottesville, Virginia. On GoFundMe, which Harris is using to raise money to pay for his emergency medical care following the beating, he recounts his own experience of being attacked following his participation in the counter-protest against the "Unite the Right" march of white supremacists:
I arrived at Emancipation Park around 11 AM as a counter-protester to voice my opinion on racial tensions and to literally stand up for what I believe in. I was only there for a few minutes before I was hit with water bottles, maced with pepper spray, and had [derogatory] slurs hurled at me. Just forty-five minutes in to the rally our Gov. Terry McAuliffe declared a state of emergency to aid state response to violence. About fifteen minutes or so after that I was brutally attacked by white supremacists in the parking garage right beside the Charlottesville Police Station. I was chased and beat with metal poles. I was knocked unconscious repeatedly. Every time I went to stand up I was knocked back down.... If it was not for my friends that I came with I would have been beaten to a pulp. No law enforcement stepped in to help me. Once I was dragged off to some near by steps I was taken to the designated area for injured protesters & counter-protesters. My injuries were too extensive to be treated at the scene so I was taken to the ER at Martha Jefferson Hospital.The medical care that Harris received included eight staples in his head and care for a concussion, ulnar fracture, laceration across his right eyebrow, abrasions on his knees and elbows, and a chipped tooth.
During the attack on Harris, Zach D. Roberts, an investigative photojournalist who has been with the Palast investigations team for 11 years, continued to shoot -- even as a white militant raised a 9mm pistol to his face.
One photo has gone viral internationally. These others we bring you here because they must be seen. Including, for the first time, the gunman.
Welcome to Charlottesville, USA. Trump's America, month eight.
According to President Trump, the violence was perpetrated on "many sides." The only sides I see are the beaters and the beaten; Harris on the ground with the "alt-right" storm troopers with weapons.
Here is Roberts' report. First, he saw Harris walking down the street with friends, trading taunts with the white-supremacist demonstrators.
Harris' jibes were hardly fighting words. "Go home! Leave town!" That's when fists flew and Harris was slammed by one of the white guys straight into a parking lot barrier so hard the yellow wooden arm broke.
Now Harris fell to the ground, "alone, surrounded by all these white guys -- and they started beating him with the poles that almost all the white supremacists were carrying."
In the photos, you can see one white guy picking up the yellow barrier arm and raising the three-foot hunk of lumber high over his head before he brings it down on Harris -- who is being kicked by another white man's boots, while two others bring down metal rods on the prone man.
And no, that's not a cop on the left in the photo -- that's a neo-Nazi in full riot gear. (Where were the cops? Good question: this parking garage is next to the Charlottesville Police Station.)
Harris was saved when some courageous young Black men -- with no weapons -- ran into the underground garage and the white posse scattered.
Except for one. The gunman.
He pulled out what looks to be a 9mm pistol, maybe a Glock semi-automatic, and positioned himself to fire on the rescue squad. But then he heard the click of Roberts' camera, just three feet away, and realized he was getting photographed.
Simultaneously, Roberts realized he'd left his bullet-proof vest in his car. In this strange stand-off, the camera proved mightier than the bullet: The would-be shooter figured it would be wiser to quickly conceal the weapon and flee.
Harris "ran into the garage's staircase and collapsed bleeding profusely from the face," Roberts said. Roberts waited with him and his protectors for half an hour but no ambulance arrived for Harris or the other people who were injured.
In an interview published Sunday on The Root, Harris said that he is in the process of pressing charges and that his mother is working with Roberts to identify the racists who attacked him.
"How do you expect the KKK to come to your city to protest, and them not be violent?" Harris told The Root.
The white supremacist attacks on Harris and others this weekend were not isolated incidents. They are connected to a host of ongoing structural attacks against Black people in Virginia.
Roberts and I have been working these past four years on a story of how Trump's henchman, one Kris Kobach, now head of Trump's so-called, "Election Integrity Commission," conceived of a secretive program to remove hundreds of thousands of Black Americans from the voter rolls.
Virginia removed an astonishing 41,637 voters based on Kobach's accusation that they could have voted twice. Not one of the accused was arrested -- but, you won't be surprised to hear, the list of the "scrubbed" was filled with African-American names.
And Virginia is removing tens of thousands more with this Jim Crow tactic -- despite a nominally Democratic Governor, Terry McAuliffe.
Virginia refused us their "scrub" lists. But Roberts obtained a copy -- half a million names in all -- much to the state's dismay. And those lists are every bit as obscenely racist and, in the long run, far more wounding, than the iron rods of the neo-Nazis.
We will be going back to Virginia on September 9 to the capital, Richmond, to fight against this racist disenfranchisement.
Meanwhile, Harris and others who bore the brunt of the white supremacist violence in Charlottesville this weekend are continuing to spread their story and challenging the US public not to look away.
"We will not let this fade & disappear," Harris wrote on his GoFundMe page. "People are carrying real hate in their hearts for the Black Community and I refuse to just let it happen."
Greg Palast is the director, and Zach D. Roberts the associate producer, of The Best Democracy Money Can Buy, a film about racial vote suppression and the billionaires behind it.