Trump’s racist comments yesterday in which he referred to Haiti, El Salvador, and all of Africa as “shitholes” is just the latest bit of overt bigotry from our hateful president. As usual, the Republicans are racing to reject the remarks while embracing the man.
The GOP won’t endorse the overt racism, but they also refuse to take action against Trump himself. They’re content to let an avowed white supremacist remain in the Oval Office as long as it means they’ll be able to get more of their regressive legislation rubber stamped in the future. Until they back up their words with actions they’re complicit in everything Trump does.
Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-WI) has seized upon the “shitholes” scandal to demonstrate once again that he is a marvel of modern science who somehow manages to exist without any trace of a spine. So cowardly is this man who once thought he could be Vice President that, when confronted with blatant racist sentiments, the most damning assessment he can muster is that they’re “unfortunate” and “unhelpful.”
This craven, empty suit has supported Trump’s agenda every step of the way and enabled the president in his systematic dismantling of American institutions and its global reputation. Now, given the chance to finally stand up to the president without fear of backlash, he chooses to once again shirk his duties as not only an elected representative but as a basic, decent, human being.
When asked directly about Trump’s comments Ryan said the first thing he thought about when he heard of the scandal was his own family. That is to say, when told that the President of the United States had insulted people of color, Ryan’s first thought was of his white family.
He pivoted to discuss the bad treatment Irish immigrants received when they first arrived in this country. It’s true that the Irish were mistreated as second-class citizens, but it’s also true that the abuse they suffered has nothing to do with Trump’s attacks on Black and Hispanic peoples. It’s a cheap distraction ploy on the part of Ryan.
— CNN (@CNN) January 12, 2018
Ryan is right that diversity and immigration are something to celebrate and represent some of our nation’s core strengths. The problem is that he lacks the courage to disavow Trump for denying and degrading those basic American tenants. It’s not enough to praise immigrants, he has a moral obligation to defend them from the attacks of bigots like Trump.