Donald Trump, America’s Racial Sheriff

[ Originally published on this site as post ]

President Donald Trump’s attacks on prominent African-Americans just before the Thanksgiving break—in which he dubbed LaVar Ball, father of one of the three UCLA basketball players who had been released from custody in China, an “ungrateful fool”—prodded the mainstream news media to once again consider a long-percolating question: Why is he so obsessed with using famous African-Americans as political foils? Trump, of course, is an aggressive combatant against enemies of all sorts, but there is something peculiar about the way he goes after African-Americans: a greater intensity of grievance, a more visceral call for punishment. On the day he attacked Ball, he also retweeted a comment from a supporter who had lamented, “The ungratefulness is something I’ve never seen before.”