President Donald Trump signed a proclamation for Martin Luther King Jr. Day Friday. The act came on the heels of the news that Trump told a room full of lawmakers and their staff that he doesn’t want people from “sh*thole countries” coming to the United States.
When the news broke about the statement Thursday, Lemon along with others, lined up to denounce the racism and poor behavior.
“The president has not apologized,” Lemon said in his opening commentary. He noted that he wasn’t all that surprised by the lack of remorse. Trump has tried to deny the words, but according to Lemon, there’s no denying it.
“Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) confirms it, and Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), who was at the meeting, also said he stood up after those comments,” Lemon continued. “We all know the president meant what he said. sources telling CNN the president called friends to do a victory lap. So, it’s for some just as painful that today the president sought to honor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.”
He played a tape of Trump seemingly reading a Wikipedia article on King as he announced the day commemorating the civil rights leader’s acts of service and strive for equality.
“So, that’s what he said today in front of the cameras, but remember behind the cameras this is what the president just said yesterday,” Lemon said reading the remarks again. “Kind of makes your skin crawl to hear him talk about Dr. Martin Luther King’s values. And more than that, it whitewashes Dr. King.”
According to Lemon, King’s memory is just as important and as powerful today as it was 50 years ago. “And it’s not about some warm and fuzzy kumbaya America,” he said before quoting Dr. King’s words from 1967.
“Loose and easy language about equality, resonant resolutions about brotherhood fall pleasantly on the ear, but for the Negro, there is a credibility gap he cannot overlook. He remembers that with each modest advance the white population promptly raises the argument that the Negro has come far enough. Each step forward accents an ever-present tendency to backlash.”
“Donald Trump has proved over and over again his words and actions are a step backwards from the ideals of America,” Lemon continued. “A step backwards from the real ideals and word of Martin Luther King.”
He again quoted King saying, “The fact is capitalism was built on the exploitation and suffering of blag slaves and continues to thrive on the exploitation of the poor — both black and white, both here and abroad.”
Contrast that with President Trump asking why we can’t have more immigrants from places like Norway,” Lemon closed. “Forgetting that it was people from sh*thole countries who built this country. Who built the White House. Nothing that Donald Trump says can change that.”