New York Times columnist Charles Blow was invited onto CNN’s “New Day” on Thursday morning to address a Wednesday tweet from Donald Trump about undocumented immigrants that included the curious phrase “breeding concept,” that has resulted in accusations of over presidential racism.
Sitting down with CNN host Chris Cuomo, Blow was asked about Trump’s tweet that read: “There is a Revolution going on in California. Soooo many Sanctuary areas want OUT of this ridiculous, crime infested & breeding concept. Jerry Brown is trying to back out of the National Guard at the Border, but the people of the State are not happy. Want Security & Safety NOW!”
“Words matter and once again, President Trump is under fire for a tweet on immigration in so-called sanctuary cities,” host Cuomo began. “Now, the facts of this: there’s a lot of exaggeration, however the phrase, ‘breeding concept’, has some outraged. Did the president cross a line? What’s the simple answer?”
“Breed is a concept you normally apply to animals and some plants and breeding is the reproduction of those animals and plants so what his intent is, who can ever know” Blow began. “The effect is it’s dehumanizing of people, the otherizing of people and the animalizing of people and once you take a human being and reduce the humanity in that person where your fellow citizens no longer see that person as fully human, it opens the gate for you to do all manner of things to those people.”
“That is a very historical concept, that’s an ancient concept,” Blow continued. “We’ve seen that in recent history where during the crack epidemic, for instance, we had this crack science that labeled some people who were users and some people who were sellers as super predators. It dehumanized then to the point where you were allowed to then promote draconian policies because all of a sudden they weren’t human like you and I.”
“Once you define somebody as less than, then there’s an expectation they’ll be treated as less than,” host Cuomo agreed.
“Not than less than human, less than another in importance in society. Fully less than human and that’s a real thing,” Blow added. “Maybe if it was someone else, you might be able to make an argument but not with this particular person. This president has a history of problematic racial language and actions and therefore, you don’t really give him the benefit of the doubt.”
Asked if Trump’s racist dog-whistle “was serving a purpose,” now that Trump is losing the backing go GOP lawmakers,” Blow said it odd in its timing.
“Particularly for somebody that already has a re-election committee. A lot of things play into it, his problem around race plays in to it and his legal problems play in to it,” Blow explained.
Watch the video blow via CNN: