Appearing on MSNBC on Saturday morning, Gregory Cheadle, a former supporter of Donald Trump who was once pointed out at a a rally by the president as "my African-American," explained why he has turned on Trump, citing multiple issues he could no longer avoid.
"What led to you change your mind?" asked host David Gura. "What was it about these recent incidents that made you change your position?"
"A series of events," said Cheadle. "If there was one more than another, it would be the Kaepernick taking a knee incident, where he called Kaepernick and others an SOB. He wouldn't call Putin or the North Korean leader an SOB. That was something I could not tolerate.
Cheadle said that he still didn't believe the president was a racist personally, but added, "I am more disappointed we are at this level today. We are in 2019 and race is a major issue with the president to be grandstanding the way he is, it is disconcerting and disappointing."
"I don't think the president is going to do anything to make a change," he continued. "I think we the people have to come together and make a change. We have to get legislation and policies in order that will allow for a decrease in the wage gap ... when you look at the sentencing of blacks, there is a great disparity. As it is right now, that spells a death note for black people in the criminal justice system."
"There was a moment this week a reporter asked him about it," said Gura. "He professed not to know you. In the face of being accused of racist, he goes to unemployment numbers, the state of the economy and how blacks and African-Americans are doing today. Your reaction to that?"
"The president knows who I am," said Cheadle. "I corresponded with him. He sent me a letter. The whole thing with the way the president deals with reality is of concern. The black unemployment numbers — that is a perversion of data. We have more blacks unemployed today than ever. When you look at the incarceration of black folk, there are millions of black folk right now who cannot get a job or get benefits because of their record, whether it be drugs or whatever, because they were locked up. They can't have access. We have millions of black men and women who cannot get a job."