On Tuesday, September 29th, during the first nationally televised debate in his bid for re-election, moderator Chris Wallace gave President Donald Trump an opportunity to clarify his stance on the white supremacists and hate groups who seem to support his campaign. When asked directly if he was willing to condemn white supremacists and militia groups, the President stopped short of actually saying anything condemning. He began his statement by saying: "Sure, I'm prepared to do that," then followed up with, “Proud Boys, stand back and stand by,” then diverted attention and blame toward his leftist opposition. This lack of condemnation prompted the Proud Boys to add his words to their logo as a sign of validation.
Considering that the Proud Boys have been labeled a hate group, and their members have been known to use white nationalist, anti-Muslim and misogynistic memes and language, the President's unwillingness to outright condemn them coupled with his desire to divert the conversation away from groups such as these is quite troubling. Add to that the grisly fact that the FBI raised the threat of racially motivated violence to “national threat priority” this year, as well as FBI Director Christopher Wray testifying that most of this violence comes from “racially motivated violent extremism,” the President's lack of a hard-line stance against these individuals is quite disturbing.
To Learn More Read: From Debate Stage, Trump Declines To Denounce White Supremacy and here: Trump To Proud Boys: ‘Stand Back And Stand By’.