You don’t have to be a private eye to find ample evidence that Donald Trump deserves the racist label. He learned at the knee of his father Fred Trump, whose real estate companies consistently discriminated against potential black tenants. He burst on the political scene by questioning Barack Obama’s birthplace of origin. He led his campaign rally crowds in cheers of “Build the Wall!” which translates quite smoothly to “Keep out the brown people!” His campaign theme of “Make America Great Again” could be read as “Make America White Again,” given the homogeneous nature of his rabid crowds. In speeches when he referenced African-American football players kneeling during the National Anthem he would shout, “Get that b———- off the field” and call them “deportable.”

He has described Confederate generals as “some of our greatest heroes,” never mind that they were, in truth, fighting against the Union in order to maintain the enslavement of African Americans. He referred to people “on both sides” of the Charlottesville rally as “good people.” He retweeted a video of a man at the Villages shouting, “White Power. He referred to protestors at Black Lives Matter rallies as “thugs.” His cultish fans get the message: Many of them say that they like Trump because, “He’s not afraid to say what we think.” David Duke, former KKK grand wizard, is a devoted Trumper, “We voted for Donald Trump because he said he wanted to take our country back.”

Whether or not Trump is a racist to the core — he most likely is — he has played the racist schtick to the max, using dog whistles or, lately, bullhorns to send his hateful message. White House aide Steven Miller, who cited white nationalist web sites when he was a Senate aide, has helped shape policy. Consider the separation of children from their parents at the southern border. Or the efforts to overturn DACA (the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals). The White House recently tried to force international college students to return to their home countries if they were only taking remote courses while in the United States. Happily, law suits launched by Harvard, MIT and other colleges and universities repelled this mean-spirited effort.

Trump chided NASCAR for declaring that Confederate Flags should not be shown at NASCAR events. He even said that Bubba Wallace, NASCAR’s only black driver, should apologize for speaking out against the flag, because ratings would go down. And, as noted in an earlier column, Trump awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom to Rush Limbaugh, a man who’s made a career out of spewing racist and sexist bile on his syndicated radio show.

Trump’s statements and policies over the last three years have been driven by his desire to undo everything accomplished by President Barack Obama. His quest to overturn the Affordable Care Act is but one example. In “Moby Dick,” Captain Ahab was obsessed with hunting down the great white whale. Trump is obsessed with destroying the legacy of the nation’s first African-American President. One astute observer of the political scene has noted that the hatred of Obama is racist, while the hatred of Trump is patriotic.

But the times, Mr. President, are changing. Sixty percent of Americans believe in the ideas expressed in the Black Lives Matter movement. The majority of Americans, horrified by the George Floyd murder, have come to acknowledge that African-Americans are treated differently by the police and the judicial system. NASCAR officials agreed to ban Confederate flags. The NFL apologized for its treatment of Colin Kaepernick when he knelt during the playing of the National Anthem. The Washington Redskins have announced that the team’s name will be changed. Military leaders are pushing to change the names of military bases named after Confederate generals. Trump, of course, has decried all of these developments, all efforts to convey the sentiment: Black Lives Matter. He rode to the presidency on the undercurrent of white resentment, and he has no intention of changing course.

Your message is wrong, Mr. President, and your time is up. The angry old white dinosaur is nearing extinction. Keep on with your racist rallies, if you must, but America is ready to move on.

David Treadwell, a Brunswick writer, welcomes commentary and suggestions for future “Just a Little Old” columns. [email protected]

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