“Trump is a racist!” was the mocking cry from an off-stage Larry David when Trump recently hosted Saturday Night Live. The David bit was designed to make fun not of Trump but Trump’s critics. In this case a left-wing group calling itself deportracism.com which, without the slightest sense of irony, put together a thoroughly racist ad having children spewing obscenities as they proclaimed their allegiance not to America and its ideals but rather to their race. A chilling reminder of all those fresh-faced young Germans of long ago pledging allegiance to their Aryan race.
All of this is already old news. But there is a much older “old news” story about Trump that has now resurfaced — a story that paints a highly accurate portrait of the real Donald Trump — the guy who has no time for racism and anti-Semitism and stood up in public to fight both.
The story, linked by a group calling itself Zionists for Trump, was published in the Wall Street Journal — in 1997. It revolves around Trump’s purchase and operation of the famous Mar-a-Largo estate, built in the 1920s by Post Cereal heiress Marjorie Merriweather Post. Trump had recently purchased the sprawling, seaside estate and turned it into a club. This being located in upscale Palm Beach, Florida, there were other prestigious clubs in the area, clubs that catered to the old order of upper crust Palm Beach society. The problem? Quietly, these other clubs had long barred Jews and African Americans — which is to say they practiced a quiet but steely racism.
The Zionists for Trump headline:
How Trump Fought Antisemitism and Racism in Palm Beach Two Decades AgoThe WSJ story that is linked focuses on the battles Trump faced as a new arrival to Palm Beach, including his new competition with the social clubs of the old order. The story, which quotes Abe Foxman, the longtime head of the Anti-Defamation League, says, in part, the following:
In other words? In other words, long before he was running for president, there was Donald Trump battling racism and anti-Semitism in Palm Beach society. Using every tool at his disposal.Mr. Trump also has resorted to the courts to secure his foothold here, and many residents wince at the attention his legal battles with the town have drawn — to the town in general, and to the admission practices at some of Palm Beach’s older clubs in particular.
…The culture clash began to approach a climax last fall, when Mr. Trump’s lawyer sent members of the town council a copy of the film “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner,” a film that deals with upper-class racism. Mr. Trump then approached the town council about lifting the restrictions that had been placed on the club. He also asked some council members not to vote on the request because their membership in other clubs created a conflict of interest.
Last December, after the council refused to lift the restrictions, Mr. Trump filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Palm Beach, alleging that the town was discriminating against Mar-a-Lago, in part because it is open to Jews and African-Americans. The suit seeks $100 million in damages.
… Mr. Foxman seems pleased that Mr. Trump has elevated the issue of discriminatory policies at social clubs. “He put the light on Palm Beach,” Mr. Foxman says. “Not on the beauty and the glitter, but on its seamier side of discrimination. It has an impact.”
In recent weeks, Mr. Foxman says, the league has received calls from Jewish residents telling of how Palm Beach clubs are changing. Locals concur that in the past year, organizations such as the Bath and Tennis Club have begun to admit Jewish patrons. The Palm Beach Civic Association, which for many years was believed to engage in discriminatory behavior, this month named a Jewish resident as its chief officer.
The film he chose to send the Palm Beach town council was no accident. Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner was released in 1967 and starred film legends Spencer Tracy, Katharine Hepburn, and Sidney Poitier. The Oscar-winning story revolved around a liberal, upper-class older couple who are stunned and discomfited when their daughter, played by Katharine Houghton, brings her new fiancé — Poitier — home to dinner and an introduction to her white parents. As liberals, her parents were staunch supporters of racial equality and had raised their daughter accordingly. Yet suddenly, in comes the very personal reality of equality when their daughter waltzes in the door after a vacation with husband-to-be Poitier, a black widower and doctor. Soul searching about just how devoted to equality they really are ensues.
Thus it was no accident that Trump selected this movie to tweak the members of both the Palm Beach town council and the larger white society it represented. Trump understood exactly what the game was and he would have none of it. In addition to sending a copy of the movie, he launched his lawyers, who filed that $100 million lawsuit “alleging that the town was discriminating against Mar-a-Lago, in part because it is open to Jews and African-Americans.”
This is the same Donald Trump who employs hundreds of Hispanics in the Trump Organization at its various properties across America and around the globe.
Yet here comes the utterly predictable charge of racism from deportracism.com
The harsh reality of the racism charge against Trump is not only that it is bogus, utterly false from start to finish. The reality is the charges of racism against Trump are coming from the one political force in the country that has a long, deep, and immutable history of racism. A racism that is no relic of a long ago past but both current and visceral, used now as it has always been used — to divide and judge by skin color for political profit.
The good news here that in Donald Trump someone — finally — is standing up to fight back. Just as he fought back all those years ago in Palm Beach when no one was looking.