US President Donald Trump defends initial response to Charlottesville violence

August 16, 2017 5:35 am
President has defended his initial response to last week’s bloody rally in Charlottesville, suggesting that the counter-protesters were just as violent as the white supremacists.
On Saturday, thousands of white supremacists, KKK members and neo-Nazis descended on Charlottesville for a “Unite the Right” rally. The march soon turned violent. A 20-year-old man plowed a vehicle into a group of anti-hate demonstrators protesting against the white supremacist rally, killing a woman and injuring 20 others.
Trump first blamed the violence “on many sides”, but after pressure against him piled up, he declared Monday that “racism is evil,” singling out white supremacists, neo-Nazis and Ku Klux Klan for the violent rally.
However, on Tuesday, the president returned to his highly criticized initial response.
“I’ve condemned neo-Nazis, I’ve condemned many different groups, but not all of those people were neo-Nazis, believe me, not all of those people were white supremacists,” Trump told reporters at a press conference at Trump Tower.
“You had a group on one side that was bad and you had a group on the other side that was also very violent. Nobody wants to say it, but I will say it right now.”
The president’s remarks raised questions about his own personal views of racial tensions in the US, provoking bitter criticism from members of his own party.
‘There is only one side’ 
“We must be clear. White supremacy is repulsive. This bigotry is counter to all this country stands for. There can be no moral ambiguity,” said House Speaker Paul Ryan, (R-Wis.).

House Speaker Paul Ryan speaks to the media about issues before the House, during his weekly media briefing on Capitol Hill, July 27, 2017, in Washington, DC. (Photo by AFP)

“Blaming ‘both sides’ for #Charlottesville?! No. Back to relativism when dealing with KKK, Nazi sympathizers, white supremacists? Just no.” Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, (R-Fla.), tweeted.
Also, Rep. Charlie Dent, a Republican from Pennsylvania, said Trump “must stop the moral equivalency! AGAIN.”
House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi also slammed Trump’s response, saying, “There is only one side to be on when a white supremacist mob brutalizes and murders in America.”

US House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi speaks at her weekly press conference on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, on July 27, 2017. (Photo by AFP)

#ImpeachTrump becomes #1 trend on Twitter
Following the press conference, thousands of Americans took to social media to express their outrage. The hashtag #ImpeachTrump shot up to become the #1 trend on Twitter worldwide.

 im a republican and this man is unstable and doesn’t represent this country! He’s an embarrassment!!

When KKK are marching w/o hoods & Nazis are waving flags in America, our biggest threat is not North Korea. It’s Donald Trump. 

If you’re someone who voted for him, you are at a crossroads. You can admit your mistake & work to fix it. It’s not too late. 

This can’t stay as a US Issue. For the sake of the world, world peace, World War; this needs to go global. 
Critics say that Trump’s divisive rhetoric and policies against immigrants and minorities before and after his election has emboldened far-right groups and promoted hate crimes across the country.
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