WASHINGTON, Aug 16 — US President Donald Trump triggered fresh outrage yesterday after reiterating his initial response to the violent white supremacist rally in Charlottesville that resulted in bloodshed, saying there was “blame on both sides”.
The statement once again drew sharp criticism from across the political and cultural board. Here are some reactions from key figures:
‘No moral ambiguity’
“We must be clear. White supremacy is repulsive,” Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan wrote on Twitter.
“This bigotry is counter to all this country stands for. There can be no moral ambiguity.”
‘No place for racial hatred’
“No place for racial hatred or extremism in @USMC,” tweeted General Robert Neller, the Marine Corps commandant.
“Our core values of Honor, Courage, and Commitment frame the way Marines live and act.”
“Charlottesville violence was fueled by one side: white supremacists spreading racism, intolerance & intimidation. Those are the facts,” tweeted Tim Kaine, a Democratic senator from Virginia who was Hillary Clinton’s runningmate in last year’s presidential election.
Made hate ‘fashionable again’
“Hate has always existed in America,” basketball superstar LeBron James tweeted.
“Yes we know that but Donald Trump just made it fashionable again! Statues has nothing to do with us now!”
“Racism, bigotry, anti-Semitism, it is not okay. You can’t support it in any form or fashion,” Republican Congressman Will Hurd of Texas told CNN.
“I think the outrage across the political spectrum about this is maybe the thing that ultimately unites us.”
“President Trump is a sympathiser of neo-Nazi White Supremacists,” Steven Goldstein, head of the Anne Frank Center for Mutual Respect, said in a statement.
“If that doesn’t make him racist and Antisemitic, and sick with hate for other oppressed peoples, what does?”
‘What he really believes’
“W/o a prepared statement, this Pres says what he really believes: Equating neo-Nazis to those protecting civil rights is disgraceful & crazy,” tweeted performer Barbra Streisand.
‘Most shameful weekend’
“The President’s most shameful weekend was just extended indefinitely,” actress-activist Mia Farrow said in a tweet.
“There is only one side,” tweeted the Southern Poverty Law Center, which monitors American hate groups.
“White supremacy is always wrong.” — AFP