President Donald Trump has a penchant for using racially offensive, stereotypical terms while talking about immigrants or people of color.
For instance, he called Mexicans “criminals,” “bad hombres,” “drug dealers” and “rapists,” reportedly referred to Haiti and African nations as “shithole countries,” talked about banning Muslims from entering the country, called hurricane-ravaged Puerto Ricans “politically motivated ingrates” and has repeatedly called Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren “Pocahontas” to mock her Native-American heritage.
However, the commander-in-chief seems to have taken his white nationalist rhetoric even further in his latest tweet.
Trump, who once called white supremacists “very fine people” and blamed “both sides” for the deadly alt-right rally in Charlottesville, recently took to his favorite mode of communication to blast California for fighting the Trump administration over the so-called sanctuary cities.
There is a Revolution going on in California. Soooo many Sanctuary areas want OUT of this ridiculous, crime infested & breeding concept. Jerry Brown is trying to back out of the National Guard at the Border, but the people of the State are not happy. Want Security & Safety NOW!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 18, 2018
For starters, the word “revolution” sounds a bit of an overstatement considering leaders of San Diego and Orange counties recently joined Trump’s lawsuit against the state's sanctuary law.
As far as the second part of Trump’s tweet is concerned, it’s even more problematic than his usual tweets.
The word “breeding” is generally used for animal reproduction, thus it has really negative connotations. Now, the fact Trump used it while talking about immigrants is not only utterly racist and extremely offensive, it also mirrors popular white supremacist rhetoric dehumanizing immigrants, particularly people of color.
As CNN and several social media users pointed out, this term was once used in relation to Jewish people living in the Warsaw Ghetto in German-occupied Europe during World War II. It was also used for Catholics from Ireland and Italy and now, it appears, for people from Central America, Middle East and Africa, among other regions.
Interestingly, this is the first time the president appears to have used “breeding” while talking about immigrants, which points toward his seemingly flourishing white supremacist ideology.
Meanwhile, Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen declined to comment on Trump’s “breeding concept” during an interview.
“Generally from where I stand, we have immigration laws, we need to enforce them no matter who is breaking those laws,” Nielsen told CNN. “I think overall he's talking about a very serious problem that we have with sanctuary cities who are turning their back on federal laws and making it that much more difficult and dangerous for us to do our jobs to protect the American people.”
Infested. Breeding. Words both typically applied to animals, the former specifically to pests that humans exterminate. In case you had any question about how Trump sees non-white foreigners or any doubt about his Hitler-like beliefs. pic.twitter.com/mfF4p0F8m2— OhNoSheTwitnt (@OhNoSheTwitnt) April 18, 2018
Wow. Hey @realDonaldTrump, how does it feel to have just equated immigrants with breeding animals and pest infestations? These are human beings. Every human has inherent worth & dignity. Try acting dignified sometime...it would do you good. https://t.co/rGtytEyXYa— Jess Phoenix (@jessphoenix2018) April 18, 2018
Who the hell “wants out of this breeding concept” and what does that even mean? How is Trump not embarrassed by tweeting such nonsense? How do some people not see how incredibly & unceasingly stupid this lying, fake billionaire is? https://t.co/HtWyxVyUcD— James Gunn (@JamesGunn) April 18, 2018
The phrase "breeding concept" is ridiculous enough that we might get distracted from how Trump is using white supremacists imagery to talk about immigrants. pic.twitter.com/9l5MYrox7l— ana marie cox (@anamariecox) April 18, 2018
Trump just described Mexicans as "infestation and breeding concept"— Pesach 'Pace' Lattin ? (@pacelattin) April 18, 2018
First. What? Second how is this not racist?
"Breeding"? Like animals? Like jews were breeding in the Warsaw ghetto? Like slaves? Like Irish Catholics were accused of, Mexicans, any group in history who've been victimised and dehumanised and villified? Your rhetoric (look it up) shames us all, as does your presidency #Trump https://t.co/HucikTGR9l— Jason Isaacs (@jasonsfolly) April 19, 2018
Those of us who are Jewish—and who learned about the Warsaw Ghetto at such a young age it was before we'd learned about any other embattled majority-minority neighborhood—know *exactly* what Trump meant when he complained about immigrants "breeding." https://t.co/FhIhm4Kro5— Seth Abramson (@SethAbramson) April 19, 2018
Thumbnail/Banner: Reuters, Kevin Lamarque