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Ta-Nehisi Coates’ one-sentence argument for why Donald Trump really is a white supremacist

By Hanna Kozlowska
Published Last updated This article is more than 2 years old.

Ta-Nehisi Coates has a very simple argument for why Donald Trump is a white supremacist: the US president’s own past actions.

Coates, a writer for The Atlantic, appeared on MSNBC’s All In With Chris Hayes to talk about his new essay, “Donald Trump is the First White President.” In the piece, Coates eloquently writes about why Trump’s real ideology should be considered white supremacy, but in the interview, he boils it down to just one sentence.

Hayes asks him why the term “white supremacist” should apply to Trump, and Coates answers:

I think if you own a business that attempts to keep black people from renting from you; if you are reported to say that you don’t want black people counting your money; if you say—and not even reported, just come out and say—that someone can’t judge your case because they are Mexican; if your response to the first black president is that they weren’t born in this country, despite all proof; if you say they weren’t smart enough to go to Harvard Law School, and demand to see their grades; if that’s the essence of your entire political identity you might be a white supremacist, it’s just possible.

For the longer version of Coates’s argument, you should definitely read his full piece in The Atlantic.

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