Donald Trump has received a public co-sign from former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke, yet another show of support from a troubling source. With Trump’s recent victories in Nevada and South Carolina, the former reality TV star’s stranglehold over the Republican party was only strengthened. “We won with poorly educated,” Trump bragged during his victory speech in Nevada before delivering the following gem to uproarious applause: “I love the poorly educated.” Though it’s easy to laugh at the obvious ridiculousness of such a statement (Trump is—after all—bragging about the intellectual shortcomings of his own supporters), and even easier to compare our current state of affairs to unintentional documentary Idiocracy, something far more sinister than mere dumbness is afoot among some Trump enthusiasts.
“Voting against Donald Trump at this point is really treason to your heritage,” David Duke, a former Ku Klux Klan grand wizard and current host of the David Duke Radio Program, told his listeners on Wednesday. Though he adds that he is not “formally” endorsing Trump, BuzzFeed News reports that Duke is calling on his followers to actively engage with the Trump campaign as a “strategic action” to ensure the continuation of people like Duke and what they represent.
“When this show’s over, go out, call the Republican Party, but call Donald Trump’s headquarters, volunteer,” Duke told listeners, as quoted by BuzzFeed. According to Duke, his listeners will easily encounter people with “the same kind of mindset” once they start actively participating in Trump’s campaign. As for what sort of “mindset” Duke is likely referencing, one need look no further than the Southern Poverty Law Center’s breakdown of the notorious white nationalist’s egregious history of oppression:
“David Duke is the most recognizable figure of the American radical right, a neo-Nazi, longtime Klan leader and now international spokesman for Holocaust denial who has nevertheless won election to Louisiana’s House of Representatives and once was nearly elected governor.” Just so we’re entirely clear here, Trump’s campaign has a man like that—a vehement racist like David Duke—excited enough to fervently issue a request to his followers to throw their energy into ensuring Trump’s election. Sadly, as several polls and even just a cursory glance at social media have shown, many of Trump’s supporters have already received the message.
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