“The Anti-Defamation League is reporting a 57 percent increase in anti-Semitic incidents in the U.S. last year, the highest tally that the Jewish civil rights group has counted in more than two decades,” the AP reports.
“In an awkward onstage appearance this week, Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner (R) drank a glass of chocolate milk to demonstrate his belief in diversity,” the Chicago Tribune reports.
Said Rauner: “It’s really, really good. Diversity!”
“Nikolas Cruz, the alleged gunman who killed 17 people at a Florida high school on Wednesday, trained with a white-supremacist group,” its leader told the Daily Beast.
Said Jordan Jereb, captain of the Republic of Florida: “He probably used that training to do what he did yesterday. Nobody I know told him to do that, he just freaked out.”
David Leonhardt and Ian Prasad Philbrick: “The media often falls back on euphemisms when describing Trump’s comments about race: racially loaded, racially charged, racially tinged, racially sensitive. And Trump himself has claimed that he is “the least racist person.” But here’s the truth: Donald Trump is a racist. He talks about and treats people differently based on their race. He has done so for years, and he is still doing so.”
“Here, we have attempted to compile a definitive list of his racist comments – or at least the publicly known ones.”
Kansas state Rep. Jim Alford (R) used racist logic to explain why he believes marijuana should remain illegal, the Garden City Telegram reports.
Said Alford: “Marijuana is an entry drug into the higher drugs. What you really need to do is go back in the ’30s, when they outlawed all types of drugs in Kansas, across the United States. What was the reason why they did that?… I hate to say it, was that the African Americans, they were basically users and they basically responded the worst off to those drugs just because of their character makeup, their genetics and that.”
James Hohmann: “A Manchurian Candidate who was secretly trying to alienate Hispanics would be hard pressed to do as much damage to the Republican brand as President Trump.”
“The administration announced Monday that it will terminate the provisional residency permits of about 200,000 Salvadorans who have lived in the United States since at least 2001, leaving them to face deportation. Trump previously ended what is known as Temporary Protected Status for Nicaraguans and Haitians, and he’s expected to cut off Hondurans later this year.”
“This is part of a strategic, full-court press to make America less hospitable to immigrants, both legal and illegal.”
Key takeaway: “Trump’s nativism may cost Republicans Senate seats this year in Arizona and Nevada, as well as several House seats across the Sunbelt.”
A new Pew Research poll finds that 60% of Americans say President Trump’s election has led to worse race relations in the United States.
Just 8% say Trump’s election has led to better race relations, while 30% say it has not made a difference.
New York Times: “Last year’s contentious presidential election gave oxygen to hate. An analysis of F.B.I. crime data by the Center for the Study of Hate & Extremism at California State University, San Bernardino, found a 26 percent increase in bias incidents in the last quarter of 2016 — the heart of the election season — compared with the same period the previous year. The trend has continued into 2017, with the latest partial data for the nation’s five most populous cities showing a 12 percent increase.”
“Peppered among these incidents is a phenomenon distinct from the routine racism so familiar in this country: the provocative use of ‘Trump,’ after the man whose comments about Mexicans, Muslims and undocumented immigrants — coupled with his muted responses to white nationalist activity — have proved so inflammatory.”
“For the first time in American politics, anonymous ‘dark money’ political donations could become tax-deductible. That’s if a provision currently being debated between House and Senate negotiators makes it into the final tax bill,” CNN reports.
“The issue at hand started with the ‘Johnson Amendment,’ named after then-Sen. Lyndon Johnson’s 1954 measure that prohibits nonprofit groups who maintain tax-exempt status, including churches and charities, from directly participating in politics.”
“But efforts to repeal the Johnson Amendment have resulted in language that would ease political speech rules for all nonprofits. The results, critics say, could effectively let people deduct de-facto political donations and further hide those donations and spending from the public.”
A new Winthrop University poll finds that nearly half of white Americans living in the South feel like they’re under attack.
“Forty-six percent of white Southerners said they agree or strongly agree that white people are under attack in the U.S. More than three-fourths of black respondents said they believe racial minorities are under attack. And 30 percent of all respondents in the poll agreed when asked if America needs to protect and preserve its white European heritage.”