A recent viral video of white nationalists yelling “Hail Trump!” in Washington D.C. has sparked debate on whether President-elect Donald Trump has done enough to denounce dangerous neo-Nazi elements of the so-called “alt-right.”
CNN’s Anderson Cooper 360 addressed the topic in a segment Tuesday night. But when commentator Jeffrey Lord tried to make a case for how marginalized groups “provoked” white supremacists, Republican panelist Ana Navarro was not having it.
Lord told host John Berman he believed white supremacists are acting out because everyone gave marginalized groups and activists “a pass” to talk about racial identity and identity politics.
“This is exactly what happens. The left sort of provoked this,” Lord said. When Berman asked him to clarify, he added: “The left, whether it’s Black Lives Matter or La Raza, I mean you can go back and back and back. Groups that identify themselves by race provoked this group to identify by race. This is America.”
Ana Navarro responded to his reasoning by arguing it is Trump who began using identity politics in the election and thus it is his responsibility to disavow racists.
“[Lord] supported a candidate who is now President-Elect that has spent the last 18 months using identity politics as the wedge issue,” Navarro said. “Do you think when he calls Mexicans rapists and criminals that is not identity politics?… What Donald Trump has to do to is take responsibility. He has unleashed the Kraken, that’s why it is not a coincidence that after he got elected, hate crimes spiked up. It is not a coincide the KKK celebrated his victory and wanted a parade in North Carolina or that David Duke celebrated his victory. It is not a coincidence these white supremacists were holding their hands up in a Nazi salute yelling ‘Heil Trump.’”
And the Latina commentator once again insisted that Trump must do more to denounce racism and unite the country.
“He needs to take leadership, he needs to take ownership, he needs to know he has a responsibility in this and he needs to go out and try to unify the country,” Navarro said. “Stop fighting with Broadway, stop fighting with the New York Times. Fight the division in the country. Fight the white supremacists. Stand up and be a unifier for God’s sake.”