Hillary Clinton accused President Donald Trump of “calling for violence against American citizens” in an early Friday morning tweet about cracking down on riots in Minneapolis.
“The president of the United States is calling for violence against American citizens,” the former secretary of state tweeted.
“That is so wrong. We need honest reckoning and reconciliation.”
The president of the United States is calling for violence against American citizens.
That is so wrong. We need honest reckoning and reconciliation.
If you haven’t already joined the work to replace him in November, start now.
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) May 29, 2020
Trump has asked the FBI and Department of Justice to investigate Floyd’s death but has pushed back against the riots.
“I can’t stand back & watch this happen to a great American City, Minneapolis,” Trump tweeted Thursday.
“A total lack of leadership. Either the very weak Radical Left Mayor, Jacob Frey, get his act together and bring the City under control, or I will send in the National Guard & get the job done right.”
“These THUGS are dishonoring the memory of George Floyd, and I won’t let that happen. Just spoke to Governor Tim Walz and told him that the Military is with him all the way. Any difficulty and we will assume control but, when the looting starts, the shooting starts. Thank you!” Trump wrote.
Twitter hid the second part of the tweet containing the word “thugs,” which meant users had to first read a disclaimer about why the tweet was hidden.
“This Tweet violates our policies regarding the glorification of violence based on the historical context of the last line, its connection to violence, and the risk it could inspire similar actions today,” Twitter posted on its own account.
In 1967, Miami Police Chief Walter Headley announced what a United Press International article from the time described as a “crackdown on Negro slum hoodlums.”
“In declaring war on ‘young hoodlums, from 15 to 21, who have taken advantage of the civil rights campaign,’ Headley said, ‘we don’t mind being accused of police brutality,’” the outlet reported.
“Headley said Miami hasn’t been troubled with racial disturbances and looting because he let the word filter down, ‘When the looting starts, the shooting [starts].’”
There is no indication that Trump knew about the historical context of the phrase he tweeted.
Other Democrats, including former vice president and presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, joined Clinton’s criticism of the tweet.
“I will not lift the President’s tweet. I will not give him that amplification,” Biden tweeted.
“But he is calling for violence against American citizens during a moment of pain for so many. I’m furious, and you should be too.”
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