Journalists Admit Trump Called MS-13 ‘Animals,’ Still Cry Racism

Alleged members of the MS13 and 18 gang board a police vehicle after being presented to the press in San Salvador on February 26, 2016. Members of the national civil police and the armed forces captured 240 dangerous gang members accused of homicide and extortion in the last three days …
MARVIN RECINOS/AFP/Getty Images

Left-wing journalists conceded on Thursday that President Donald Trump had referred to MS-13, not immigrants in general, as “animals,” but still argued that Trump was racist — or that he was to blame for their own failures to provide accurate context.

Daily Beast reporter Asawin Suebsaeng conceded the industry-wide “mistake” — but blamed “Trump’s past racist comments & policy” for the “misconstrued” statement.

Politico Magazine‘s chief political correspondent Tim Alberta laid equal blame on “a media climate that feeds on outrage and speed” — and Trump’s “history of using racially-charged language.”

CNBC correspondent and John Podesta superfan John Harwood’s objected to Trump’s statement, contending that “MS-13 gang members are human beings [in my humble opinion].”

Glenn Kessler, the Washington Post’s chief “fact checker,” promoted a thread by a Cato Institute Senior Fellow arguing that, even in context, Trump is dehumanizing “brown criminals” in “a textbook case of how dehumanizing and racist rhetoric works.”

CNN’s Ana Navarro sarcastically quipped that it is “unfathomable” that anyone would misinterpret the “animals” remark, given a string of other out-of-context statements from Trump.

Ernest Marshall, another CNN contributor, attacked Trump based on the false meme that the President called white supremacists in Charlottesville “very fine people.”

Josh Marshall of Talking Points Memo argued that White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders “lied” about the MS-13 context, because “Trump clearly was not referring only to MS-13 gang members.” Marshall wrote a blog post, titled “Watch the Whole Video,” and concluded: “the full context is about as damning as the President’s context in isolation.”

A cluster of marginal yet Twitter-Verified writers shared even hotter takes:

Trump and Sanders showed no signs of walking back the statement Thursday, despite the continued outrage.

“If the media and liberals want to defend MS-13, they’re more than welcome to,” Sanders told reporters. “Frankly, I don’t think the term that the president used was strong enough.”

The President responded to a similar question: “When the MS-13 comes in, when the other gang members come into our country, I refer to them as animals and guess what, I always will.”

 

 

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