Black Virginia lawmakers boycott Trump event over 'racist and xenophobic rhetoric'


The Virginia Legislative Black Caucus won't appear with Trump at a Jamestown celebration.

After weeks of Trump's unrelenting racist attacks, a group of black Virginia lawmakers is boycotting a Trump appearance in their state, the Associated Press reported Monday.

The Virginia Legislative Black Caucus (VLBC) released a statement saying they will not attend a celebration in Jamestown celebrating the 400th anniversary of the first representative assembly in the Western Hemisphere because Trump will be participating.

"The participation of the President is antithetical to the principles for which the caucus stands," the group said in a statement. "The commemoration of the birth of this nation and its democracy will be tarnished unduly with the participation of the President, who continues to make degrading comments toward minority leaders, promulgate policies that harm marginalized communities, and use racist and xenophobic rhetoric."


Trump is scheduled to give remarks Tuesday in Jamestown, and the VLBC has planned alternate celebrations as to not participate with Trump.

Before departing for Virginia, Trump claimed without any evidence that African Americans "have never been so happy at what a president has done." Trump also said the boycott by the VLBC was "all a fix" and that "African American people love the job I'm doing." Trump did not address his 13% approval rating among African Americans.

In contrast to Trump's claims, the VLBC is not happy at all with Trump's actions and rhetoric.

"The VLBC will not in good conscience sit silently and support his inclusion in this event. It is impossible to ignore the emblem of hate and disdain that the President represents," the group said.

The boycott comes after years of Trump's racism, which have escalated in recent weeks. In mid-July, Trump attacked Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), Ayanna Pressley (D-MA), Ilhan Omar (D-MN) and Rashida Tlaib (D-MI), saying the four women of color should "go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came."

Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) embraced the white supremacist message of sending a black congresswoman "back to Africa" when he offered to pay for Omar's flight to Somalia. Omar fled Somalia, where she was born, as a child, and came to the United States as a refugee, eventually being elected to both state government and then as a representative in Congress.

More recently, Trump attacked Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD) and the largely black district Cummings' represents, which includes parts of Baltimore. Trump described Cummings' district as a "disgusting, rat and rodent-infested mess" and a "very dangerous & filthy place."

The culmination of Trump's racism led to black Virginia lawmakers taking a stand.

Trump's "repeated attacks on Black legislators and comments about Black communities makes him ill-suited to honor and commemorate such a monumental period in history, especially if this nation is to move forward with the ideals of 'democracy, inclusion, and opportunity,'" the group wrote.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.