President Donald Trump has accused director Spike Lee of being racist towards him in an early morning tweet. The President was most likely responding to Lee’s acceptance speech at Sunday night’s Oscars. Accusing someone of being racist towards him is a relatively new Trump tactic.
“Be nice if Spike Lee could read his notes, or better yet not have to use notes at all, when doing his racist hit on your President, who has done more for African Americans (Criminal Justice Reform, Lowest Unemployment numbers in History, Tax Cuts,etc.) than almost any other Pres!” Trump tweeted.
Lee gave an impassioned speech about race while accepting his award at the Oscars ceremony and included a rallying cry about the 2020 election. However, Lee did not mention Trump by name, though his speech was the most political of the evening.
“The 2020 presidential election is around the corner. Let’s all mobilise. Let’s all be on the right side of history. Make the moral choice between love versus hate,” Lee said.
Despite Lee’s call for love over hate, President Trump has interpreted it as a racist attack on him, presumably believing that Lee dislikes him because he is white. This echoes a claim made by Trump that there is racially-tinged prejudice against his supporters.
Trump’s criticism of Lee for reading from notes could be interpreted as having racial undertones. Trump has been known to question the intelligence and IQ of African-American critics and his former lawyer, Michael Cohen, claimed he made racist assertions.
Trump also used Twitter to criticize the 58 former national security officials who will today issue a 13-page statement arguing against the state of national emergency.
“So funny to watch people who have failed for years, they got NOTHING, telling me how to negotiate with North Korea. But thanks anyway!” Trump said, though he was in fact re-tweeting himself.