Race and the race-baiting of the United States has become an ever-more prominent theme in American politics and the media since Donald Trump took office in January.
During the 2016 election, Trump’s campaign used a number of racial and religious slurs and coded language to win votes, as well as the backing of some white supremacists, and the rhetoric has been repeated in the White House, as President Donald Trump has often boasted about his “tremendous” approval ratings.
“I am in awe of the level of support that I’ve gotten from the American people,” Trump said during a speech at the University of Alabama in Huntsville, Alabama, in August.
Trump’s approval ratings have continued to rise since his election, rising from 43% in April to 70% in August, and in November he surpassed 70% approval ratings in the most recent ABC News/Washington Post poll.
White nationalist groups have been increasingly emboldened by the rise of Trump, who has promised to build a wall along the US-Mexico border, ban Muslims from entering the US and deport millions of undocumented immigrants.
The president has said he will build a border wall, deport the parents of US citizens and stop all refugees from entering from Syria.
At least 14 people have died in clashes between protesters and police in the US, including two police officers killed by a man who brandished a knife and a woman who was shot in the head by a police officer.
The latest incident took place in Los Angeles.
In the wake of the latest shooting, a group of white supremacists held a rally in Washington DC, and a group led by former KKK leader David Duke marched through downtown Portland, Oregon.
Last week, an angry rally was held in Charlottesville, Virginia, in which participants chanted “Jews will not replace us”, and waved white nationalist flags.
More recently, white nationalist Richard Spencer, who served as the national chairman of the National Policy Institute (NPI), a white nationalist think tank, was scheduled to speak at the College of William and Mary in Virginia, but was barred from entering due to a security issue.
Spencer’s appearance at the university was cancelled on Monday, following a petition from students, and he has since blamed the cancellation on the White Supremacist website VDARE.com.
A rally in Seattle was also cancelled, according to the Seattle Times, after the Seattle Police Department said Spencer would not be allowed to speak.
On Friday, an anti-fascist group called Antifa, which describes itself as a “black bloc anti-fascism”, took to Twitter to demand that the president cancel the event, calling the rally a “racist, white supremacist rally”.
“You know, it’s clear that Trump and his supporters, and their media mouthpieces, have decided that the time has come to move the country back into the past,” Antifa said in a tweet.
“We will not stand by and allow our nation to descend into the same levels of hate and violence that we saw in Charlottesville and Berkeley,” the group added.
Anti-facist protesters in Berkeley, California.
Source: AP/ABC News (file) At the same time, the president has also been under fire from the media, who have repeatedly labelled him a racist, a bigot and a racist-fascist.
One of the most prominent examples of this is when Trump said in an interview on Fox News on November 6 that the white nationalists he had encountered were “very fine people”, after a white supremacist was killed by police in Charlottesville.
Many of Trump’s critics have used the term “white supremacist”, including Breitbart News’ Milo Yiannopoulos, who was fired from Twitter for the tweet, and white nationalist leader Richard Spencer.
But Trump has also used the word “fascist” to describe a number other groups.
In April, a member of the Ku Klux Klan claimed to have a video of a Trump supporter holding up a sign with the words “Jews control the US” and “Trump is the most powerful person in the world”.
The claim has since been debunked.