14 of the most ridiculous and dangerous things Trump said this week

Joanna Taylor
Sunday 27 September 2020 07:00
news

From blaming "environmentalists" for California's wildfires to failing to commit to a peaceful transfer of power if he loses the election, Trump has had a fairly intense – and chilling – week.

He spouted numerous ridiculous and even dangerous things during his rally in Pennsylvania, interview with Fox News and various White House press conferences.

Here's just 14 of the most bizarre and scary comments Trump has made this week.

1. He refused to commit to a peaceful transfer of power if he loses the election.

Asked to make such a commitment during a press conference, the president responded:

Well, we're going to have to see what happens. Do you know that I've been complaining very strongly about the ballots? The ballots are a disaster. 

We want to get rid of the ballots and [then] you'll have a very peaceful [transfer]. There won't be a transfer, frankly, there'll be a continuation. The ballots are out of control. You know it. 

Trump has repeatedly railed against mail-in voting, claiming that it is enabling mass voter fraud. He has also accused the Democrats of sending out millions of ballots across the US without oversight.

So far his claims have proven to be unfounded and have been resisted by the United States courts.

2. He made racist statements about congresswoman Ilhan Omar.

At a rally in Pennsylvania, Trump claimed that Minnesota's congresswoman Ilhan Omar is "telling us how to run our country".

We're going to win the state of Minnesota because of her, they say. She's telling us how to run our country. How did you do it where you came from? How is your country doing?

Omar, who fled civil war in Somalia and sought asylum in the United States, became a naturalised US citizen in 2000. She had the perfect response to Trump's vile rant.

3. He described watching violence against journalists as a "beautiful sight".

Trump has a disturbing habit of calling completely inappropriate things "beautiful". This has so far included military equipment, the World Wars and health care workers "running into death just like soldiers running into bullets" while combatting coronavirus.

We can now add a new item to that list: the sight of journalists being thrown to the ground by the National Guard as they try to report on protests.

At his Pennsylvania rally, Trump said:

They were grabbing them left and right. Sometimes they grabbed one guy – "I'm a reporter, I'm a reporter!" – get out of here. 

They threw him aside like he was a little bag of popcorn. Honestly, when you watch the crap that we've all had to take so long... you don't want to do that, but when you see it, it's actually a beautiful sight. It's a beautiful sight. 

Multiple journalists were injured and even shot with rubber bullets by police and the National Guard as they attempted to report on the Black Lives Matter protests.

4. He downplayed coronavirus... again.

Back in February, Trump told Watergate journalist Bob Woodward that he wanted to play down the threat of coronavirus because "I don't want to create a panic".

Publicly, he repeatedly likened the virus to the flu and assured the American people it would simply "disappear".

His head-in-the-sand approach apparently hasn't changed, because this week he said of coronavirus:

Now we know it affects elderly people, elderly people with heart problems and other problems. If they have other problems, that's what it really affects. That's it. [...] It affects virtually nobody.

5. He raged that "crooked" NBC didn't report on his Nobel Peace Prize nomination.

And completely misapplied the word 'beautiful' again!

NBC is one of the worst, one of the most crooked newscasts. I turn on NBC with Lester Holt, another beauty, and they start with the hurricane and then they went to something. And something. And something else. And I'm saying, first lady, this is getting a little embarrassing, we're 20 minutes into a half hour show. They haven't mentioned the Nobel Peace Prize. And it went through the whole show it never got mentioned. And then I got nominated for another one. 

When Barack Obama, when Barack Hussein Obama, got nominated, he didn't know why he was nominated. It was like at the very beginning, he didn't do anything. He did nothing, but when he got nominated it was the biggest story ever! But that's okay, in the mean time, we're president and they're not, right? 

Trump has been nominated for two Nobel Peace prizes for his roles in brokering peace deals between Kosovo and Serbia and Israel and the United Arab Emirates. Any member of a national parliament can nominate someone for the award.

Winners don't tend to mock other people's names, as Trump did Obama's, though.

6. He refused to comment on the US hitting 200,000 deaths from coronavirus.

Aside from what Trump did say this week, there's also the glaring omissions of what he didn't say.

The president refused to so much as acknowledge the number of deaths from coronavirus in America.

7. He also refused to comment on the death of Breonna Taylor.

One of the three police officers involved in the fatal shooting of Black EMT nurse Breonna Taylor was charged this week, but it was with "wanton endangerment" for firing into a neighbour's house, not with causing her death.

Protests sprang up in response to this "systemic injustice", but Trump refused to answer a reporter's repeated questions about them, instead leaving the press conference to answer the phone.

8. He made sexist and classist comments about "suburban housewives".

During a long ramble about "the suburbia of the world" which he claims Biden would destroy, Trump said:

If you say suburban housewife you're in deep trouble. So what you do is you say suburban women. They love me, you know why? They want security and they don't want projects being right next to their house.

Trump could, in theory, be talking about any kind of project, but 'the projects' in the US typically refers to subsidised housing for people on low incomes.

Black Americans were pushed into these urban housing developments in disproportionate numbers in the twentieth century, creating a form of "segregation" between them and people living in the white, middle-class suburbs.

Trump's implication, then, that the projects could encroach on the homes of suburban housewives, is a kind of racist, sexist and classist hat trick.

9. He mispronounced 'Ohio'.

We all do that thing sometimes when we try to say two words at once and it comes out as a new, mangled word.

And that's exactly what happened when Trump tried to say "hello Ohio".

But unfortunately for him, it happened just seconds after he said his administration is "protesting stupidity".

10. He also mispronounced 'Ulysses'.

Mispronouncing words pales into insignificance next to the countless malevolent things Trump has said and done.

But it's worth noting that Trump frequently does this despite attacking "Sleepy Joe" Biden for exactly the same thing.

Back in February, Trump said at a rally:

Sleepy Joe. Can you imagine if I said just a small fraction of the mistakes he makes, which are unbelievable. Every speech.

At his rally this week, Trump attempted to praise former US president "Ulyssesius S Grant". Ironic.

11. He said Prince Harry needs "a lot of luck" in his marriage to Meghan Markle.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle released a video with TIME magazine in which they urged Americans to vote in the "most important election of our lifetime". Harry commented that "it's vital that we reject hate speech, misinformation and online negativity", which a lot of people interpreted as being aimed at Trump.

But even though it was Harry who said this, it was Meghan (of course) who received the brunt of Trump's vitriol.

When asked about the video at a press conference, Trump responded:

I'm not a fan of hers ... and she probably has heard that. I wish a lot of luck to Harry, 'cause he's gonna need it.

12. He tried to blame "environmentalists" for California's wildfires.

Rather than admitting that climate change is a problem, Trump instead tried to pin his country's environmental issues on the very people trying to address them.

During an interview with Fox News's Mark Levin, he said of the wildfires:

When the leaves build up and you have a floor of leaves and the trees fall down and you don't remove them because the environmentalists don't want you to touch the trees, within 18 months that tree gets to be like a matchstick, it gets to be very flammable.

His evidence that poor management rather than climate change is to blame for California's wildfires?

There are fewer fires in other countries where the trees are "far more explosive".

I meet with foreign leaders of countries and they have an expression, ‘sir, we are a forrest nation’, but they say we have trees that are far more explosive than the trees in California, we don’t understand how a thing like that can happen.

To top it off, Trump then claimed that environmentalists are causing problems with the US's water supply because they're trying to save smelt.

He even smeared the fish the way he would a political opponent, remarking that it's "a tiny little fish ... that's doing very poorly, by the way".

13. He insulted two former high-ranking government officials.

Trump described his former National Security Advisor John Bolton, who wrote a tell-all book about his administration, as a "very stupid person". He added:

If I listened to John Bolton, we'd be in World War Five right now.

He then said that former defence secretary Jim Mattis was "fired like a dog" by Obama.

14. He told his supporters to "call the authorities" when they see the "other side" committing voter fraud.

Trump should know by now that his words can have severe consequences. In March, a man died after trying to recreate hydroxychloroquine, the drug Trump repeatedly touted as a "cure" for coronavirus despite it having no proven benefit.

So he should know that his obsession with mail-in voter fraud, for which there is also no real evidence, is unlikely to end well. It already has people questioning whether he'll relinquish power if beaten by Joe Biden in November.

But regardless, Trump instructed his supporters to call the police when they see Democrats "cheating". He reportedly said:

Early voting has already begun and when you see them cheating on the other side – I don't say if – when, when you see them cheating with those ballots, all of those unsolicited ballots, those millions of ballots, you see them. Anytime you do, report them to the authorities.

Just a week in the life of the 'leader of the free world'.

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