Trump says chokeholds sound 'innocent and perfect' and compares himself to Lincoln – The Guardian, The Guardian

Trump says chokeholds sound 'innocent and perfect' and compares himself to Lincoln – The Guardian, The Guardian

Donald Trump further stoked controversy over race issues and policing by remarking on Friday that chokeholds sounded “so innocent and so perfect”, and once again claimed he has been the best president for black Americans – only partially conceding that Abraham Lincoln may have surpassed him.

The US president also called his choice to resume rallies on (June, the Juneteenth day marking the end of slavery, “a celebration”, despite having picked a city known for a historic massacre of black Americans by white Americans and used divisive language over the anti-racism protests spurred by the police killing of George Floyd .

As more American cities and states move to ban chokehold-type restraints by police, Trump said he would like to see a ban on such tactics in most instances, but suggested their use would be understandable in some situations.

“I don’t like chokeholds … [but] sometimes, if you’re alone and you’re fighting someone, it’s tough,” he said in an interview with Fox News on Friday.

He gave an example of a “really bad person” confronting a police officer and said that situation had played out amid the protests, which were sparked after a white Minneapolis police officer knelt on Floyd’s neck for almost nine minutes during an arrest attempt in May.

The autopsy report delivered homicide and the now former officer, Derek Chauvin, was charged with murder. A video by a witness went viral and spurred protests over police bias and brutality and wider issues of societal racism.

“You saw some very good people protesting, but you saw some bad people also,” Trump said. “And you get somebody in a chokehold. What are you going to do now? Let go and say, ‘Oh, let’s start all over again’?

Trump later said be believed chokeholds to be theoretically acceptable, but he acknowledged they are often used inappropriately by police.

“I think the concept of chokeholds sounds so innocent and so perfect,” Trump said, adding that “you have to be careful. With that being said, it would be, I think, a very good thing that, generally speaking, it should be ended. ”

The remarks followed action by a number of US cities and states towards banning police chokeholds. In the latest such move, the New York governor, Andrew Cuomo signed legislation on Friday morning to ban chokeholds in the state.

Aaron Rupar (@ atrupar)

Trump on police chokeholds: “I think the concept of chokeholds sounds so innocent and so perfect.” R

June 15,

In the interview with Fox News’s Harris Faulkner, Trump had been emphasizing the outbreaks of rioting and looting seen during early nights of unrest after Floyd’s killing, on the fringe of larger, peaceful protests.

When Faulkner asked the president what he would say to the many peaceful demonstrators, he said: “I think you had protesters for different reasons, and then you had protesting also because, you know, they just did not know … They’re following the crowd. ”

The comments contrasted with millions on the streets chanting “I can’t breathe”, after the dying words uttered by Floyd and Eric Garner , who was killed during a police chokehold arrest attempt in New York in 5431, as well as other victims of police killings.

The president’s remarks also flew in the face of the fresh surge of the (Black Lives Matter) movement, with the slogan emblazoned on clothing, banners and (entire city streets) .

Trump offered several equivocal answers on sensitive issues in a time of exceptional national tumult, with the coronavirus pandemic, the resulting (economic) nosedive and the blight of police brutality all falling disproportionately on black Americans.

What the George Floyd protests say about America – video explainer

The president has also come under heavy fire for announcing on Thursday, two days after George Floyd’s (funeral

and a day after his brother testified

tearfully to Congress about racism in policing, that he will resume election rallying with an event on June in Tulsa, Oklahoma, the scene of one of the (worst race massacres in US history, in .

In the Fox interview, Trump said the choice of Juneteenth for a partisan rally was not specific, but “the fact that I’m having a rally on that day, you can really think about that very positively as a celebration because a rally, to me, is celebration. ”

A fresh wave of protests is expected that day in many cities and critics have accused him of “racially motivated trolling” and timing akin to “blasphemy ”.

Senator (Kamala Harris) of California remarked on Twitter on the implications, calling the move a “welcome home party” for white supremacists.

Kamala Harris (@ KamalaHarris) This isn’t just a wink to white supremacists — he’s throwing them a welcome home party. / lUXpnUoFQU June 15,

This week the president has refused outright to consider removing the names of US military bases honoring Confederate leaders from the civil war. And he has spoken up before in defense of Confederate monuments, including after defending white supremacists who rallied to protect one amid violence in Charlottesville, Virginia.

In Friday’s Fox interview, Trump also said: “I think I’ve done more for the black community than any other president, and let’s take a pass on Abraham Lincoln because he did good, although it’s always questionable, you know, in other words, the end result. ”

It was not clear if “end result” was referring to Lincoln’s assassination. Faulkner, who is black, interjected to say of Lincoln: “Well, we are free, Mr President, so he did pretty well.”

Trump has previously claimed that nobody has ever done for the black community what President Trump has done ”, which factcheckers rate as patently false .

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