Calling the black director of a film about the destruction of a Ku Klux Klan cell “racist” was always going to be an ambitious move, but US President Donald Trump saw Spike Lee’s Oscars acceptance speech and decided to take a swing anyway.
Trump took to Twitter overnight to criticise Lee’s speech, which the BlacKkKlansman writer and director delivered yesterday after winning the Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay.
In case you missed it, Lee – who did not explicitly mention Trump once in his address – referenced February as Black History Month and America‘s long and despicable history of slavery.
“Our ancestors were stolen from Mother Africa and bought to Jamestown, Virginia, enslaved. Our ancestors worked the land from can’t see in the morning to can’t see at night,” Lee said, adding “I give praise to our ancestors who have built this country into what it is today along with the genocide of its native people.”
Closing out, Lee asked attendees to consider the upcoming 2020 presidential election, calling on them to “do the right thing!”
That was apparently enough to stoke the ire of Trump, who saw the address as a threat.
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!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 25, 2019
The suggestion from Trump’s tweet: he thinks Lee urging people to go out and vote is a “racist hit,” which feels like belling the cat.
Not like Trump’s comments on President Barack Obama‘s birth certificate, Nigeria, Senator Elizabeth Warren, Mexican migrants, kneeling NFL footballers, or the Central Park Five could be construed as racist. And that’s not even broaching the alleged tapes of him using racial slurs.