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NYT Columnist: Donald Trump Has a 'Consistent Pattern' of Racism

Donald Trump

Nicholas Kristof unearthed several ghosts from Donald Trump's past that show a history of bias from the GOP presidential candidate.

Nicholas Kristof has found Donald Trump guilty of racism.

The New York Times writer combed through 40 years of the Republican presidential candidate's personal life and business dealings. In his most recent column, he discussed his findings: a series of events that demonstrates a history of bias.

First, the U.S. Department of Justice sued Trump and his father, Fred Trump, for housing discrimination against black people in 1973. To prove this claim, black and white testers were sent to apartment buildings owned by the family's real estate firm. The black testers were frequently turned away. At least one superintendent was told to mark their applications "with the letter C, for colored, apparently so the office would know to reject it."

Second, Trump played a hand in inciting public animosity against a group of five black teenagers who were accused of attacking and raping a woman in Central Park in 1989. To bias the city against them, Trump purchased full-page ads advocating for the death penalty. The young men were later found to have been wrongfully convicted, but not before serving years in prison.

Third, Trump reportedly wanted to fire an accountant of the Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City due to his race. A book by John O'Donnell, its former president, quoted Trump saying in 1991, "Black guys counting my money! I hate it. The only kind of people I want counting my money are short guys that wear yarmulkes every day." Trump added that the accountant was "lazy" and "it's probably not his fault, because laziness is a trait in blacks."

Kristof's article comes in the wake of the news that a former KKK leader, white supremacist David Duke, announced that he will run for the U.S. Senate after being inspired by Trump's speech at the Republican National Convention. A recent video from MoveOn.org showed the "scary" similarities between their platforms.

In addition to this history, there's also Trump's more recent record of grievances to consider, including proposing a temporary ban on Muslims entering the U.S. and remarks disparaging Mexican immigrants.

While Kristof is hesitant to throw around the word "racist"--he notes "with any single statement, it is possible that Trump misspoke or was misconstrued"--he ultimately settles on the term.

"Here we have a man who for more than four decades has been repeatedly associated with racial discrimination or bigoted comments about minorities, some of them made on television for all to see," he concluded. "While any one episode may be ambiguous, what emerges over more than four decades is a narrative arc, a consistent pattern -- and I don't see what else to call it but racism."

Read the full op-ed in The New York Times.

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