Singer John Legend made it clear that his support does not lie with presidential hopeful Donald Trump today after Donald Trump, Jr. tweeted that students did not even know why the Chicago protests were going on.
Ha 5 students when asked why they were protesting couldn't even answer. The participation medal/micro aggression generation is pretty sad!— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) March 12, 2016
Legend was quick to respond to Trump, Jr.’s tweet.
.@DonaldJTrumpJr I think they were protesting your racist father. This isn't complicated.— John Legend (@johnlegend) March 12, 2016
Legend attended the same university as both Donald Trump, Jr. and Donald Trump, according to KTLA5. Legend was a student at the University of Pennsylvania. In fact, Legend graduated magna cum laude with a degree in English and a concentration in African American Literature and Culture, according to Daily Mail.
The Twitter war that was sparked as a result of this exchange resulted in a firestorm of comments from both sides, with several tweets referencing Trump Jr’s 7,000 likes for his tweet and Legend’s 88,000 likes and 65,000 retweets.
Musician Josh Groban supported Legend as well, tweeting that “When Trump says ‘I’d hate for anyone to get hurt’ I can just see his miniature orange fingers crossed behind his back.” Filmmaker Michael Moore also retweeted Legend’s tweet about Trump being racist, implying that it was not anything new or controversial, and therefore was not newsworthy.
Legend also slammed IBNN News when they took aim at the Grammy-winning singer for his comments about the clashes between protesters and demonstrators at the Trump rally.
John Legend went from 0 to 100 real quick pic.twitter.com/pHjZD8AP37
— Jack Mull (@J4CKMULL) March 13, 2016
Two police officers were injured after Trump abruptly cancelled a campaign rally, and with some 10,000 supporters set to show up at the event, there were many people disappointed when they learned that the Trump rally had been axed.
According to Mashable, some at the melee were clearly Bernie Sanders supporters while there were others in attendance that appeared aligned with the Black Lives Matter movement. While Trump supporters exited the building where the Chicago rally was supposed to occur, the protesters chanted “bigots”.
Trump apparently decided to cancel the Chicago rally very quickly when a planned St. Louis rally devolved into a mass of shouting and angry protests. He blamed the decline of the atmosphere at the St. Louis rally on the protesters, and the conditions at the St. Louis rally governed his decision to axe the Chicago rally.
During their Twitter feud, Trump, Jr. told Legend that saying someone or something was racist was the latest reason as to why the country was divided. Legend was in no mood to entertain that sort of rhetoric, however; he quickly clapped back at Trump Jr, saying that “It’s just the answer when racist racists are saying racist s—t and are endorsed by the KKK.”
— Us Weekly (@usweekly) March 12, 2016
There have been members of the Klu Klux Klan who have attended Trump rallies in the past, and while Trump previously denied any sort of knowledge of David Duke or anyone with KKK affiliations, he has continued to garner support among white nationalists, according to the New Yorker. Trump did disavow David Duke, former grand wizard, though Duke said that failure to support Trump would be “treason to your heritage.”
Regardless of the support of one of the most recognized symbols of racism in North America, Trump and his followers are clearly supporting the view that their leader is not a racist, in spite of John Legend’s claims to the contrary. As the presidential campaign progresses, it will be interesting to see whether Trump continues to gain support from white nationalists and see the numbers of those protesting his campaign grow, or whether those against his apparently racist views will continue to be vocal in their disapproval of him.
(Photo by Brian Ach/Getty Images for Make-A-Wish Metro New York)