Arnold Schwarzenegger On Trump: ‘I Know Where Such Lies Lead’

Arnold Schwarzenegger compares Trump supporters to Nazis in Twitter message
Arnold Schwarzenegger compares Trump supporters to Nazis in Twitter message
Arnold Schwarzenegger (screen capture)

Arnold Schwarzenegger, movie star and former Republican Governor of California, did not hold back in a recent video message posted to Twitter that compares the recent invasion of the U.S. Capitol to the violent 1938 attack on Jews known as the “Night of Broken Glass” in his native country Austria.

“I grew up in a country that suffered from the loss of its democracy,” said Schwarzenegger after noting that the 1938 violence was perpetrated by a “Nazi equivalent of the Proud Boys.”

The 73-year-old former politician shared that he grew up knowing people who weren’t Nazis or anti-Semites but who “just went along” with the violence. That included his own father who he admitted would come home drunk and beat him and his mother, like other neighborhood men who were “in emotional pain for what they saw or did.”

“It all started with lies, lies, lies and intolerance,” he continued. “Being from Europe I’ve seen firsthand how bad things can spin out of control.”

“He sought a coup by misleading people with lies,” he said. “I know where such lies lead.”

He also declared that Donald Trump would go down as the “worse president” in history.

No Consequences For Baraboo High School Seniors’ Nazi Salute

The senior boys of Baraboo High School

The boys of the senior class of Baraboo High School will not face any discipline or consequences for their now-infamous Nazi salute photo at their prom last year.

From ABC News:

Officials with a Wisconsin school district say free-speech rights would make it difficult to discipline students who appeared in a photograph that showed several high school boys giving what appears to be a Nazi salute.

The State Journal reports that Baraboo Superintendent Lori Mueller said in a letter to parents Wednesday that officials cannot know the “intentions in the hearts” of those involved. She also said the district isn’t in a position to punish the students because they are protected by the First Amendment.

The photo of about 60 boys was taken outside the Sauk County Courthouse in Baraboo last spring. The parent who took the photographer said he simply asked the boys to wave goodbye to their parents before heading to prom.

Funny – when I wave goodbye to folks it somehow never looks like a Nazi salute.

In the fallout of the scandal, once the photo came to light, several students told Vice contributor Jules Suzdaltsev they had seen and heard a lot of racist language while attending the school.

One student who graduated from BHS this spring wrote Suzdaltsev saying he could “100% support the claims of racism at that school.”

“The use of the n-word was pretty common among a lot of white students, whether jokingly or not,” he added.

Another told Suzdaltsev that the day after Donald Trump was elected, students were yelling “White Power!” in the hallways.

Gay High School Student Explains Why He Didn’t Pose With Nazi Salute

High school senior Jordan Blue

Yesterday, I reported on the prom photo that went viral from Baraboo school district in Wisconsin.

The photo showed about 30 male members of the Baraboo High School Class of 2019 giving the Nazi salute before their junior prom last spring.

As I noted yesterday, one student was not having the moment.

Today, CBS This Morning spoke with the student, Jordan Blue.

Blue tells CBS News the photographer came up with the idea of telling the boys to “wave goodbye to their parents,” but didn’t specifically tell the boys to “raise your hand in a Nazi symbol way.”

But it’s telling that ‘raise you hand’ to these young men meant doing so in Nazi fashion.

Blue added that he felt his classmates did understand what the symbol represented, and that the moment was “scary” and “uncomfortable.”

Photographer Peter Gust has issued a statement which reads, “I didn’t tell them to salute anything… it was waving goodbye to their parents, having a good time.”

“There was nothing that diminished the quality of anyone’s life,” said Gust in defense of the photo. “There was nothing that diminished anyone’s stature in society, there was nothing that was intended to point a finger at anyone in their class who may have some kind of difference. There was none of that.”

When asked why he didn’t participate, Blue tells CBS This Morning, “It did not represent my morals and I could not do something that I didn’t believe in.”

Blue admits making the gesture makes no sense to him, saying, “Some of these people have bright futures ahead of them, so why’d they do it?”

Speaking to CNN, Blue says if he’d known the direction the photo opp would go, he wouldn’t have taken part in the pics at all.

He also says that while the community is a ‘phenomenal’ place to live, people are “hurt and very distraught” over the scandal. And he makes a point to say the photo doesn’t represent Baraboo as a whole.

Blue, who came out as gay earlier this year on social media, shared with Vice reporter Jules Suzdaltsev yesterday that he’s been the target of bullying by these boys since middle school.

Suzdaltsev later tweeted that, after receiving more than 100 messages from students and parents from Baraboo High School, “nearly all of the stories echo the same basic theme: the community as a whole has a lot of casual & jokey racism, homophobia, and transphobia that is accepted as a part of life.”

“The school (and other schools in the area) do little to nothing to address these issues,” he added.

The American Defamation League reports the number of anti-semitic incidents in the U.S. rose 57% in 2017. That’s the largest single year increase on record.

Conservative Pundit Equates Nazi Flags With LGBTQ Pride/Rainbow Flags

Conservative columnist and failed Republican candidate for Congress, Star Parker, told Fox and Friends’ co-host Steve Doocy that she agreed with Donald Trump’s initial claim that the violence and bigotry seen in Charlottesville over the weekend came “from many sides,” saying Trump was “on point.”

Parker then made an attempt at putting white supremacists who carry Nazi flags and drive cars through crowds of people with LGBTQ Pride goers who carry rainbow flags.

“What’s really interesting, and really incredible irony here, is the same people that are demanding that the Confederate flag comes down are the same people that are insisting that the rainbow flag goes up.”

“These two flags represent the exact same thing. That certain people groups are not welcome here. So if Nancy Pelosi wants to say that we’re going to start shutting down First Amendment rights of a certain group of people, then what happens the next time that the homosexuals want to walk through an American city and protest and counter protesters come out?”

It seems to have slipped my mind the total number of deaths that occurred on Saturday at the hands of LGBQs driving cars through crowds of people. Can someone remind me?

It will come as no surprise that Parker has a long history of attacking the LGBTQ community, often describing us as “those choosing the homosexual lifestyle.”

Under Pressure, Donald Trump Finally Denounces KKK/White Supremacists

Donald Trump took finally issued a statement today denouncing the violence and bigotry of white supremacists in Charlottesville, Virginia, this past weekend.

From the New York Times:

“Racism is evil,” Mr. Trump said. “And those who cause violence in its name are criminals and thugs, including the K.K.K., neo-Nazis, white supremacists and other hate groups that are repugnant to everything we hold dear as Americans.”

Several of the president’s top advisers, including his new Chief of Staff John F. Kelly, pressed Mr. Trump to issue a more forceful rebuke after his comment on Saturday that the violence in Charlottesville was initiated by “many sides,” prompting nearly universal criticism.

It’s notable that Trump framed his condemnation with “as I said on Saturday,” which he did not. But we all know that this is a man who never admits he is wrong.

Clearly loathe to issue any statement against white nationalists and bigots, Trump began his remarks with a lengthy self-congratulation on the economy.

That would be the economy he inherited from President Obama.

Donald Trump’s full statement today via NBC News:

I’m in Washington today to meet with my economic team about trade policy and major tax cuts and reform. We are renegotiating trade deals and making them good for the American worker. And it’s about time.

Our economy is now strong. The stock market continues to hit record highs, unemployment is at a 16-year low, and businesses are more optimistic than ever before. Companies are moving back to the United States and bringing many thousands of jobs with them. We have already created over one million jobs since I took office.

We will be discussing economic issues in greater detail later this afternoon, but, based on the events that took place over the weekend in Charlottesville, Virginia, I would like to provide the nation with an update on the ongoing federal response to the horrific attack and violence that was witnessed by everyone.

I just met with FBI Director Christopher Wray and Attorney General Jeff Sessions. The Department of Justice has opened a civil rights investigation into the deadly car attack that killed one innocent American and wounded 20 others. To anyone who acted criminally in this weekend’s racist violence, you will be held fully accountable. Justice will be delivered.

As I said on Saturday, we condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry, and violence. It has no place in America.

And as I have said many times before: No matter the color of our skin, we all live under the same laws, we all salute the same great flag, and we are all made by the same almighty God. We must love each other, show affection for each other, and unite together in condemnation of hatred, bigotry, and violence. We must rediscover the bonds of love and loyalty that bring us together as Americans.

Racism is evil. And those who cause violence in its name are criminals and thugs, including the KKK, neo-Nazis, white supremacists, and other hate groups that are repugnant to everything we hold dear as Americans.

We are a nation founded on the truth that all of us are created equal. We are equal in the eyes of our Creator. We are equal under the law. And we are equal under our Constitution. Those who spread violence in the name of bigotry strike at the very core of America.

Two days ago, a young American woman, Heather Heyer, was tragically killed. Her death fills us with grief, and we send her family our thoughts, our prayers, and our love.

We also mourn the two Virginia state troopers who died in service to their community, their commonwealth, and their country. Troopers Jay Cullen and Burke Bates exemplify the very best of America, and our hearts go out to their families, their friends, and every member of American law enforcement.

These three fallen Americans embody the goodness and decency of our nation. In times such as these, America has always shown its true character: responding to hate with love, division with unity, and violence with an unwavering resolve for justice.

As a candidate, I promised to restore law and order to our country, and our federal law enforcement agencies are following through on that pledge. We will spare no resource in fighting so that every American child can grow up free from violence and fear. We will defend and protect the sacred rights of all Americans, and we will work together so that every citizen in this blessed land is free to follow their dreams in their hearts, and to express the love and joy in their souls.

Thank you. God bless you. And God bless America. Thank you very much.

Hillary Clinton Strongly Denounces White Supremacists’ Violence In Charlottesville

After the violent turmoil erupted at the nazi rally today in Charlottesville, Virginia, Hillary Clinton issued this statement via Twitter:

My heart is in Charlottesville today, and with everyone made to feel unsafe in their country. But the incitement of hatred that got us here is as real and condemnable as the white supremacists in our streets. Every minute we allow this to persist through tacit encouragement or inaction is a disgrace, & corrosive to our values. Now is the time for leaders to be strong in their words & deliberate in their actions. We will not step backward. If this is not who we are as Americans, let’s prove it.

At least someone knows what clear leadership looks like.

Trump On Charlottesville Violence: “Bigotry And Violence On Both Sides”

In the aftermath of the white supremacist rally which turned to deadly violence in Charlottesville, Virginia, Donald Trump issued a statement denouncing the “hatred, bigotry and violence on many sides.”

It was the nazis’ rally that turned violent. Not peace-loving citizens who made today so ugly in Charlottesville.

“We condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry and violence on many sides. It’s been going on a long time in our country. Not Donald Trump, not Barack Obama. It’s been going on for a long, long time.”

You’ll note that “Not Donald Trump.” He made a point to sidestep his own responsibility for stoking these racial flames the past two years.

This hurts my heart as an American. It honest to God hurts that our president can’t boldly stand up to this white supremacist hate.

Watch below.

Virginia Governor Declares State Of Emergency As Nazi Rally Escalates To Violence

Just terrible.

A planned protest by “white nationalists” (read that “white supremacists/Nazis”) in Virginia was abandoned on Saturday after the level of violence escalated to such a heated level the governor had  to declare a state of emergency as law enforcement officers cleared the area.

From the New York Times:

The demonstration, which both organizers and critics had said was the largest gathering of white nationalists in recent years, turned violent almost immediately and left several people injured.

The turmoil began with a march Friday night and escalated Saturday morning as hundreds of white nationalists gathered. Waving Confederate flags, chanting Nazi-era slogans, wearing helmets and carrying shields, they converged on a statue of Robert E. Lee in the city’s Emancipation Park and began chanting phrases like “You will not replace us,” and “Jew will not replace us.”

Hundreds of counter-protesters quickly surrounded the crowd, chanting and carrying their own signs.

By 11 a.m., the scene had exploded into taunting, shoving and outright brawling. Barricades encircling the park and separating the two sides began to come down, and police temporarily retreated. People were seen clubbing one another in the streets, and pepper spray filled the air.

Police cleared the area before noon, and the Virginia National Guard arrived as officers began arresting some who remained for unlawful assembly. But fears lingered that the altercation would start again nearby, even as politicians, including Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe, a Democrat, and House Speaker Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, a Republican, condemned the violence.

The protest, billed as a “Unite the Right” rally, was the culmination of a year and a half of debate in Charlottesville over the fate of the Lee statue. A movement to remove it began when an African-American high school student here started a petition. The City Council voted 3 to 2 in April to sell it, but a judge issued an injunction temporarily stopping the move.

The city had been bracing for a sea of alt-right demonstrators, and on Friday night, hundreds of them, carrying lit torches, marched on the picturesque grounds of the University of Virginia, founded in 1819 by Thomas Jefferson. The group included prominent white nationalist figures like Richard Spencer and David Duke, a former imperial wizard of the Ku Klux Klan.

Apparently, the white supremacists tried to spin Trump’s first tweet into a message that condemned the counter-protesters. Trump then issued a second tweet regarding the nazi rally:

At one point, a car plowed through a group of counter-protesters.

White Nationalists March On University Of Virginia

(image via Twitter)

If you’re just waking up and missed it, torch wielding white nationalists marched on a church in Charlottesville VA last night.

From the New York Times:

A month after a Ku Klux Klan rally here ended with the police using tear gas on protesters, Charlottesville is bracing for a weekend of white nationalist demonstrations and counterprotests, and suddenly this tranquil college town feels like a city under siege.

Thousands of people — many from out of town — are expected to descend on the city to either protest or participate in a “Unite the Right” rally on Saturday convened by white nationalists who oppose a plan to remove a statue of Robert E. Lee, the Confederate general, from a city park.

“People are angry, they’re scared, they’re hurt, they’re confused,” said the Rev. Seth Wispelwey of the local United Church of Christ. “White supremacists rallying in our town is an act of violence.”

Late Friday night, several hundred torch-bearing men and women marched on the main quadrangle of the University of Virginia’s grounds, shouting, “You will not replace us,” and “Jew will not replace us.” They walked around the Rotunda, the university’s signature building, and to a statue of Thomas Jefferson, where a group of counterprotesters were gathered, and a brawl ensued. At least one person was led away in handcuffs by the police.

In a Facebook post, Charlottesville’s mayor, Mike Signer, called it a “cowardly parade of hatred, bigotry, racism, and intolerance.”

“I am beyond disgusted by this unsanctioned and despicable display of visual intimidation on a college campus,” he added.

Arizona: Trump/Nazi Billboard Draws Death Threats For Artist

From The Arizona Republic:

Artist Karen Fiorito knew backlash was bound to come. And it has.

Commissioned by a downtown Phoenix art gallery in January to create a billboard art piece that would comment on President Donald Trump’s administration, Fiorito said what she had in mind was going to stir up a controversy.

“Billboards are perfect because you don’t have to go to a gallery to see it,” she said. “You’re creating a dialogue with the public. You’re reaching people you’d never reach with your artwork.”

The completed billboard, now looming over Grand Avenue and Taylor Street, went up in downtown Phoenix on Friday afternoon amid the Art Detour event. Plastered on one side is a depiction of Trump’s face staring down. The red background is mingled with mushroom-cloud explosions and dollar signs in typography imitating Nazi swastikas.

Stories on the billboard went viral Friday night. The Arizona State University alumnus said she and her husband, who don’t currently live in Arizona, began receiving threats Saturday morning.

“I’ve been called a communist, a Satan worshiper,” she said. “I’ve been told I’m a ‘very, very sick person.’ I’m not sure what that means. I haven’t been answering the phone. My husband has because he’s not afraid to talk to anyone, but he told me he received a couple death threats this morning. … He said, ‘They were coming to get us with their boys.’ “