The idea of Donald Trump tweeting something incredibly offensive, tacitly false, and possibly illegal is nothing new. Not a day goes by when he’s not posting messages or retweeting things that should have him checked by a mental health professional at best and impeached at worst, potentially both. That’s why the fact that Trump tweeted a video containing a popular symbol of white nationalism this week isn’t at all surprising, though it is incredibly sickening.
As you’re probably aware, Trump loves himself more than anyone else ever could.
In fact, he loves to pat himself on the back at every available opportunity. That’s why, when a video created by @som3thingwicked which highlights Trump’s many “accomplishments” while in office thus far started making the rounds on the social media site this week, the president simply couldn’t resist sharing with his followers.
Thank you for the support as we MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN! pic.twitter.com/qKgwRMSgcf— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 28, 2019
Not only should many of the claims made in the video be filed directly under Trump’s favorite “fake news,” but it also ends with a Trump/Pence campaign slogan featuring the image of a lion. No big deal, right?
Except it is, because it’s an image used by the Lion Guard, a group which works to shut down Trump’s critics online. Not only that, but the Lion Guard has also worked with VDare, an anti-immigration website that “regularly publishes articles by prominent white nationalists, race scientists, and anti-Semites.”
the image at the end of the video Trump tweeted earlier was popular amongst the fascists of Lion Guard and the white supremacists of Vdare in 2016 pic.twitter.com/XBCWoRblvp— Dusty (@DustinGiebel) August 28, 2019
The name of the Lion Guard apparently comes from a quote Trump once tweeted by Benito Mussolini, which said, “Better to live a day as a lion than 100 years as a sheep.” Ironic, then, that a good portion of Trump’s supporters blindly follow his hateful rhetoric without questioning the validity or morality of anything that comes out of his mouth.
It’s worth noting that VDare’s American Twitter account has been shut down, but the Dutch one is still active and former Snopes managing editor Brooke Binkowski noticed something pretty insane when she checked out the latter account: the lion image being used in a 2016 tweet claiming that Trump should form a new “Continental Army.” Yikes.
2019 / 2016 pic.twitter.com/0oWGl0U3DE
— Brooke Binkowski (@brooklynmarie) August 29, 2019
The video’s creator has since spoken out somewhat in defense of his creation in a now-deleted tweet, claiming that he liked the lion and had no idea that it was a symbol of white nationalism.
Not only that, but he pretended to be flummoxed as to why Trump and the MAGA movement is being associated with white supremacy. Some people can’t see the forest for the trees.