Former Massachusetts governor and GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney condemned President Donald Trump’s response to the violence that occurred in Charlottesville in a Friday morning Facebook post.
“Whether he intended to or not, what he communicated caused racists to rejoice, minorities to weep, and the vast heart of America to mourn. His apologists strain to explain that he didn’t mean what we heard. But what we heard is now the reality, and unless it is addressed by the president as such, with unprecedented candor and strength, there may commence an unraveling of our national fabric,” the Facebook post reads.
Trump came under fire Saturday after refusing to exclusively condemn the alt-right for the violence that occurred in Charlottesville, instead pointing out that both the alt-right and the Antifa-aligned counter protestors were to blame. After condemning neo-Nazis and white supremacists by name Monday, Trump doubled down on his initial reaction during a Tuesday press conference in which he again said “both sides” were to blame and further suggested the “alt-left” bore some responsibility for the day’s tragic outcome.
In the Facebook screed, Romney argued Trump’s tepid response diminished “America’s ability to help secure a peaceful and prosperous world.” Romney then expresses concern about the potential corrosive effect Trump’s comments might have on the nation’s youth.
“In homes across the nation, children are asking their parents what this means. Jews, blacks, Hispanics, Muslims are as much a part of America as whites and Protestants. But today they wonder. Where might this lead? To bitterness and tears, or perhaps to anger and violence?”
Romney rejects the idea that there is any equivalence between the actions of the alt-right, neo-Nazi protestors and that of the counter protestors, many of whom were aligned with the far left Antifa (anti-fascist) group that advocates for the use of violence to stifle disagreeable speech.
He admonished the president to “Testify that there is no conceivable comparison or moral equivalency between the Nazis–who brutally murdered millions of Jews and who hundreds of thousands of Americans gave their lives to defeat–and the counter-protestors who were outraged to see fools parading the Nazi flag, Nazi armband and Nazi salute.”
The Charlottesville riots, which left three dead and dozens injured, were the result of violent clashes between alt-right neo-Nazi groups and far left protestors, who also came armed with bats and hurled projectiles at the opposition. (RELATED: Brutal Examples Of Violence That Occurred By Both Sides In Charlottesville [VIDEO])
Romney concludes the post by casting Trump’s future messaging on the events in Charlottesville as “a moment that will define America in the hearts of our children,” urging Trump to speak out again in opposition to white supremacists.
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