You could see it coming Monday, after President Trump dutifully read off a script in which he condemned white nationalist racists and American neo-Nazis for their roles in the Charlottesville violence. When reviews of his sullen performance weren’t overwhelmingly positive, he started fuming:
By Tuesday afternoon, he had built up a considerable head of steam that had to be vented. The opportunity came at a press event that was supposed to be about a still-nonexistent infrastructure bill, but that Trump quickly turned into a circus again revolving around Charlottesville.
The crux of Trump’s statement Tuesday was his claim that both sides were equally guilty, and that “you had some very fine people on both sides.”
Just to make sure that there is no confusion, one “side” comprised neo-Nazis and white supremacists, preaching genocide and racial purity and hoping to make a point about their numbers, strength and willingness to engage in battle. On the other side were those who opposed them.
A person on one side — the neo-Nazi side — drove his car at high speed into a crowd of counterprotestors, killing one and injuring 19. Trump nonetheless believes that there were some very fine people on that side, probably because his definition of a very fine person is someone who supports him, which they do.
If you haven’t watched the following, you have a civic duty as an American to do so. Parts of it are difficult to endure. Do it anyway. There are some very fine people interviewed. None of them were waving Nazi flags or preaching genocide or race war.