Wash Post: By
June 21, 2020 at 6:39 p.m. MDT
He referred to the disease caused by the novel coronavirus as the “kung flu.” He called racial justice demonstrators “thugs.” He attacked efforts to take down Confederate statues as an assault on “our heritage.” And in an ominous hypothetical, he described a “very tough hombre” breaking into a young woman’s home while her husband is away.
President Trump has long used his raucous rallies to road test potential campaign themes and attack lines. And while much attention on his Saturday night appearance in Tulsa focused on the sparse turnout for his first rally since the pandemic ended mass gatherings, Trump’s litany of racially offensive stereotypes sent a clear signal about how he plans to try to revive his flagging reelection effort.
Even at a moment of national reckoning over race and racism, Trump demonstrated the extent to which the final four months of the 2020 election will build on the darker themes of a previous campaign notable for its attacks on Hispanic immigrants and Muslims.
“If you want to save your heritage, you want to save that beautiful heritage of ours, we have a great heritage, we’re a great country,” he said to cheers, using a phrase often used to defend Confederate statues and regalia.