Luke Visconti is the founder and CEO of DiversityInc. Although the title of his column is meant to be humorous, the issues he addresses and the answers he gives to questions are serious — and based on his 17 years of experience publishing DiversityInc. Click here to send your own question to Luke.


"I could stand in the middle of 5th Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn't lose voters." — Donald J. Trump

He has been proven right. Trump's strategy of cultivating a sense of victimhood for lower-middle-class white people by fueling hate in other groups started (in the public consciousness) with his denying President Obama's citizenship. He's preying on a distinct group of Americans.

The future of the white middle-class, defined as white people making a middle-class living doing semiskilled or unskilled labor, is bleak. Life expectancy is declining, attributed to "drinking, drugs and suicide."

The president tapped into this despair by creating a sense of victimhood with this failing demographic. They're victims — of that Black president, of environmental regulations, of political correctness, of hordes of brown people running across the border unchecked, of Muslim "extremism." But he (Steve Bannon) did it courting neo-Nazis and white supremacists — you can see it if you look for the pattern. 

All within the past month:

- Just a few days before DeVos arrived at Bethune Cookman, President Trump issued a statement that he thought federal funding for HBCUs was unconstitutional. DeVos got the reception she deserved, and white people were able to cluck and finger wag at the "savage" Black people. Read her speech — it feeds directly into the false Trump description of Black communities as being in the "worst shape ever."

- Neo-Nazi Richard Spencer's torch-lit protests against tearing down the Confederate monuments in Virginia are oddly timed with Jeff "Bull Connor" Sessions announcing that the failed war on drugs would be amped up.

- The president asked "... Why was there the Civil War? Why could that one not have been worked out?" Neo-Nazis and neo-Confederates have historically focused on that question because the answer is that if the North had simply allowed slavery to continue in the slave states, the Civil War could have been avoided. White supremacists preach that white people should not have had to kill other white people for the benefit of Black enslaved people. David Duke made several tweets supporting Trump's comments.

Longer term, the pattern is very clear.

The president uses the term "America First," which was coined by Charles Lindbergh — American aviator and virulent Nazi supporter before WWII. The original Nazi use of "America First" origins are not known by most Americans, but every current day neo-Nazi knows it.

The president took a long time to disavow the endorsement of David Duke. What kind of person does David Duke endorse?

The president and people in his campaign retweeted neo-Nazi tweet several times.

The president did not mention Jews in his Holocaust Memorial Week statement. Hardly an oversight; his son-in-law is Jewish.

If you were waiting for more people to react critically to the absolute chaos we have been seeing, all you have to do is switch from CNN to Fox during the next crisis (that will pop up in five or 10 minutes). Trump's 35 percent support base watches a very different news than the other 65 percent. Giving up this peculiar worldview would mean giving up victimhood — it's not going to happen.

Read more news @ DiversityInc.com

Trump Rallies Base With Coordinated Communications Plan

From dining at Mexican restaurants to wearing clothing with messages, the Trump administration is leveraging hateful communications for political success.

By Sheryl Estrada and Luke Visconti

Despite the backlash against the Trump administration's "zero tolerance" policy regarding immigrants, President Trump boosted his approval ratings among Republicans to 90 percent, higher than Ronald Reagan at this point in his presidency.

The rise in Trump support "suggests a level of unity among Republicans that could help mitigate Mr. Trump's low overall approval ratings and aid his party's chances of keeping control of the House of Representatives in November," The New York Times reported on Saturday.

The number of people identifying as Republican since 2016 has dropped and the Democrats have an 8 percentage point advantage, up slightly from when they won the popular vote by 3 million. Trump's approval rating amongst non-Republicans is at 15 percent, lower than any other president in recent history, including George W. Bush.

The key for the November congressional elections is going to be voter turn out – and it appears that the Republicans have a decisive advantage after last week's apparently coordinated hate communications campaign.

Immigrants Will 'Infest' America

After backlash from politicians and the general public, Trump signed an executive order on Wednesday saying immigrant families will no longer be separated at the U.S.-Mexico border. The separation was a result of the "zero tolerance" policy.

On Tuesday, he said immigrants would infest America:

I Really Don't Care, Do You?

On Thursday, First Lady Melania Trump made an unexpected trip to Texas to visit a shelter for immigrant children. She wore a short trench coat with a message written on the back: "I Really Don't Care, Do U?"

Melania Trump wore the jacket boarding the plane at Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland and when she returned.

Social media users posted about the irony of what the first lady chose to wear to visit kids separated from their families.

East Wing communications director Stephanie Grisham said there was "no hidden message" behind the jacket.

Meanwhile, President Trump tweeted that the statement was against the "fake news media":

Dining at Mexican Restaurants

In the middle of a crisis at the U.S.-Mexico border, Stephen Miller — the senior White House adviser who orchestrated the "zero-tolerance" policy — had dinner on June 17 at Espita Mezcaleria in Washington, D.C.

"Hey look guys, whoever thought we'd be in a restaurant with a real-life fascist begging [for] money for new cages?" a customer at the restaurant said to Miller, according to The New York Post.

Miller didn't respond and left quickly, a witness said.

Homeland Security Trump Minister Kirstjen Nielsen then went to another Mexican restaurant in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday for dinner.

A group called the Metro DC Democratic Socialists of America approached Nielsen in MXDC Cocina Mexicana.

"If kids don't eat in peace, you don't eat in peace!" protesters chanted. They also shouted, "Shame!"

"Have you listened to it? Have you heard the babies crying? Do you hear them crying?" activists asked, regarding a tape leaked earlier in the week of young children taken at the border crying.

"No borders, no walls, sanctuary for all," they said.

Dining at Red Hen

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders took an almost 200-mile drive from the White House to rural Virginia on Friday night to eat at a tiny, 26-seat restaurant in Lexington, where residents overwhelmingly voted against Trump in the 2016 presidential election, despite the rest of the county voting for him.

Huckabee was at the Red Hen with "her husband, three or four men and women of roughly similar ages, and an older couple," according to The Washington Post.

The chef contacted the co-owner, Stephanie Wilkinson, to let her know Huckabee was present and that the staff was concerned.

When Wilkinson arrived, she asked her employees if they'd like Huckabee to leave and they agreed.

Many of her gay employees were upset by Sanders' defense for the administration's ban on transgender service members and her praise of a Supreme Court ruling that sided with an anti-gay baker.

And earlier in the week, she defended the administration separating migrants from their children at the southern border.

Wilkinson asked Sanders to leave the establishment.

On Saturday morning, Sanders used her official press secretary account to tweet about being asked to leave because she works in the Trump administration:

Bootlickers Continue Their Synchronized Licking

Politics trump ethics for so-called "religious" so-called "leaders." Children screwed over.

Evangelist Franklin Graham, son of the late Billy Graham, might be disturbed by the images and audio of children crying after being separated from their parents after they are detained crossing the U.S. border. However, because Graham has been among President Trump's strongest supporters, he's not blaming the current administration.

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Trump Caves, Signs Executive Order to Stop His Border Policy, No Details

Tries to blame Obama, Democrats, Congress as he caves in to human decency.

REUTERS

UPDATED June 20, 2018 at 3:36 p.m.

Trump signs executive order to keep families together at border, says 'zero-tolerance' prosecution policy will continue.

The New York Times reports that the new executive order seeks to modify that existing consent decree in order to keep parents and children together in detention. However, Amnesty International says that those detentions could now be indefinite.

"Make no mistake—this executive order is a betrayal of families fleeing violence and persecution," Denise Bell, refugee and migrant rights researcher at Amnesty International USA said in a statement.

"Mothers, fathers, and children must not be held behind bars for prolonged periods for seeking safety. Not only does imprisoning children go against our country's shared values of dignity and equality, but it is also unlawful and threatens to permanently stain the U.S. human rights record."

ORIGINAL STORY

During an early afternoon meeting on Wednesday with members of Congress at the White House, President Donald Trump reportedly was going to announce an end to a major crisis in which migrant families are being separated after they are detained crossing the U.S. border.

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REUTERS

U.S. Attorney General Jefferson Beauregard Sessions III may lose his job as Sunday school teacher as he faces expulsion by his own church's people for his enforcement of the Trump administration's "zero tolerance" immigration policy.

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Video: Rep. Cummings Says What Every Non-Bigoted American Thinks About Trump's 'Zero Tolerance' Policy

"We will not keep kids in internment camps," declared Cummings."This is the United States of America."

Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) expressed what compassionate, non-bigoted Americans feels about the Trump administration's "zero tolerance" policy on immigration — "We are better than that."

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REUTERS

Steve Bannon, former White House chief strategist, said that slain civil rights icon Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. would be "proud" of what President Donald Trump has done for Blacks and Latinos in the U.S.

Bannon was the CEO of Trump's presidential campaign. Trump gained supporters by calling Mexicans rapists, committing to building a wall between Mexico and the U.S., allowing Black people to be physically assaulted at his rallies and lightly disavowing the support of white supremacists.

"Martin Luther King ... he would be proud of what Donald Trump has done for [the] Black and Hispanic working class, okay?" Bannon said on "This Week" Sunday.

On Sunday, King's daughter, Bernice King, CEO of The King Center, re-tweeted a post from The Washington Post reporter Eugene Scott who referenced a similar claim Bannon had made previously. She included a response, simply stating: “Absolutely not."

In May, King tweeted:

Bannon said in March at an event with far-right French politicians that they should "wear" accusations of racism "as a badge of honor."

Let them call you racist. Let them call you xenophobes," he said. “Let them call you nativists. Wear it as a badge of honor. Because every day, we get stronger and they get weaker."

Bannon said on Sunday that he was “talking specifically about Donald Trump and his policies."

“His economic nationalism doesn't care about your race, your religion, your gender, your sexual preference," he said.

The Trump administration's “zero tolerance" immigration policy is currently separating children of undocumented immigrants from their mothers and fathers.

King tweeted on Sunday:

White Trucker Drops N-word, Gets Fired and Loses Unemployment

Claims discrimination by employer for not firing other racists.

FACEBOOK

Stephen L. Kraft was denied unemployment benefits on Wednesday by a three-judge Commonwealth Court panel in Pennsylvania because he used the N-word so much at work that two judges saw it as willful misconduct.

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