Alveda King, the niece of iconic Civil Rights activist Dr Martin Luther King Jr., has praised U.S. President Donald Trump, saying that claims by Democrats and activists that he is racist are erroneous.
King made this known when she appeared for an interview on Fox & Friends on Tuesday to discuss a meeting she and other African American pastors recently had with Trump at the White House and to comment on the president’s recent attacks on Democratic Representative Elijah Cummings and his city, Baltimore.
Trump, on Saturday, hit hard at Cummings, who represents Maryland’s 7th District which includes more than half of Baltimore. Trump argued that the representative’s city is a place where “No human being would want to live.”
“Cumming District is a disgusting, rat and rodent-infested mess. If he spent more time in Baltimore, maybe he could help clean up this very dangerous & filthy place,” Trump wrote.
Trump’s comments did not go down well with many Democratic lawmakers, activists and pundits, who argued that the president’s remarks were another form of racist attacks directed at the area’s black representative.
But King thinks otherwise.
“All of that news is absolutely fake… he cares about all Americans,” King said on Tuesday’s show after she had watched videos of analysts and politicians criticizing Trump for his comment.
“You know, we all believe the same. That’s something the president has said, one race, one human race,” King, who once served as a representative in Georgia’s State House, said.
“So, he’s not a racist, absolutely is not,” she said, “and the programs that he has moved forward, the higher job market is helping African Americans. The criminal justice reform, helping African Americans.”
“You look at his [Cummings’] community and you see individuals suffering, you see the community suffering and families suffering,” she was quoted by Newsweek.
King, alongside other members of the conservative Coalition of African American Pastors, met with Trump on Monday where they reportedly defended the president against claims that he is a racist.
“The president is concerned about the whole nation. About everybody in the nation,” King told reporters after the closed door-meeting.
“So I want us to remember, that we’ve been designed to be brothers and sisters. One member of the human race. Not separate races. The same blood.”
“Well you know, America is troubled. And if we say we’re colour-blind, we need to put on our glasses.”
“We can see. We can see a troubled America, but we can see a blessed America. The employment rates are up in every community, including the black community,” she said. “The Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) under this president are being blessed. The babies in the womb, the sick and poor and elderly are being blessed.”
She added: “We have an opportunity to continue to be blessed, and we have a president’s whose listening. And I was glad to pray with him today. Now that’s it.”
This is not the first time King, who is also an American evangelist and author, has strongly defended Trump. Last year, she described the president as not racist, adding that he was a big fan of her uncle, Martin Luther King, Jr.
At the time, Trump had signed a bill changing the activists’ birthplace in Atlanta, Georgia from a National Historic Site to a National Historic Park.
According to the bill’s sponsor, civil rights leader Rep. John Lewis, D-Ga., “the upgrade and expansion would dramatically boost how the National Park Service maintains and shares the legacy of King to the public”.
While the intentions of the president were called to question – from whether he is trying to change perceptions of him as racist to whether he is a traitor, King came out publicly to defend his action.
In a statement to CBN News, King said the following about the President’s gesture towards her uncle’s legacy:
“I was there on Air Force One, and I was there when the president signed the bill in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr., my uncle, making that historic site here in Atlanta, Georgia, where I live, a national park.
“And so that (the signing of the bill) was not a racist act, and somebody says, ‘Well, he had to sign it”. Well, he didn’t. Presidents veto bills all the time. President Trump was happy to sign that bill.
“And so many times, President Donald John Trump has expressed admiration for Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
“I believe that President Donald John Trump is working very hard to make America great again. And he continues to demonstrate that he wants to do that for all Americans, so the question of racism just doesn’t fit that profile to me.
“So do I believe that President Donald John Trump is a racist? No, I do not. And I celebrate 2018 and believing that Americans will come together and lead the world as an example as one nation under God.”
Born in 1929, Martin Luther King Jr., an American Baptist minister, was the most visible spokesperson and leader in the civil rights movement from 1954 through to 1968.
He used the tactics of nonviolence and civil disobedience to fight for equality and justice. King was an interesting person besides his known roles in social activism which led to his death. Posthumously, King continued to make waves and currently, all the states in the U.S. observe January 15 as the Martin Luther King Jr. Day.