CNN has made no attempt to retract or modify a Wednesday report that calls all supporters of President Donald Trump â€œwhite supremacists by default.â€
TheÂ reportÂ stakes its weighty claims about the moral character of Trump supporters on the word of â€œactivists, historians and victims of extremism,â€ who argue that â€œordinary peopleâ€ have empowered white supremacists.Â (RELATED:Â CNN: Everyone Who Voted For Trump Is A â€˜White Supremacist By Defaultâ€™)
â€œItâ€™s easy to focus on the angry white men in paramilitary gear who looked like they were mobilizing for a race war in the Virginia college town,â€ the report reads. â€œBut itâ€™s the ordinary people â€” the voters who elected a reality TV star with a record of making racially insensitive comments, the people who move out of the neighborhood when people of color move in, the family members who ignore a relativeâ€™s anti-Semitism â€” who give these type of men room to operate.â€
The Daily Caller News Foundation received no response after contacting multiple CNN public relations employees, politics editors and the writer who authored the report, to inquire as to whether the network stands by the story.
Much of the report rests on the extensive conclusions drawn by Fordham University professor and political activist Mark Naison, who wasted no time in issuing a stinging indictment of the character of all Trump supporters.
â€œYou have to have millions of people who are willing to be bystanders, who push aside evidence of racism, Islamophobia or sexism. You canâ€™t have one without the other,â€ Naison says. â€œWe are a country with a few million passionate white supremacists â€” and tens of millions of white supremacists by default,â€ Naison told CNN.
The report neatly categorizes Trump supporters into four separate categories based on the degree of their complicity in enabling white supremacy.
One such category is labeled the â€œdown low segregationists,â€ who according to â€œNaison and others,â€ claim to be against segregation but actively segregate themselves by moving when their neighborhood becomes diverse.
Then there is the â€œyes, butâ€ group who acknowledge that racism is a problem but add a qualifier to the concession â€œto diminish the sincerity of what [they] just said.â€ The report then suggests moral equivalency between modern critics of the Black Lives Matter movement and the moderates identified in Rev. Martin Luther Kingâ€™s â€œLetter From Birmingham Jailâ€ as the central obstacle to desegregation.
â€œWhen a police officer shoots an unarmed black person, even then itâ€™s controversial to say racism is a factor,â€ Erik Love, a sociologist at Dickinson College, told CNN. â€œWe say, â€˜Why donâ€™t we talk about these other issues. What about the crime rate, what police officers need to protect themselves.â€™ And suddenly weâ€™re not talking about race anymore.â€
Next come â€œthose who choose chaosâ€ who voted for Trump primarily for the entertainment value but now condemn his actions, including his response to the violence in Charlottesville.
â€œThis is who he is, this is what he does,â€ Emory University African-American studies professor Carol Anderson told CNN. â€œâ€˜Mexicans are rapists and criminals.â€™ Thatâ€™s what he said in his first speech. Their complicity comes in the form of self-denial instead of owning it,â€ Anderson said in reference to the Trump supporters who fall into the â€œthose who choose chaosâ€ category.
Finally comes â€œthose who look the other way,â€ a label that applies to Trump voters who â€œdonâ€™t speak upâ€ in opposition to hateful ideology.
â€œIf you donâ€™t speak up when this sort of ideology is being promoted at the highest level, you end up being complicit in the actions taken by its more extreme adherents,â€ Naison says. â€œOnce the demons are unleashed, youâ€™ve become a co-conspirator.â€
Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contactÂ [email protected].