‘Racist’ tweets? News media grapple with how to label Trump’s latest attacks

‘Racist’ tweets? News media grapple with how to label Trump’s latest attacks

[Ed. – Actually, what the media are grappling with is the bandying about of a term that is so overused — and misued — that it is losing its meaning. In the case in question, race wasn’t a factor at all.]

When is it time to call a statement “racist,” and when is it time to let others characterize it that way?

News organizations wrestled with that question Sunday and Monday after President Trump tweeted a series of statements aimed at four members of Congress, all women of color. Trump’s comments — “Why don’t they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came” — drew a thunderously negative reaction, with many people, especially Democrats, calling the tweets straight-up racist.

But not everyone in the mainstream media was so direct.

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Reflecting a reluctance to use an incendiary term to describe Trump’s motives and behavior, some tiptoed around the word in their initial reports. Others stepped closer to the line, relying on phrases best described as “racist-adjacent,” such as “racially loaded,” “racially tinged” and “racially charged.”

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