Tuesday was not a good day for Eric Trump. He started the day defending the Trump Organization profiting off his father’s election with its proposed “American Idea” hotels in red states like Mississippi. Then Forbes broke the story that he’d skimmed more than $1 million from fundraisers that were supposed to benefit St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in their entirety.
So how did the young Trump end the day? He went on Hannity for a vent session in which he described all of his father’s critics as subhuman.
“I’ve never seen hatred like this,” Trump said. “To me, they’re not even people. It’s so, so sad. I mean, morality’s just gone. Morals have flown at the window. We deserve so much better than this as a country.”
The interview didn’t get better from there. Sean Hannity didn’t ask Eric Trump a single question about his recent controversies. Instead, the two fumed about how mean the president’s detractors are for constantly criticizing Trump, his family, his staff, and his supporters.
But Eric Trump’s dehumanizing comments in the face of criticism directly echo his father’s rhetoric and the hate and violence that it has propagated — particularly since the election. Hate crimes continue to go underreported, and ThinkProgress documented the massive spike in violence and harassment that has targeted, in particular, people of color, LGBTQ people, immigrants, and religious minorities. On Tuesday, BuzzFeed published a massive exposé about how Trump’s rhetoric — and even just his name — translated literally into bullying across the country, particularly of students of color and from immigrant families.
Rhetoric used to justify violence against others perhaps better fits the definition of “hatred” than news coverage about potentially illegal behavior.