Trump denounces bigotry, anti-Semitism during visit to African-American museum

"This tour was a meaningful reminder of why we have to fight bigotry, intolerance and hatred in all of its very ugly forms," the president said.
By Ed Adamczyk Contact the Author   |   Feb. 21, 2017 at 11:02 AM
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Feb. 21 (UPI) -- President Donald Trump denounced bigotry and racism on Tuesday, and decried recent threats against Jewish community centers across the country during a visit to the National Museum of African American History and Culture.

Speaking during his first visit to the museum as president, Trump said, "every day of my presidency I pledge to do everything I can to continue that promise of freedom for African-Americans and for every American."

The president called his museum tour "a meaningful reminder of why we have to fight bigotry and hatred and intolerance" -- and made reference to recent hoax bomb threats at U.S. Jewish centers and vandalism at a Jewish cemetery.

"This tour was a meaningful reminder of why we have to fight bigotry, intolerance and hatred in all of its very ugly forms," he said. "The anti-Semitic threats targeting our Jewish community and community centers are horrible and are painful and a very sad reminder of the work that still must be done to root out hate and prejudice and evil."

At least 11 bomb threats were called in to Jewish community centers in seven states on Monday, the fourth time this year that hoax calls were received by multiple centers. Each center was evacuated and searched.

A Jewish cemetery in Missouri was also vandalized Monday, with more than 100 headstones overturned or damaged in what officials said could be considered a hate crime.

Trump's comments Tuesday followed a request by the Anti-Defamation League for his administration to take action regarding threats to the Jewish community centers.

At a press conference last week, Trump deflected a question about the incidents to defend himself against suggestions that he personally holds anti-Semitic feelings. Tuesday, when asked whether he denounces anti-Semitism "once and for all," Trump responded, "Oh, of course. And I do it, whenever I get a chance, I do it."

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