With the shocking events of the 2016 presidential election now behind the United States, the people of the country are trying to reconcile what happened with what is going to happen in the future. There have been hundreds of massive protests against President-elect Trump, and it seems as if these protestors are fearful of things that not only haven’t happened, but may very well not happen at all. They’ve built Trump up in their heads to be a horrifying figurehead, and while he isn’t ideal, he also isn’t the anti-Christ. However, the new President-elect has made some slightly disturbing choices in his first days after the contentious election.
Trump has recently selected his new Chief of Staff, and he also made headlines by announcing his pick for a senior advisory position in the White House. Steve Bannon was once an executive in charge of Breitbart News, a famously alt-right conservative network of ‘news’ websites. He will now sit at Trump’s side and whisper in his ear about every decision the new President will make. Republicans who fought against Trump hoped that he would be smart enough to surround himself with moderates who are smarter than he, in the hopes of actually getting things done. Instead, Trump immediately hired one of the biggest conservative propagandists in the world to be his primary consigliere.
While the appointment of Bannon is an unwelcome surprise, Trump’s choice for Chief of Staff is a bit more grounded. Reince Priebus was once the Republican National Committee Chairman, and now he will serve in the highest White House staff position. Priebus isn’t as much of a vitriolic figure as Bannon, so his appointment has gone mostly unnoticed by the wailing masses decrying the appointment of a Goldmas Sachs alum who also happens to be a white nationalist and possibly a white supremacist.
However, just because there hasn’t been as much public outcry regarding Priebus’ appointment to Chief of Staff, that doesn’t mean Priebus is a saint who will work against the powerful current that is Trump. Instead, it is likely Priebus will simply be a pawn for Trump, and his history is enough to showcase his hidden hatred for those he considers liberals or non-conservatives.
A video recently uncovered by the Democratic Coalition features some of Priebus’ inner hatred toward the 44th President of the United States, Barack Obama. The video was taken from an MSNBC program featuring Keith Olberman, and in the clip Priebus does something nearly unthinkable. While discussing Osama Bin Laden, Priebus accidentally refers to the hated terrorist as Obama. While this seemingly innocent gaff could arguably have been accidental, it seems unlikely that such a Freudian slip would occur again if it simply were an innocent mistake.
Priebus not only doesn’t correct himself when he makes his mistake, but he actually makes it twice more with apparent vigor. Either he had no idea that Obama and Osama were two different people, or he secretly harbors a hatred for Obama that translated to a repeated verbal mistake. It would be nearly impossible for someone with any knowledge or respect for Barack Obama to make such a horrible mistake, yet the new White House Chief of Staff made the mistake three times in just as many minutes. That alone should give conservatives something to think about when they spout their denial of systemic racism.
The fact that Trump has started surrounding himself with people exactly like those the massive number of protestors feared he would is a sign that his presidency could be much worse than anticipated. Trump has only appointed those who have worked hard to keep the country divided along gender, race, and political lines. Trump keeps promising unity within the people, yet his method for accomplishing that goal is getting murkier by the day.