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Trump Defies His Administration’s Health And Safety Procedures With Indoor Campaign Rally  

President Donald Trump spoke to thousands of his supporters in an indoor Nevada venue this Sunday, despite the Governor and his own administration’s numerous health and safety procedures put in place to avoid gatherings of this size. Trump has been hosting a series of outdoor rallies within the past few months in order to keep his campaign going in the midst of a global health crisis, however, this weekend’s most recent event showed just how seriously Trump and his administration are actually handling this pandemic. 

The event was in Henderson, Nevada, inside a facility of Xtreme Manufacturing, and as it was being planned government officials predicted it would be violating the state’s restriction on gatherings of more than 50 people. Trump has already received major backlash for his administration’s mishandling of the pandemic, and as the death toll in the US hits nearly 200,000, an indoor rally of more than 6,000 individuals shows that Trump isn’t exactly listening to his country’s thousands of healthcare providers. 

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This also isn’t the first indoor rally that Trump has hosted during the pandemic that’s led to some major controversy, and even worse, and increase in case numbers. Back in June Trump hosted a rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma, which made headlines for its underwhelming attendance. However, two weeks after that rally the city of Tulsa saw a massive spike in coronavirus cases. The cases were able to be directly linked to the rally after multiple campaign staffers and Secret Service agents tested positive as well. 

About 6,200 individuals attended the rally this past Sunday, and while that number may seem staggering to those of us who have been quarantine, the attendance was actually projected to be much larger; Trump blamed the “low” number of supporters on “radical protesters and intense backlash from the media,” regarding hosting a large gathering in the middle of a pandemic. 

The City of Henderson warned the Xtreme Manufacturing venue ahead of the rally that they would be violating numerous state and nationwide regulations if they chose to host the event. Spokesperson Kathleen Richards recently spoke with the media about the preliminary warnings they tried to issue to get the event cancelled. 

“The City of Henderson has issued a compliance letter and verbal warning to the event organizer that the event planned would be in direct violation of the state’s Covid-19 emergency directives.”

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Large live events must also now be pre-approved by the Nevada Department of Business and Industry, however, the city never received notice that this rally was approved prior to it occuring. This could potentially lead to Xtreme Manufacturing losing their business license. When questioned about this rally before its occurrence, the Trump administration remained relatively general with all their answers. 

They claimed that every attendee would get their temperature checked and would be provided a mask that they would only be encouraged to wear. However, when one checks Xtreme Manufacturing’s website, their Covid-19 restrictions seem even stricter than the state’s: “We have restricted meetings and gatherings to no more than 10 people in large areas, and when possible, to attend meetings by telephone or video conferencing.”

No spokesperson working for the company/venue has offered any sort of explanation regarding the rally yet. However, Nevada Governor Steve Sisolat took to Twitter to blast the president for his irresponsibility regarding this event. 

“Trump’s reckless and selfish actions are putting countless lives in danger here in Nevada. The rally is an insult to every Nevadan who has followed the directives, made sacrifices, and put their neighbors before themselves.”

Other members of Joe Biden’s administration also called out Trump for his lack of plan to fix the pandemic, and lack of acknowledgement that it’s actually as serious as it is. Other locations that previously were planning on hosting Trump rallies in the future have since cancelled due to state limitations on crowd sizes.

Black Lives Matter Paper

Trump Faces Backlash For Scheduling Rally On Juneteenth In Tulsa, Oklahoma

President Donald Trump is planning on restarting his campaign rallies for the November 2020 election, however, he’s already received some major backlash given the context of the entire announcement. Trump’s campaign trail was put to an obvious halt amid the Covid-19 pandemic, which is still very much a public health issue that has infected nearly 2 million Americans and killed more than 112,000 people in the US alone. 

The New York Times reported this week that Trump’s first “rebooted rally” will be taking place on June 19th in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Right away, individuals on social media pointed out that Trump scheduled this rally on Juneteenth; a national holiday meant to celebrate the end of slavery, it’s also referred to as Independence Day for Black Americans. Beyond that, the fact that the rally is taking place in Tulsa, Oklahoma – the same spot that the Tulsa Race Massacre of 1921 that killed over 300 black Americans took place – has many individuals angry with the president’s tone deafness given the current protests against police brutality in light of George Floyd’s murder. 

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The Tulsa Race Massacre occurred almost 100 years ago in Oklahoma in a place referred to at the time as “Black Wall Street.” This area of Tulsa was technically known as the Greenwood District, and was known for its large population of successful black Americans (there were over 300 black-owned businesses in the district). Unfortunately, successful black individuals caused racial tensions to heighten among white individuals living in Tulsa, as they were threatened by that success. 

One day, a 17-year-old white girl named Sarah Page claimed that a 19-year-old black man, Dick Rowland, assaulted her, igniting massive mobs of armed white men to storm Black Wall Street. Rowland was arrested and held in court, where even larger white mobs waited outside for him to be released so that they could lynch him. The next part of the story varies based on who you ask, but basically, a group of black veterans came to the courthouse to try to deescalate the situation, eventually a gun shot was heard and complete chaos broke out, leaving two white men dead, and over 300 black individuals dead and many unaccounted for; even to this day. The newspaper headlines the next day, however, only reported on the white deaths. More than 1,200 houses were destroyed, and now an interstate is paved over the spot where Black Wall Street used to thrive. 

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Many individuals weren’t even aware of this massacre until these protests began, as they don’t teach about it in American schools. It’s ignited an even larger conversation about the type of history that’s taught in our education system, and the many stories/historical events involving black individuals, and POC in general, that have been completely erased from all textbooks. The president’s announcement that this will be where he hosts his first reboot rally has ignited that same frustration induced by lack his of acknowledgment in the protests as well. 

In a statement from Trump’s campaign adviser Katrina Pierson, she defended the decision to host the rally in Tulsa on Juneteenth, stating that: “As part of the party of Lincoln, Republicans are proud of the history of Juneteenth, which is the anniversary of the last reading of the Emancipation Proclamation. Joe Biden spent last Juneteenth raising money at a private fundraiser and defending comments he made celebrating his work with segregationist senators,” Pierson wrote.

Beyond the racial insensitivity that many are calling out Trump for in relation to this Juneteenth rally, many are also calling him out for restarting political rallies while we’re still in the middle of a worldwide health pandemic. This move was likely due to the fact that Trump is already behind Biden in the polls and the fact that Trump has done historically very well among his Oklahoma voters. 

The Centers for Disease Control is still emphasizing that all Americans should avoid mass gatherings at all cost. Oklahoma is one of the 19 states that has recently reported a spike in new Covid-19 cases amid many states reopening weeks ago. Within the past week alone Oklahoma has reported 7,480 new cases and 355 deaths. 

What’s most important is that everyone continues to take this pandemic as seriously as they were in March. Continue to social distance, where a mask in public settings, wash your hands consistently, and stay home unless absolutely necessary.