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COLUMN: How do you have that difficult conversation with someone you once admired?


I need some help and don’t know what to do. 

I’m having trouble with someone, because I think this person is racist.

Let me explain. I’m like 99.99 percent sure they’re a racist.

When I was first getting to know him, he said something like, “Laziness is a trait in blacks. It really is, I believe that. It’s not anything they can control.”

I was horrified when I heard it. I just brushed it off. He only said it once. I was naïve to think it wasn’t a problem.

Now he’s making comments like this more frequently.

Recently, he said horrible things about immigrants: how he doesn’t want them here, how Mexicans should all be deported because they are criminals. 

It shocked me. I thought he was just exaggerating how he felt. 

It was when he started talking about Muslims in derogatory ways that, I became more concerned. He says they’re dangerous, they’re terrorists and they too need to be kept out.

Anytime there’s a terrorist attack, he jumps to conclusions, stating how it was certainly a Muslim. Then he makes some statement about how they shouldn’t be allowed in America.

On Facebook and Twitter, he’s always talking about it. I understand this might be common conservative conversation but it’s really weird how vocal he is about it.

He even retweets and likes posts by people, who after a simple search of their profiles you could they are racists and bigots.

One person he retweeted was @WhiteGenocideTM. The account claims “Hitler SAVED Europe.” How couldn’t he have a problem retweeting someone like that?

He had to read that name and press send.

It’s not just me, other people noticed it too. They tried to talk to him about it, but he shrugged it off as if nothing happened.

It’s things like this that make me think he’s a racist and should stop paying attention to him.

Unfortunately, that’s not the only things he’s said.

Recently, he has been talking about Antifa and white supremacists as if they are equal. He argues that because both groups are violent, neither is worse than the other. Like after Charlottesville, he said that the both sides were to blame for the violence and the death of Heather Heyer. 

But what really shocked me was he didn’t even mention the neo-Nazis and racists as being a problem, until people started to call him out.

After that, conversations with him shifted to how taking down Confederate statues is an attempt to take away “our culture”. It’s hard not to think that the culture he’s talking about is white. 

I know you are thinking the same thing I am, “He’s a racist. Why are you wasting your time?”

All those things were said and done by President Donald J. Trump.