Trump's less than four-minute address was full of both racism and delusion. The president started his speech by praising known black leaders. He listed Sojourner Truth, Martin Luther King Jr. and Fredrick Douglass and more. Trump praised them as heroes, sharing a quote from Muhammad Ali printed on a wall in the museum. "I shook up the world," it reads.
Trump's nod to Ali is among the most telling and ironic parts of this weekly address. On Friday, border agents detained the legendary athlete's son, Muhammad Ali Jr. According to The Guardian, agents questioned the origin of his name and his religious affiliation. After revealing that he's Muslim, agents questioned Ali Jr.'s place of birth. He's a U.S. citizen who was born in Philadelphia and was flying to Fort Lauderdale, Florida, from Jamaica. The experience mirrors those of other affected travelers.
Quoting the elder Muhammad Ali is further proof of exactly how out of touch Trump is with reality. The speech was, of course, recorded before news broke but speaks volumes. Trump has said time and time again that his order — which bans citizens of seven majority Muslim countries from entering the United States — is not meant to target Muslims. Many have come forward, detailing the profiling they experienced in various airports. They share experiences akin to Ali Jr.'s. Trump himself has contradicted this idea. On Jan. 27 he assured Americans that Christian refugees would get priority when seeking asylum.
Trump and his cabinet are currently rewriting their travel ban after having the first overturned by a federal court. The second draft is not out yet, though a Feb. 21 report from CNN claims it's almost complete. It's unclear how Trump and his cabinet plan to change their original ban to avoid having it shot down again.