Stephen Colbert called it the “seventh circle of hell.” Jimmy Kimmel called for President Donald Trump’s immediate removal from office. And on Wednesday evening, Late Night host Seth Meyers offered his unvarnished opinion on Trump’s off-the-rails Charlottesville press conference during his latest edition of “A Closer Look.”
To paraphrase the late NFL coach Dennis Green, “Donald Trump is who we thought he was.”
During the Tuesday presser—an event that was supposed to be dedicated to infrastructure but instead featured the president’s angry, passionate defense of the neo-Nazis who marched on (and incited violence in) Charlottesville—Trump stated:
“You had many people in that group other than neo-Nazis and white nationalists, OK? And the press has treated them absolutely unfairly,” he said, later adding, “You had some very bad people in that group, but you also had people that were very fine people—on both sides.”
Meyers could not believe what he was hearing. “No! There are no fine people marching with Nazis and white supremacists,” he said. “Nobody gets accidentally caught up in a white supremacist rally. It just doesn’t happen—except for that one time on Seinfeld.”
The late-night host played a video clip featuring hundreds of tiki torch-wielding Charlottesville white supremacists chanting: “Jews will not replace us” and “blood and soil.”
Now, seeing as there are fewer than 7 million Jews in America (out of 327 million people), it seems more than a bit silly for those who call themselves the “master race” to be afraid of such a small minority. As far as “blood and soil” goes, well, it’s an integral part of Nazi ideology that placed undue emphasis on racial stock and territorial history.
But look, according to Trump, the Charlottesville neo-Nazis “had a permit” and “the other group didn’t have a permit,” so that somehow grants them the moral high ground.
“Oh, the Nazis had a permit? Well, fuck me, I’m sorry! I had no idea!” exclaimed Meyers. “Also, of course they had a permit—they’re Nazis. Nazis’ main thing is having your papers. That’s like the one thing they’re good at.”
Meyers concluded by posing the question on the minds of many Americans:
“So, is Donald Trump a racist? I’ll let you decide yes for yourself. But Trump isn’t just a racist, he’s also a narcissist. He defends the white nationalist movement both because he’s racist and because they show up and chant his name and show him love, and his brain disease makes it impossible for him to denounce anyone who supports him. What Tuesday showed is that Donald Trump will never change. He showed us again who he really is: a lying racist who’s desperate for praise.”