News & Politics

Surprise! Donald Trump's Father Was Probably in the Ku Klux Klan

How fitting.

According to a 1927 New York Times article, it seems that the father of billionaire Republican presidential candidate and professional bile-spewer Donald Trump may have had ties to the Ku Klux Klan.

The Times piece, subtitled “Klan Assails Policemen” and recently unearthed by Boing Boing, identifies a man named Fred Trump as among those arrested for participating in a brawl between the cops and the Klan. As Talking Points Memo notes, the Queens borough address listed for the arrested man, “172-24 Devonshire Road, Jamaica,” matches the known lifelong residence of the real estate mogul’s father.

Per theTimes article, which you can read in its entirety here, members of the Klan made an agreement with Police Commissioner Joseph A. Warren not to wear any “symbols of the order” in a parade, then went on to break their promise; they “not only wore gowns, but had hoods over their faces almost completely hiding their identity.” The “near riot” that followed happened when “1,000 Klansmen and 100 policemen staged a free-for-all battle.”

Of course, it could all be one big coincidence that the man fingered in the article shares the name and address of the man who nearly two decades later would sire Donald Trump. But it doesn’t look good from here. The twentysomething Trump from the Times piece was represented by the same counsel as the Klansmen in the article, though he appears to have been released without a fine.

As Boing Boing notes, if Fred Trump – he of the Klan riot – is, indeed, one in the same with The Donald’s father, “it would not be his last tangle with the law over issues concerning minorities”:

A 1979 article, published by Village Voice, reported on a civil rights suit that alleged that the Trumps refused to rent to black home-seekers, and quotes a rental agent who said Fred Trump instructed him not to rent to blacks and to encourage existing black tenants to leave. The case was settled in a 1975 consent degree described as "one of the most far-reaching ever negotiated," but the Justice Department subsequently complained that continuing "racially discriminatory conduct by Trump agents has occurred with such frequency that it has created a substantial impediment to the full enjoyment of equal opportunity.”

I’m not going to repeat all the despicable and racist nonsense Donald Trump has vomited up over the last few months because the Internet can help you find that fairly quickly, but this all seems to makes sense, considering. Would it be a surprise if Donald Trump turned out to be a guy who not only inherited a fortune, but the same racist attitudes, from his father? And that he would now be garnering kudos from white supremacist David Duke, having white nationalists consider naming their lily-white strongholds after him, or holding rallies in 2015 where supporters shout “White power”? If anything, from the latest look of things, Donald Trump’s father would be endlessly proud of his son.

In the meantime, the Trump campaign has not yet responded to media requests from either Boing Boing or Talking Points Memo.

Kali Holloway is a senior writer and the associate editor of media and culture at AlterNet.

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