argument top image

Will Donald Trump or Joe Biden be better for race relations?
Back to question

Donald Trump does not want to improve race relations

Donald Trump is unwilling to address the causes of racial tensions and has taken steps to ban anti-racism training that raises awareness of white privilege and systemic racism. Following the Black Lives Matter protests, these ideas need to be widely accepted if race relations are to improve.

The Argument

According to Pew Research, 88% of Trump’s voters in 2016 were white.[1] This, combined with Trump’s recent opposition to address or engage with the root causes of increased racial tensions, suggests that Trump can stoke tensions whilst maintaining large support. If he were to engage with ideas such as ‘white privilege’ or ‘systemic racism’, he risks losing sections of his white supporter base. In September 2020, Trump signed an executive order banning federal agencies and contractors providing anti-racism training that promotes “destructive ideology” and “divisive concepts” such as white guilt and structural racism.[2] These are precisely the concepts that recent Black Lives Matter protests have sought to raise awareness of. By opposing racism awareness education and training programmes, Trump is not only violating the right to free speech, he is also using government resources to “suppress speech about race and gender that the Trump administration disfavours”.[3] Trump opposes the Black Lives Matter movement, fails to recognise the root causes of racial tensions and is now imposing restrictions on anti-racism training. This shows he has no intention of repairing race relations, this might be because he doesn’t need to to continue to receive support from white Americans.

Counter arguments

Concepts such as white privilege, white guilt and structural racism suggest that America is necessarily a racist country, and this is false - this kind of anti-racism training “perpetuates racial stereotypes and division” and misrepresents American history.[2] Accusing all white people of being guilty of benefitting from structural racism is itself racist. Trump wants to repair race relations, and has pledged to prosecute the Ku Klux Klan and Antifa as terrorist organisations.[4] By outlawing racist extremism from both sides of the political spectrum, race relations will improve.



Rejecting the premises


This page was last edited on Thursday, 15 Oct 2020 at 10:56 UTC

Explore related arguments