Donald Trump Photograph:( Reuters )
The roundtable was organised for a discussion on public safety, and the two African-American pastors were the only ones from the community seated at the dais
A roundtable event was held in Kenosha, Wisconsin on Tuesday to discuss about the police violence that has led to deaths of several unarmed African-American people in the US.
However, the only African-Americans present in the room were also not given enough chances to speak their minds, courtesy the US President Donald Trump.
The roundtable was organised for a discussion on public safety, and the two African-American pastors were the only ones from the community seated at the dais. the two pastors, James Ward and Sharon Ward, were there to represent Julia Jackson, the mother of Jacob Blake — the Black man who was shot seven times in the back by a Kenosha police officer.
The pastors were asked by reporters if they believed that police violence was systemic. When the question was clearly directed towards the Wards, Trump waste no second in answering for them, without any intimation, and said, "I don't believe that. I think the police do an incredible job and I think you do have some bad apples."
"You do have the other situation, too, where they're under tremendous pressure and they don't handle it well. They call it choking and it happens," he added.
During the discussion, he also stated that he has had several interactions with the US police and those interactions were enough evidence for him to understand that the US police was not unjustly violent towards the African-American community, and that the police violence was not a systematic issue.
"No, but I don't believe that at all," he told the reporter. "I've met so many police. I have the endorsement of like, so many, maybe everybody."
Trump was also asked if he thought racism, in general, was a systemic problem, with the reporters putting forth examples of non-violent and peaceful protests. However, trump was quick to dismiss those by saying, "Well, you know you just keep getting back to the opposite subject. We should talk about the kind of violence we've seen in Portland and here and other places."
"The fact is that we've seen tremendous violence and we will put it out very, very quickly if given the chance," he continued.
Throughtout the discussion, the pastors were given close to no chance to speak, even when the reporters tried telling Trump that the questions were directed towards the Wards.