Thursday, May 05, 2011

"The Donald" By: Russell Simmons

 
I know it's not popular to say this, but I ain't no punk and I don't abandon my friends. I have spoken to Donald Trump twice a week for the past 15 years, he's from Queens and I'm from Queens. We might have stolen the bikes of the kids that lived in his part of Queens, but as grown men, I would think that beef is long behind us. His private planes, the amount of gold doorknobs that adorn his hotels or the way he fired Gary Busey might not be for everyone, but for the record, I like his scrappy-ness, and his lack of filter. Even if I disagree with almost all of his political views and tactics, I like his loyalty and that's what friendship is about. And loyalty was the code of the streets growing up in Queens.

Having said that, as a friend I'm disappointed by a lot of what Donald has said over the past few weeks. His statements have echoed some of the lowest notes in American politics. But as a Democrat, I don't feel hurt by what he says. That's because every day he's helping Obama secure a second term in office.

And even though it might not have been his intention, Donald is also giving a voice to a mentality, usually only discussed privately, that needs to be flushed out and confronted. In an increasingly diverse and tolerant America we are proving that this mentality won't fly. However one thing I can tell you, as a person who knows him better than most in this discussion, you can say a lot of things about Trump, but he absolutely is not a racist...he just wants his bike back.

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