US President Donald Trump on Sunday tweeted that congresswomen of colour should “go back to where they came from”.
He was allegedly referring to four congresswomen, Palestinian-American congresswoman Rashida Tlaib, Somalian-American Ilhan Omar, Puerto Rican-American Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and African-American Ayanna Pressley.
Following accusations of racism, President Trump responded by labelling the four – known as “the squad” – “unpopular and unrepresentative”, accusing them of making “Israel feel abandoned by the US”.
If Democrats want to unite around the foul language & racist hatred spewed from the mouths and actions of these very unpopular & unrepresentative Congresswomen, it will be interesting to see how it plays out. I can tell you that they have made Israel feel abandoned by the U.S.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 15, 2019
Some were excited about the prospect of Palestinians being able to return to Palestine.
Trump: “If you don’t like it here, you can go back to where you came from.”
— Amer Zahr (@AmerZahr) July 15, 2019
Others were confused President Trump’s stance on Israel-Palestine after his outburst.
So if President Trump tells Rashida Tlaib to go back home is he advocating for the Palestinians right of return? I'm lost!!
— zak brophy (@zakbrophy) July 16, 2019
Some Twitter users were quick to point out it was not possible for Tlaib – or other in fact other diaspora Palestinians – to go home due to Israel’s occupation.
My precious father Wasim was a child #refugees from Jerusalem, Palestine. He loves America and works every day to help progress America's promise. He has also been told to go back to where he came from. He would—we all would—if our ancestral home wasn't occupied by Zionists.
— Alexandra Halaby🏳️⚧️ (@iskandrah) July 15, 2019
How can Rashidai Tlaib go back to Palestine (I know she was born in Detroit) when Zionists like you wiped Palestine off the map? (google the world map and try to find Palestine)- and then you tell her to go home?
— Tɪᴍ Mᴇʟʟɪs (@timm500) July 14, 2019
Meanwhile, Tlaib accused President Trump of attempting to divert attention from the planned “rounding up” of migrants by the US’ Immigration Customs Enforcement (ICE).
.@RepKarenBass is right.
My biggest fear is that he is intentionally distracting us from the fact that ICE is knocking on doors without warrants right now.
He is distracting us from the fact that colleagues are at the border reporting on the horrific and inhumane conditions. https://t.co/fwk4677gtp
— Rashida Tlaib (@RashidaTlaib) July 14, 2019
President Trump’s Press Secretary, Stephanie Grisham, attempted to explain away his comments.
So typical to watch the mainstream media and Dems attack @realDonaldTrump for speaking directly to the American people. His message is simple: the U.S.A. is the greatest nation on Earth, but if people aren’t happy here they don’t have to stay.
— Kayleigh McEnany 45 Archived (@PressSec45) July 15, 2019
California Congressman Ted Lieu retorted that President Trump’s words were racist, plain and simple.
Dear @PressSec: When people tell me to "go back" to where I came from, it's because of my race. The message from @realDonaldTrump was simple, but it was also racist. There is no way to spin the racist tweets of @POTUS because most Americans can read. He wrote what he wrote. https://t.co/7BYrcJGXIu
— Ted Lieu (@tedlieu) July 16, 2019
Others pointed out that President Trump’s own wife, Melania, was herself a migrant:
When outgoing-UK Prime Minister Theresa May condemned his comments, people were quick to point out her infamous “go home” posters.
Theresa May says Donald Trump's "Go Home" comments are completely unacceptable pic.twitter.com/f7YdOUSDD0
— HappyToast★ (@IamHappyToast) July 15, 2019
Theresa May: "It's completely unacceptable for Donald Trump to tell Congresswomen to go home"
Also Theresa May: pic.twitter.com/UzrYgptZVB
— JCWI (@JCWI_UK) July 15, 2019
Others suggested that perhaps President Trump should put his money where his mouth is and “go back to where he came from”, given his “Scotch” roots.
Is Donald Trump racist and should he go back to his own countries (Germany and Scotland) before showing us how it’s done?
— Sebastian Wocker 📚🎸😎 (@sebastianwocker) July 15, 2019
AOC and Megan McCain lead backlash against Trump's 'racist' tweet https://t.co/9bGj4hHoU2 via @MailOnline THIS MAN IS DISGUSTING Germany nor scotland will take you when you go back to where you came from hideous behaviour
— nicola jane ablett (@rakdiva) July 15, 2019
I see racist Trump is telling people born in the USA of immigrant heritage to "go back to their own countries" if they disagree with him. Don't think he'll be welcome back in Scotland!
— Eddie Mooney (@moonoid) July 15, 2019
However, some were not keen on the idea of President Trump returning to Scotland.
For the avoidance of doubt, if this “go back to your own country” becomes a thing, under NO circumstances will Scotland EVER give political asylum to Trump! We don’t much like racists or people who lack basic humanity.
— Rhoda Miller (@RhodaMiller14) July 16, 2019