Trump Campaign Bars Black Attendees in Boca Raton
In a video released this week, a police officer is seen telling a group of black people that Donald Trump’s campaign has banned them from a rally in Boca Raton — while a white man, who admits he is a protester, is allowed to enter.
In the video, an officer Sgt. John Sluth explains to a group of black attendees — including a woman wearing a head covering — that they are not welcome to enter the event, but he says they can voice their opinions in “an area on the other side of the street.”
“We have tickets to the event,” the woman explains.
“That does not matter,” the Sgt. Sluth replies.
“But you don’t even know that we’re here to protest,” the woman notes.
“Does not matter,” the officer insists.
“So, she’s black and she’s wearing something on her head and she has tickets and you’re not letting her in?” Smith interrupts.
“Where did you hear me say that?” the officer asks. “The campaign has told us they don’t want them on the property.”
“What if I have tickets?” Smith presses. “I’m here to protest. And I have tickets.”
“Okay,” the officer shrugs.
“So he gets to go in?” the woman says as Smith walks past the officer into the Trump event.
The Trump campaign singled out a group of black people from entry into their event, while allowing a white man who identified himself as a protester to walk right by.
When questioned by reporters, law enforcement said it was on request of the Trump staff, and the Trump staff claimed the removal was initiated by law enforcement. The officer in the video makes it clear the Trump campaign singled out the group. If they were really the ones who tried to prevent protesters from entering the event they would have stopped the white guy as well. Logical dictates that the request came from the Trump campaign to refuse entry to the African-Americans.
It is important to note that, since Donald Trump is not the United States government, the First Amendment does not apply. Even though it was on public property, when the government leases public property for an event space, the private lessee may legally exclude individuals. Individuals can be ordered off the property and be arrested for trespassing if they do not comply. The Trump campaign was well within their legal rights to exclude whoever they wish. What is concerning however, is the Trump campaign requesting public law enforcement to remove peaceful citizens based off of the color of their skin.
This was not the only recorded event of non-white attendees being removed for no reason other than not being white. Sun Sentinel columnist Michael Mayo also recorded his removal.