The former governor of California denounced President Trump for not taking a stronger stand against bigotry
Arnold Schwarzenegger is slamming Donald Trump for the president’s response to the neo-Nazi and white supremacist violence in Charlottesville, Virginia last week.
The former governor of California released a video Thursday, telling Trump (and a Trump bobblehead figure), “As president of this great country, you have a moral responsibility to send an unequivocal message that you won’t stand for hate and racism.”
Earlier this week, President Trump blamed “both sides” for the violence, comments that were swiftly condemned for morally equating neo Nazis and white supremacists with counter-protesters (one of whom, Heather Heyer, died in the riots.) “There are not two sides to bigotry, and there are not two sides to hatred,” Schwarzenegger declared in response to Trump’s words. “And if you choose to march with a flag that symbolizes the slaughter of millions of people, there are not two sides to that. The only way to beat the loud, angry voices of hate is to meet them with louder, more reasonable voices — that includes you, President Trump.”
Schwarzenegger also addressed the neo-Nazis and white supremacists of America, recalling his own childhood growing up in Austria in the wake of World War II.
“Let me be as blunt as possible: Your heroes are losers,” Scwharzenegger said. “You are supporting a lost cause. Believe me, I knew the original Nazis. I was born in Austria in 1947, shortly after the Second World War. Growing up, I was surrounded by broken men, men who came home from the war filled with shrapnel and guilt, men who were misled into a losing ideology. And I can tell you: these ghosts that you idolize spent the rest of their lives living in shame, and right now, they’re resting in hell.”
Last weekend, after the violence in Charlottesville, Schwarzenegger said he’s donating $100,000 to the Simon Wiesenthal Center, an anti-hate organization. Watch his full remarks in the video above.
Schwarzenegger and Trump have sparred frequently, with Trump taking a shot at Schwarzenegger earlier this year for the actor’s stints as host of The New Celebrity Apprentice on NBC. (Schwarzenegger later exited as host.)
“When I ran for president I knew I had to leave the show, that’s when I knew for sure I was doing it,” Trump said during a prayer breakfast in February. “And they hired a big, big movie star Arnold Schwarzenegger to take my place, and we know how that turned out. Ratings went right down the tubes, it’s been a total disaster, and Mark [Burnett, the Apprectice executive producer] will never, ever bet against Trump again. And I want to just pray for Arnold if we can, for those ratings.”
In response, Schwarzenegger said, “Hey Donald, I have an idea. Why don’t we switch jobs? Since you’re such an expert in ratings, then people can finally sleep comfortably again.”