President Trump has been accused of holding racist views toward black people for more than 40 years. Long before he launched his presidential campaign, he was sued by the federal government for discriminating against black people in his housing developments.
So for some Americans long aware of his history, which included advocating the execution of five black and Latino teenagers wrongly convicted of raping a jogger in Central Park, Trump's comments stating that black immigrants come from "shithole" countries and that Mexican immigrants include "murderers" and "rapists" came as no surprise.
But according to many Americans, including hip hop artist Shawn "Jay-Z" Carter, that does not make Trump's worldview on race acceptable.
Carter told CNN's Van Jones:
“It really is hurtful, more so. Like everyone feels anger, but after the anger it’s really hurtful, because he’s looking down on a whole population of people, and he’s so misinformed because these places have beautiful people and have beautiful everything. Like, this is the leader of the free world speaking like this.”
As he is known to do, the leader of the free world took to Twitter to push back against Carter, but not by addressing his actual comments about Trump's "hurtful" remarks. Instead, he pivoted to a popular talking point of his when responding to criticism about his relationship with black people.
The black unemployment rate for December was the lowest in history — 6.8 percent. And Trump has taken credit for it, claiming that his policies led to the drop.
While the White House has not specifically laid out which policies Trump implemented that led to a decrease in the black unemployment rate, many people have explained that the low unemployment rate cannot be attributed solely to Trump and that it actually began dropping long before Trump launched his presidential campaign.
The Washington Post's Philip Bump previously wrote that Trump's claim is "very misleading."
"It’s not as if black unemployment was 18 percent under Barack Obama and, as soon as Trump took office, it plummeted. Black unemployment fell fairly consistently from 2010 on, as did the rates for whites and Hispanics.
From January to December 2017, the unemployment rate among black Americans fell 1 percentage point. During the same period in 2016, it fell the same amount. In 2015, it fell 1.9 points. The previous year, it fell 1.5 points. The year before that, it fell 1.8 points."
But even if Trump had played the role that he claims, Carter told Jones, it's not okay for him "to say terrible things but put money in our pockets."
"It's not about money at the end of the day. Money doesn't equate to happiness. It doesn't. That's missing the whole point," he said.
"You treat people like human beings. That's the main point," Carter added. "It goes back to the whole thing — 'treat me really bad and pay me well.' It's not going to lead to happiness, it's going to lead to, again, the same thing. Everyone's going to be sick."
It appears Trump doesn't agree with this — that it's not okay to call the home countries of immigrants "shithole" places or refer to NFL players protesting racism as sons of bitches just because the economy is doing well.
The president's son has seemed to suggest that "all he cares about" is money.
"My father sees one color, green," Eric Trump said on "Fox and Friends" this month after the president's comments about predominantly black countries went public. "That is all he cares about, he cares about the economy. He does not see race."
Eric Trump, like his siblings, defends his father staunchly on all matters, including race. In the same Fox appearance, he said, "He is the least racist person I ever met in my entire life. It's total nonsense."
To many voters, the idea that the president doesn't see race is "total nonsense."
The reality is that different policies affect Americans of different races differently. While Trump brags about how low the black unemployment rate is, he has yet to mention that it is still nearly double the white unemployment rate. And experts point to racial discrimination in housing — similar to what Trump was accused of doing in the 1970s — as one of the reasons.
It's also not believable that Trump does not see race, according to a recent Washington Post-ABC poll.
More than half — 52 percent — of Americans believe that Trump is biased against black people. That number jumps to nearly 8 in 10 — 79 percent — when you ask black Americans specifically, a group that continues to give Trump some of the lowest approval ratings for his job performance.
While the president may be the least racist person his son has ever met, the American people consider him to be among one of the most racially insensitive political leaders in recent history.
Nearly a year into Trump’s presidency, 6 in 10 Americans say his election has led to worse race relations in the United States, according to a Pew Research Center survey.