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Trump to accept nomination in Florida on race massacre’s anniversary

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  • President Donald Trump will give his speech at the Republican National Committee convention, which was relocated to Jacksonville, Florida, on August 27, if the RNC sticks to its initial plans for the convention.
  • It’s the same date as the 60th anniversary of Ax Handle Saturday, where a white mob attacked Black people participating in a sit-in with baseball bats and ax handles. 
  • Trump on Friday announced that he was moving the date of an upcoming rally which was set to be on Juneteenth in Tulsa, Oklahoma, the site of the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre.
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President Donald Trump will give his Republican National Committee convention speech in Jacksonville, Florida, on August 27, The New York Times reported, if the RNC sticks to its initial schedule.

August 27 is also the 60th anniversary of Ax Handle Saturday in Jacksonville. In 1960, a group of 200 white men attacked African American protesters conducting a sit-in at Hemming Park with baseball bats and ax handles. The violence spread, and the mob started attacking all African Americans, according to The Florida Historical Society

According to The Times, it’s one of the grimmest days in the city’s history. A marker to commemorate Ax Handle Saturday was added to the park in 2001.

It’s not clear if Republican officials were aware of this historical event when they chose Jacksonville as the site for Trump’s speech.

The venue was initially set for Charlotte, North Carolina, but after Trump clashed with the governor over social distancing guidelines amid the coronavirus pandemic, only a portion of the convention will be in Charlotte, while Trump’s speech will be a six-hour drive away in Jacksonville.

In a statement, Paris Dennard, an RNC adviser for Black media affairs said, “While we cannot erase some of the darkest moments of our nation’s past, we can denounce them, learn from them, fight for justice and a more perfect union for every American.”

 

 

On Friday, Trump announced that he would be rescheduling a June 19 rally in Tulsa, after he was advised to change the date out of “respect for this Holiday, and in observance of this important occasion and all that it represents.” The rally will now be held on June 20, rather than on Juneteenth, a day that celebrates emancipation.

Tulsa, Oklahoma, is also the site of another brutal race massacre. June 1 marked the 99th anniversary of the Tulsa Race Massacre of 1921, where a white mob attacked Black Americans and destroyed part of the city.

The Trump campaign was widely criticized for initially scheduling the rally on an important holiday for Black Americans in Tulsa, the site of a massacre that historians estimate left 300 dead and “Black Wall Street” destroyed.

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