Charlottesville: Black American pastor says Donald Trump is right - and he's not racist

Trump hit out at reporters over Charlottesville and blamed both left and right for the crisis

Donald Trump held a fiery press conference on Charlottesville

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

A black American pastor and key Donald Trump supporter has said the President's approach to Charlottesville was right - and he certainly isn't a racist.

Mark Burns spoke to Sam Delaney alongside Scott Shepherd, a former KKK leader who is now an anti-racism campaigner, about Trump's extraordinary press conference on Charlottesville.

Burns, who advised Trump during the election campaign and is an old friend of the President, played down suggestions that Trump was apologising for white supremacists by blaming all sides for the violence in Virginia.

"What he stated in his controversial comments was a harsh reality," Burns said. "It is a fact that what he stated was very true."

Instead of blaming Trump, he hit out at the media for "fuelling the fire", adding "they are the ones connecting the white supremacist groups to Donald Trump."

Trump, Burns said, was "very loved by people before he ran for President, and then immediately those in the mainstream media began to connect Donald Trump with alt-right and white supremacist organisations."

No matter what Trump says, Burns continued, "his haters will never be satisfied."

Shepherd, who left the KKK after a series of run-ins with the law, had some strong words for David Duke, another man who has held a senior role in the Klan.

Duke, Shepherd said, is "an opportunist" and would have supported Hillary Clinton had she won.

"Anytime he can jump on a bandwagon that's exactly what he does," Shepherd said. "I wouldn't take stock in anything David Duke said."

Shepherd also said many of those who champion the old Confederacy are nothing more than "history buffs" but Trump hasn't helped himself in this latest crisis, as "he hasn't clarified what he's trying to say."

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