Washington Post implies Trump encourages shooting border crossers

The Washington Post suggested Thursday that President Trump endorsed “tacitly encouraging extrajudicial killings and brutality” against caravans headed to the U.S.

The paper's story focused on a moment that occurred immediately after saying he would "never" use weapons at a Florida campaign rally Wednesday.

Trump was discussing the ongoing issue of migrants crossing the Southern Border and specifically said he “would never let” law enforcement officials use weapons to keep them from entering the country illegally.

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“We can’t let them use weapons, we can’t. Other counties do. We can’t,” Trump said. “I would never do that.”

The president then asked, presumably rhetorically, “How do you stop these people?”

Someone in the crowd apparently yelled “shoot them,” prompting Trump to shake his head “no” and respond, “Only in the Panhandle, you can get away with that statement.”

The Post covered the exchange on Thursday in a story headlined, “‘Shoot them!’: Trump laughs off a supporter’s demand for violence against migrants.” The paper’s Antonia Noori Farzan didn’t mention that Trump specifically said he would “never” allow weapons to be used until the eighth paragraph.

The piece first noted that the audience cheered the exchange before quickly implying that Trump approved of the “shoot them” response.

“Though Trump didn’t explicitly endorse the suggestion to shoot migrants, his joking response raised concerns that he was tacitly encouraging extrajudicial killings and brutality against asylum seekers and undocumented immigrants,” the story said.

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It then added, “The president has long been accused of endorsing acts of violence through his incendiary rhetoric and allusions to the potential for violence at his rallies, a charge that members of his administration deny.”

The Washington Post did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The paper wasn’t finished piling on, noting that Trump supporters seated behind the president “wore serious, perturbed frowns, which were quickly replaced by broad grins after the shouted suggestion that the solution involved firearms.”

President Trump has regularly criticized the coverage he receives from the Post during his time in the White House, often pointing out that it’s owned by Amazon’s Jeff Bezos.