The NASCAR superstar's tweet supporting NFL players protesting against racism is his most popular ever. Trump's tweet trying to co-opt NASCAR lags far behind.
NASCAR superstar Dale Earnhardt Jr. rebuked Donald Trump’s campaign against NFL players who are protesting systematic racism, and the tweet he used to make his statement has now become his most popular social media message.
Earnhardt, who is the son of NASCAR Hall of Famer Dale Earnhardt Sr., wrote, “All Americans R granted rights 2 peaceful protests.” His message was posted online minutes after Trump tweeted about how NASCAR supporters and fans “won’t put up with disrespecting our Country or our Flag.”
The Earnhardt tweet also highlighted a quote from President John F. Kennedy, saying, “Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable.”
All Americans R granted rights 2 peaceful protests
Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable-JFK
— Ralph Dale Earnhardt Jr. (@DaleJr) September 25, 2017
Earnhardt’s tweet went viral and attracted 370,753 favorites and 140,903 retweets — the most ever on his account.
By comparison, Trump’s NASCAR tweet came up limp, performing much worse than Earnhardt’s message. Trump got half the favorites of Earnhardt and less than a quarter of the retweets of the NASCAR driver.
Defending the right of black players to protest racial injustice isn’t the only area where Trump and Earnhardt differ. While Trump lamented the removal of memorials that honor pro-slavery Confederates, Earnhardt came out against the Confederate flag.
“I think it’s offensive to an entire race,” he said. “It does nothing for anybody to be there flying, so I don’t see any reason. It belongs in the history books and that’s about it.”
Earnhardt has also rebuked Trump’s anti-immigrant stance, writing about his German heritage and proclaiming, “America is created by immigrants.”
His tweet on the NFL protest – Earnhardt is a devoted fan of the sport – and the reaction to it show once again that despite his attempt to co-opt a sport with close ties to “red” America, Trump is out of touch with the heartland.