There’s been plenty of activity already in the race to be the next president, despite the fact that the election is still nearly two years away. We’re used to elongated primary seasons, but with the kind of Trump fatigue America is experiencing, I’m frankly surprised there weren’t about 20 hats in the ring by June of 2017. But now it seems like every day someone new announces their candidacy — allow me to date this article by saying I wrote it the day Cory Booker officially announced — and with the exception of “centrist independent” Howard Schultz, basically all of them have a fan club.
None of those fans clubs are quite as big, however, as Senator Kamala Harris’ enthusiastic crowd. She announced relatively early and to not a whole lot of surprise, as most expected her to run. But aside from “vetting” questions that will surely be sorted out in the primary debates (some lefties are less than excited to vote for a prosecutor), she ticks all the boxes: Supports Medicare for All, supports the Green New Deal, and represents intersectional minority in a way other candidates so far do not. And she’s the front-runner, by all accounts.
What I’m saying is, if you haven’t heard the name “Kamala Harris” said out loud in the last two years, you live under a rock.
Or in the White House, as it turns out. In an interview with the New York Times, the President was commenting on his upcoming potential opponents for 2020, and he seemed to agree with the assessment that Harris came out strong:
I would say the best opening so far would be Kamala Harris. I would say in terms of the opening act, I would say, would be her. A better crowd — better crowd, better enthusiasm.”
But as noted by Peter Baker and Maggie Haberman, the reporters on the piece, Trump pronounced the Senator’s first name as “Ka-MEE-la,” rather than the correct pronunciation, “KAH-ma-la.” You know, like if you pronounced his name DOUGH-nuld. It was either purposeful or he literally actually doesn’t give even the tiniest shit about any other living human than himself.
I’m leaning toward the second. Internet users, however, seemed to just think he’s dumb:
President Trump can’t say Kamala Harris’s name.
He pronounces it “Kameela.” https://t.co/SuwQ13AAVz
— Zach Stafford (@ZachStafford) February 1, 2019
If he gets onstage somewhere and calls her “Kameela”, I will die.
— Phyllis X (@ithinkmark) February 1, 2019
— Carla Marinucci (@cmarinucci) February 1, 2019
In all seriousness, however, this is actually a racist practice, whether it’s on purpose or not. Nobody would ever call him DOUGH-nuld, because “Donald” is a nice, white name and you would be made fun of for not understanding how it’s pronounced. Peter. Kevin. Cathy. Theresa. Any or all could be pronounced oddly but aren’t. As soon as it’s Saquon or Talib or Ilhan, it’s totally fine to mispronounce it — and plenty of conservatives do so on purpose, in order to dehumanize or mock nonwhite-sounding names.
Whatever Deenildo Tramp’s motivation is, he sounds like a jerk.
Featured image via screen capture