Trump surrogate Mark Burns lashes out at media for blackface cartoon fallout
Days after posting a cartoon of Hillary Clinton in blackface to his Twitter account, evangelical pastor and Donald Trump surrogate Mark Burns used another cartoon to blame the media for the backlash he faced.
The cartoon posted Thursday by Burns features a sullen-looking Clinton, her face covered in green makeup with the word “scandal” written on it multiple times. Beside the former secretary of state is a reporter holding a microphone with a “media” mic flag, pointing away from Clinton.
“Look over there!” the reporter says in the cartoon. “A Hillary blackface cartoon!”
In the post accompanying the drawing, Burns wrote, “Isn’t this the TRUTH…! This is what Liberal #MSM do for @HillaryClinton,” using the hashtag abbreviation for mainstream media. He then complimented the cartoonist on his “great drawing.”
— Pastor Mark Burns (@pastormarkburns) September 1, 2016
On Monday, Burns tweeted out a drawing of Clinton in blackface, wearing a t-shirt that read “No hot sauce no peace!” and holding a sign that said “#@!*✶ the police.” Next to Clinton in the cartoon was text that read “I ain’t no ways tired of pandering to African Americans,” and in the tweet, Burns conveyed what he said was Clinton’s message to African-American voters: “Black Americans, THANK YOU FOR YOUR VOTES and letting me use you again..See you again in 4 years.”
The evangelical pastor, who spoke at the Republican National Convention in July, later deleted the tweet but then posted another one, again featuring the cartoon, that read “Getting Your Head chopped off by ISIS is more important than a cartoon…Can You Hear Me Now? #STOPTHEPANDERING.”
He also later apologized for the original post, saying it was “not at all my intention to offend anyone.”
Burns posted the blackface cartoon in the midst of Trump’s attempt to do more to reach out to black voters, a group with which he has polled poorly. Before mostly-white audiences, Trump has made the case to African-Americans that they have been failed by Democrats who have left them in dangerous neighborhoods with poor schools and little economic opportunity. Trump has positioned himself as a fresh alternative, often asking black voters “what do you have to lose?” by voting for him.
“The tweet is a frustration that I have as a black man here in America and how I see African-Americans in many cases — not every case but in many cases — are suffering throughout this country and to see how en masse we have been voting for the Democratic Party en masse and yet we have very little to show for it,” Burn said during a phone interview on MSNBC earlier this week, explaining his original blackface tweet. “It’s a vexation to me to see how the Democratic Party, and especially Hillary Clinton, what I call tap dance for the black vote, get it and then disappear for four more years.”
Trump and his campaign regularly makes offensive statements then uses the tactic of blaming the media for reporting on them.