Donald Trump told Bill O’Reilly on Tuesday that he witnessed people call for a moment of silence for the man who killed five police officers and wounded eleven other people at a Black Lives Matter rally last week.
Asked by the Fox News host if there was a divide between blacks and whites in America, Trump used this as an example of how “there would seem to be.”
“It’s getting more and more obvious and it’s very sad, very sad,” Trump went on. “When somebody called for a moment of silence to this maniac that shot the five police, you just see what’s going on. It’s a very, very sad situation.”
There were no media reports about anyone calling for a moment of silence for gunman Micah Johnson, though groups from Congress to the New York Stock Exchange held moments of silence for the victims of last Thursday’s mass shooting. Searches on social media for people making such calls also came up short.
Despite this lack of evidence, Trump reiterated the claim at a rally in Westfield, Indiana on Tuesday night, where he criticized Black Lives Matter for holding rallies across the country the weekend after the Dallas shootings.
“The other night you had 11 cities potentially in a blow-up stage,” he said. “Marches all over the United States—and tough marches. Anger. Hatred. Hatred! Started by a maniac! And some people ask for a moment of silence for him. For the killer!”
The presumptive GOP nominee shared other thoughts on race relations during his interview with O’Reilly. Asked if he agreed that the system was biased against black Americans, Trump pointed out that it was rigged “even against” him.
“What I’m saying they are not necessarily wrong,” he explained. “There are certain people where unfortunately that comes into play. I’m not saying that. I can relate it really very much to myself.”
O’Reilly pushed Trump to focus on “the African-American experience,” asking if he understood it.
“Well, I would like to say yes, but you really can’t unless you are African-American,” he replied. “You can’t truly understand what’s going on unless you are African-American. I would like to say yes, however.”
As for whether black Americans are treated differently than whites by the police, Trump said “it’s possible.”