Portland attack: Donald Trump called on to make statement about double murder

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Veteran journalist Dan Rather leads a chorus of people calling on the president to acknowledge the heroism of Taliesin Myrddin Namkai-Meche and Rick Best

Pressure is mounting on the US president, Donald Trump, to make a comment on the racist attack in Portland, Oregon that left two men dead.

Taliesin Myrddin Namkai-Meche, 23, and Rick Best, 53, were fatally stabbed on Friday while intervening to stop a racist attack on a Muslim teenager on a commuter train.

The pair have been honoured as heroes by Portlands mayor and the FBI, but the president has remained silent, despite tweeting 10 times on Sunday on topics ranging from healthcare to fake news.

Pleas are now mounting on social media for Trump to make a statement on the attack, which was carried out by a suspected white supremacist.

Dan Rather, the veteran American journalist, led the charge on Facebook, calling on Trump to acknowledge the brave Americans who died at the hands of someone who, when all the facts are collected, we may have every right to call a terrorist.

Rather wrote in an emotional post that although the story may not neatly fit into a narrative you pushed on the campaign trail and that has followed you into the White House, the men were not killed by an undocumented immigrant or a radical Islamic terrorist.

This extremism may be of a different type than gets most of your attention, or even the attention in the press. But that doesnt make it any less serious, or deadly, he wrote.

Rather finished his post by noting that Portland might not be on the presidents radar because it is a liberal city, but it is still an American city. And you are its President.

By Sunday night the post had had 370,000 likes and 8,7000 comments. His tweet linking to the Facebook post had been liked 15,000 times.

Rathers sentiments were echoed by scores of Twitter users who were dismayed by the presidents failure to speak about the double murder.

Tony Posnanski (@tonyposnanski)

Trump’s tweets today…

4 About Fake News
1 Congratulating a man who assaulted a reporter
1 About Europe trip

0 Denouncing Portland attack

May 28, 2017

Brian Klaas (@brianklaas)

Trump tweeted 2x today celebrating a candidate that assaulted a journalist but has said nothing yet about the 2 heroes murdered in Portland.

May 28, 2017

Shannon Watts (@shannonrwatts)

Donald Trump has yet to mention Portland heroes, a 23-year-old and a Vet, who gave their lives to protect Muslim women from an extremist. https://t.co/k7zbjpqctm

May 28, 2017

Peter Beinart (@PeterBeinart)

Call me crazy but had a Muslim killed two white Christians in Portland I suspect our president would have said something

May 29, 2017

Meanwhile, one of the teenagers who Best and Namkai-Meche stepped in to protect from the attack has paid tribute to the men. Destinee Mangum, who was travelling with a Muslim friend when the attack began, said the men had saved her life.

They lost their lives because of me and my friend, and the way we looked, she told KPTV in Oregon. I just want to say thank you to them and their family, and that I appreciate them. Without them, we probably would be dead right now.

Read more: https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/may/29/portland-attack-donald-trump-called-on-to-make-statement-about-double

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