People with close ties to the Trump administration often have a way of invoking civil rights leaders for the sake of their cause. This time, it’s Trump adviser and conservative economist Stephen Moore, who compared protestors against coronavirus shutdowns to the iconic Rosa Parks.
In a YouTube video posted last week, Moore, who is on the Trump-assembled council in charge of reopening the country, called on protestors to channel the woman known as “the mother of the freedom movement.” “This is a great time for civil disobedience,” Moore said in a YouTube video in which he announces a shutdown of the Wisconsin state capitol. “We need to be the Rosa Parks here and protest against these government injustices.”
Moore shared similar sentiments in an interview with the Washington Post. “I think there’s a boiling point that has been reached and exceeded,” he reportedly told the newspaper. “I call these people the modern-day Rosa Parks—they are protesting against injustice and a loss of liberties,” he added.
Naturally, his comments drew backlash on social media, triggering the name of Rosa Parks to start trending over the weekend. Best-selling author Ibram X. Kendi tweeted along with a link to The Post article, “Stephen Moore calls them ‘modern-day Rosa Parks.’ But Parks desired different freedoms. These folk want the freedom to infect, like they have wanted the freedom to enslave, lynch, deport, exclude, rob. They have always protested the ‘loss of liberties.’ ”
Rev. William Barber expressed similar disdain for Moore’s comments, tweeting, “There’s a lot of madness going on. The daily briefings at the White House are becoming weirder & weirder. It’s pure madness, when you see the level of lies coming from the president & then to compare Trump supporters defying #COVID19 “stay in place” orders w/ Rosa Parks? Madness.”
Moore’s support of the protestors comes in close proximity to a series of tweets where Trump, on Friday, called on the people of Minnesota, Michigan and Virginia, all states under a stay-at-home order by Democratic governors, to be liberated.