CLEVELAND HEIGHTS, Ohio — Boxing promoter Don King used a racial slur while introducing Donald Trump here Wednesday during an African-American outreach event in which the Republican nominee reacted to recent police shootings.
King, who was introduced by vice presidential nominee Mike Pence, regaled the seated crowd of clergy and supporters here at New Spirit Revival Center with a story he once told to Michael Jackson.
"I told Michael Jackson, I said, 'If you're poor, you're a poor negro,' I would use the N-word,” King warned, only to fulfill the prophecy moments later.
"If you are a dancing and sliding and gliding [N-word], I meant negro, you're a dancing and sliding and gliding negro. So dare not alienate because you cannot assimilate. So you know you're going to be a negro till you die,” King said.
King also worked to appeal to white women, saying that “white women and the slave-people of color” were not given rights when “the system was created.” He recommended, then, that these “left outs” group vote for Trump so he can throw out the system as it exists today.
"So that's why when I see them try to ridiculize [sic] him or to try to ostracize and pervert I want you to understand that every white woman should cast their vote for Donald Trump,” King said. “Not for Donald Trump the man, but to knock out the system. To help him, to get their rights you know.”
When it was Trump’s time to speak, he told those gathered at the the church he is “very, very troubled” by the recent police shootings of black men in Tulsa, Oklahoma and Charlotte, North Carolina.
Trump reiterated his pro-police position but noted that in every group of good people “you always have problems.” The Republican nominee wondered if these problems were due to mistakes, choking, or bad intention.
“That man was hands up, that man went to the car, hands up, put his hands on the car, I mean to me it looked like he did everything you’re supposed to do,” Trump said of Terence Crutcher, who was shot to death by police in Tulsa on Friday. Video footage of the shooting was released Monday.
Trump called the shooting “terrible” and noted these are just the latest in a string of concerning police shootings.
“Police are troubled by it, too,” Trump added.
The GOP nominee then proceeded to speculate about what could have led to Crutcher’s shooting by a young female officer. “Did she get scared? Was she choking? What happened?” Trump wondered aloud. He then suggested that “people that choke” maybe “can’t be doing what they’re doing.”
The event, hosted by Cleveland Pastor Darrell Scott, was another attempt to appeal to black voters and among a handful of events Trump has attended in predominantly black communities.