“Has @BubbaWallace apologized to all of those great NASCAR drivers & officials who came to his aid, stood by his side, & were willing to sacrifice everything for him, only to find out that the whole thing was just another HOAX? That & Flag decision has caused lowest ratings EVER,” he tweeted.
While appearing on a recent episode of Jimmy Kimmel Live!, guest host Anthony Anderson asked the 26-year-old driver about the accusation.
“So to be late to the party is one thing, and to be wrong on the factual information is another,” Wallace said. “But all in all, he did get one thing right in his tweet, though: the great officials that continue to stand behind me — NASCAR drivers and officials that continue to stand behind me through it all — he got that part right. We have a great sport that I’m proud to be a part of.”
The competitive driver previously responded to Trump’s comments in a statement shared on Twitter on Monday, not long after the president’s Tweet.
“Your words and actions will always be held to a higher standard than others. You have to be prepared for that. You don’t learn these things in school. You learn them from trials and tribulations, the ups and downs this crazy world provides,” he wrote. “You will always have people testing you, seeing if they can knock you off your pedestal. I encourage you to keep your head held high and walk proudly on the path you have chosen.
“Last thing, always deal with the hate being thrown at you with love. Love over hate every day… Even when it’s hate from the POTUS. Love wins.”
— Bubba Wallace (@BubbaWallace) July 6, 2020
Tyler Reddick, a driver for Richard Childress Racing, responded to Trump’s tweet in a since-deleted post, per ESPN.
“We don’t need an apology,” he wrote. “We did what was right and we will do just fine without your support.”
In an interview with Fox News, White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said the president was “merely pointing out that we’ve got to let facts come out before we jump to judgement.”
Others have jumped to defend Wallace, like Richard Petty Motorsports co-owner Andrew Mursteins, who called Trump’s tweet “a late, misinformed and factually incorrect statement,” citing that NASCAR released a photo of the noose in question two weeks ago.
As NASCAR’s only Black competitor, Wallace has been instrumental in making inclusive changes to the sport, like spearheading the removal of the Confederate flag at stadiums.
After the FBI investigated the noose and concluded there was “no crime committed,” Wallace acknowledged the findings and tweeted: “Make no mistake, though some will try, this should not detract from the show of unity we had on Monday, and the progress we’ve made as a sport to be a more welcoming environment for all.”
Whether the rope in Wallace’s stall was a noose or not, the symbol is racist and violent against Black people, per the Anti-Defamation League’s website.
“Its origins are connected to the history of lynching in America, particularly in the South after the Civil War, when violence or threat of violence replaced slavery as one of the main forms of social control that whites used on African-Americans,” the website states.
A recent Equal Justice Initiative report notes that more than 6,500 racial terror lynchings took place in the U.S. between 1865 and 1950 following the end of the American Civil War.
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