Wrigley, the company that manufactures Skittles candy, fired back at Donald Trump Jr.’s controversial tweet comparing Syrian refugees to a bowl of poisoned Skittles candy.
On Monday night, Trump Jr. tweeted a photo of a bowl of Skittles with a caption that read, “If I had a bowl of skittles and I told you just three would kill you. Would you take a handful? That’s our Syrian refugee problem.”
— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) September 19, 2016
“This image says it all,” tweeted Trump Jr.
“Skittles are candy. Refugees are people. We don’t feel it’s an appropriate analogy. We will respectfully refrain from further commentary as anything we say could be misinterpreted as marketing,” said Wrigley in a statement passed along Tuesday morning by Denise Young, vice president of corporate affairs for Wrigley Americas.
— Seth Abramovitch (@SethAbramovitch) September 20, 2016
The Washington Post pointed to a major flaw with Trump’s tiny bowl of Skittles analogy. They noted that the odds of being killed by a refugee in a terrorist attack are about 1 in more than 3.6 billion, according to a recent Cato Institute study. He’s gonna need a bigger bowl.
The reaction to Trump Jr.s tweet was swift, and brutal:
— Jon Favreau (@jonfavs) September 20, 2016
— Gabe Ortíz (@TUSK81) September 20, 2016
A Google image search of “skittles trayvon meme” reveals a horrible bounty of captioned images mocking the slain teenager, whose killer was acquitted after claiming self-defense under Florida’s “stand your ground” law.
But the poisoned candy analogy goes back even further, to an anti-Semitic children’s book published by Julius Streicher, the publisher of the Nazi newspaper Der Stürmer who was executed in 1946 as a war criminal.
The book tells the tale of “the poisonous mushroom,” and was used to indoctrinate children in hate.
“Just as poisonous mushrooms spring up everywhere, so the Jew is found in every country in the world,” the story’s mother explains to her son. “Just as poisonous mushrooms often lead to the most dreadful calamity, so the Jew is the cause of misery and distress, illness and death.”
So Trump’s appalling analogy isn’t just unoriginal and demeaning — it’s actually racist in four different ways.