WASHINGTON: At a North Carolina Trump rally on Thursday, a young Indian-American was evicted by Trump’s security, ostensibly because he didn’t look white American enough, and they believed he was a protestor.
Jake Anantha, 18, was a registered Republican wearing a Trump T-shirt, a Trump fanboy who had come to cheer the man he thought was for all Americans.
As he stood outside the door of the convention center watching “all these white people” streaming in after he was removed, Anantha says he stopped believing Trump stood for everyone.
“When I saw him on TV, I personally didn’t mind his rhetoric,” he told the local Charlotte Observer. “I defended him. When people called him a racist, I said he’s a critic of our flawed immigration system. He’s strong on Islamic terrorism.”
“Obviously now I’m very angry. I’ve wasted a bunch of time coming here. I may have wasted six months of my life supporting Donald Trump, who doesn’t even let me come to his rallies,” the young collegiate added.
Jake’s father Ramesh Anantha, who also counted himself as a Republican, says his son’s ardor for Trump made him go “whoa!” before the incident. “It’s unbelievably ironic… he should have been looked at as a perfect Trump supporter. He should have been somebody they’re putting up on stage,” said Anantha, whose parents migrated from India.
Now Trump has lost the votes of both father and son. Although they realize it was not Trump who ordered the removal, they maintain the candidate is responsible for the people he hires and the tone he sets.
“It was a very rude introduction into the world of politics,” said Anantha, who works in financial services. “We realize Donald Trump himself had nothing to do with this problem, but it’s the type of campaign he’s running.”
Explaining the run-up to the incident, Jake Anantha said he had been waiting near the stage just before Trump arrived when a security staffer tapped his shoulder and asked him to come with him. He says the staffer told him, “We know who you are. You’ve been at many other rallies.”
Anantha, who registered to vote in March this year, told him he never been to another rally in my life. “I’m a huge Trump supporter. I would never protest against Trump,” he says he explained. But it did not help. He was turfed out.
“I do think it was because I was brown,” Anantha said.
Asked whether he would continue to support Trump, Anantha said he will not “go to the other side,” and later posted on his Twitter page that he would vote for Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson.