Charlottesville's vice-mayor slammed U.S. President Donald Trump's response to the deadly violence that transpired in his Virginia city over the weekend, saying Trump placing blame on both white nationalists and counter-protesters "shows who he really is."
Trump is "playing the blame game like a 10-year-old," Wes Bellamy told CBC News. "That comes to show what kind of leader and individual he is."
Bellamy has taken to referring to Trump as "45" instead of "president," an allusion to Trump being the 45th U.S. president.
"When he acts like [a president], I'll call him that," he said.
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"I'd rather not spend a lot of time discussing 45. I think it is more important to focus on the city of Charlottesville. What 45 does is not going to make or break our city."
Hundreds of counter-protesters gathered in Charlottesville on Saturday to decry a large gathering of white nationalists who descended on the city to oppose the decision to remove a Confederate monument.
Bellamy also praised Heather Heyer, the 32-year-old Charlottesville resident who was killed during the counter-demonstrations when a car drove into a crowd of counter-protesters.
"Ever since the age of nine, Heather has been a social justice advocate, an individual who spoke her mind," said Bellamy. "This is what we're going to continue to do — for her. We have to continue to push and fight."
Trump on Saturday said there was violence on "many sides," drawing criticism for not unequivocally condemning white supremacist groups. On Tuesday, he did condemn white supremacists explicitly but also doubled-down on blaming both sides and said "alt-left" protesters were also to blame.
Bellamy, however, placed the blame squarely on white nationalists.
"These individuals — white nationalists, white supremacists, whatever they want to identify themselves — these groups clearly wanted to send a message," he said, referring to the city's effort to take down the Confederate statue.
"These whiny little brats of the alt-right, they're like little children," he said. "Someone took what they believe are their toys, and they want to do anything they can to take them back. But they made us stronger."