As It Happens

Professor live-tweets 'frightening' Donald Trump rally

Jared Yates Sexton went to a Trump rally in Greensboro, North Carolina on Tuesday and was shocked by the level of ugliness expressed by the presumptive Republican nominee's supporters - and the backlash he received after Tweeting about it.
Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally at the Greensboro Coliseum in Greensboro, N.C., Tuesday, June 14, 2016. (The Associated Press)

When Jared Yates Sexton decided to go to a Donald Trump rally in North Carolina this week, he knew it wasn't going to be a sedate garden party. But, what the university professor heard and saw there shocked him. 

"The thing that surprised me the most was how casual people were in terms of the ugly things that they were saying," Sexton tells As It Happens host Carol Off.

I actually heard one person in the crowd, in reference to the Orlando tragedy, say the gays had it coming.- Jared Yates Sexton

Here are some of the tweets Sexton sent out during the rally: 

Sexton says the Tweet he's come under fire the most for was this one:

Sexton defends his comparison to the famous Nazi rally.

"At some point a piece of operatic music began playing and the crowd broke into a spontaneous, very, very loud chant of 'Build that wall!'" he says.

"It created this strange feeling inside me. It felt very much like the footage I've seen from Nuremberg or some of the other big Nazi rallies." 

You can read Sexton's full account of the Donald Trump rally he attended here. 

For more on this story take a listen to our full interview with Jared Yates Sexton.