Ordinarily when one of President Donald Trump’s failsons say something stupid, it’s a safe bet to assume that his eldest son and namesake, Don Jr, is to blame. But in the true spirit of Trumpian competitiveness, it was little brother Eric Trump’s turn to shine! And by “shine,” I mean “casually drop an anti-Semitic dog whistle on his daddy’s favorite TV show.”
Sporting a valiant attempt at facial hair, Eric Trump appeared on Fox & Friends’ cursed couch to discuss being an independent businessman who definitely has nothing to do with his father’s administration. Just kidding, he was all politics: talking about midterm messaging, threats of impeachment, and journalist Bob Woodward’s bombshell new book on the Trump presidency.
And just what does the nation’s second son think about the book?
Here’s Eric (emphasis mine):
Don’t you think that people look through the fact that you can write a sensational nonsense book. CNN will definitely have you on there because they love to trash the president. It’ll mean you sell three extra books, you’ll make three extra shekels. At the behest of the American people, at the behest of our country, and a president that’s doing a phenomenal job by every quantifiable metric. I mean, is that really where we are?
Ah yes, “shekels.” A completely randomly chosen form of currency Eric is using here to connote both greed, and nefarious media influence—two pernicious stereotypes most commonly associated with, why, wouldn’t you know it, Jews! (Woodward is not himself Jewish, although his All The President’s Men co-author Carl Bernstein is.)
While it is, I suppose, possible Eric’s galaxy brain somehow pulled “shekels” from an entirely innocuous neural crevice in this instance, the fact that he used a well known anti-Semitic dogwhistle term has nevertheless been picked up by the internet’s slimy underbelly.
Eric has yet to publicly respond to the backlash against his usage of the term, although if his father is any indication, he’ll just call shekels “sheriff’s stars” and pretend like everything is totally fine.