Spike Lee Is The One Who Told Obama About Charlottesville Violence
In the interview, Lee reveals that he broke the news of the August 2017 Charlottesville nationalist protest to President Barack Obama.
“I said, Mr. President, did you hear what happened in Charlottesville? He hadn’t,” he recalled, noting that the former president was golfing near the director’s home in Martha’s Vineyard at the time.
After catching Obama up on the terrible events that left Heather Heyer dead, Spike said the former president couldn’t believe it.
“I could see on his face — that shock, It was Aug. 12, year of our Lord, 2017.”
After learning of Heyer’s death, Lee reached out to her mother, Susan Bro, to ask if he could include footage of the deadly incident in BlacKkKlansman. Bro agreed, and the events leading up to Heyer’s final moments made it into the film. Lee referred to Heyer as a “martyr” and heavily criticized Donald Trump for appeasing white supremacists after her tragic death.
“It was a defining moment and he could have said to the world, not just the United States, that we were better than that,” Lee added.
In his Time profile, Lee said that the nationalist protests — which he referred to as “homegrown, red, white and blue, cherry-pie terrorism”– opened a lot of people’s eyes to the fact that the type of racism depicted in his film BlacKkKlansman is very much alive today.