Trump Has a Weird Hatred for Braille, Apparently
He once reportedly told an architect "no blind people are going to live" in Trump Tower.
Photo by DOMINICK REUTER/AFP/Getty Images
Among the many things Donald Trump seems to hate (wind turbines, Hillary Clinton, the "Fake News Media," Kristen Stewart cheating on Robert Pattinson), he harbors a few bitter grudges for no discernible reason. The guy can't stand dogs and has a weird thing against sharks, for instance—and, inexplicably, it looks like he's also firmly anti-braille.
According to a column published in the New York Daily News Wednesday by Barbara Res, a former Trump Organization executive in charge of construction, he once flew into a rage after spotting the reading tool on an elevator in Trump Tower. He reportedly demanded that his architect remove it, which is not only (a) weird and (b) discriminatory, but also (c) completely illegal. From the Daily News:
Trump looked at the panels where the buttons you push to reach a floor were located. He noticed that next to each number were some little dots.
“What’s this?” Trump asked.
“Braille,” the architect replied.
Trump told the architect to take it off, get rid of it.
“We can’t,” the architect said, “It’s the law.”
“Get rid of the [expletive] braille. No blind people are going to live in Trump Tower. Just do it,” Trump yelled back, calling him weak.
The first thing worth noting here is that Trump apparently had no idea what braille was. But that doesn't seem outrageous, given the guy has said people are born with a finite amount of energy and doesn't seem to know the difference between HIV and HPV or napalm and Agent Orange. What's more baffling, though, is why he would be virulently against something so innocuous and objectively helpful.
According to Res, the story indicates one of many ways Trump bullied people over the 20 years she worked for him.
"Ordering an underling to do something that was impossible gave Trump the opportunity to castigate a subordinate and also blame him for anything that 'went wrong' in connection with the unperformed order later," Res wrote. "A Trump-style win-win."
But the story also seems to indicate that Trump has long been the kind of person who would mock a reporter's disability, who would get sued for discriminatory housing practices, and who would stick to his baseless hatred of something, even if that means making life harder on those more vulnerable and disadvantaged. These kinds of stories no longer feel surprising, but that doesn't make them less disturbing.
Sign up for our newsletter to get the best of VICE delivered to your inbox daily.
Follow Drew Schwartz on Twitter.