Meet Johari Osayi Idusuyi, The Hero Known For Reading Poetry At A Trump Rally
Remember that amazing woman who was sitting in the crowd behind the podium during a Donald Trump campaign speech earlier this week? The woman who must havebeen terribly unmoved by Trump’s bloviating because she had her face in a book — specifically Claudia Rankine’s Citizen – the entire time, even after a older white couple chastised her? Here, let me remind you:
The internet loved this righteous display of no fucks given and wondered about the woman’s identity, why she was at a Trump rally in the first place, and if her decision to read a poetry book dealing in race and racism was an act of protest. Well, wonder no longer! Yesterday, Kara Brown at Jezebel got the lowdown directly from Johari Osayi Idusuyi herself. As it turns out, Idusuyi attended the Trump rally “with genuine intentions,” though she is not a Trump supporter, saying she and her friends “just wanted to go in with an open mind.” The small group, all people of color, were quickly ushered into the VIP seating behind the podium. “I think we were chosen for obvious reasons,” she told Jezebel. “We are minorities and there weren’t a lot of minorities there.”
Idusuyi immediately became turned off when she saw the bullying tactics Trump and his supporters directed at the few protestors in attendance, booing and heckling, with one person snatching an Obama hat off a female protestor’s head as she tried to leave.
“To hear 10,000 people cheer for something so disrespectful is what made me so mad. And that’s when I was like, I am now genuinely not interested in your speech. I wanted to leave, but I came, I’m in the middle, I’m on camera, so I might as well read because I don’t have anything else to do. I’m not going to waste my time listening to somebody who I can’t respect anymore, so I started to read.”
And read she did! Last night, Idusuyi appeared on “The Rachel Maddow Show,” and talked more about what went down, whether she brought along Rankine’s book for a specific reason, and how she feels about Trump now. Watch above!