A member of the Central Park Five, now known as the Exonerated Five, has created a T-shirt clapping back at the President Trump after Trump said he was the “least racist” person and has done more for the Black community than any president “with the possible exception of Abraham Lincoln.”
Following Thursday night’s final presidential debate, Raymond Santana, who owns the clothing line Park Madison, took to social media to showcase a new series of T-shirts encouraging people to vote, with one a direct jab at the president.
The T-shirt features an ad which the real estate mogul took out asking to bring back the death penalty in the 1989 case. The ads never explicitly called for the death penalty for the five teens, but Trump made it clear that the action he was calling for was done with the victim of the attack, Trisha Meili, in mind.
“I want to hate these murderers and I always will,” Trump wrote in the May 1989 ad. “I am not looking to psychoanalyze or understand them, I am looking to punish them.”
The T-shirt features the word “VOTE” and “Never Forget” across the ad.
During Thursday’s debate, the Central Park Five’s story came up as Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden brought up the fact that Trump wanted the five teens dead following the president’s comments about how he is the “least racist.”
“This is the guy who, when the Central Park Five — five innocent Black kids — he continued to push for making sure they got the death penalty,” Biden said. “None of them, none of them were guilty of the crimes that were suggested.”
Korey Wise, Yusef Salaam, Antron McCray, Kevin Richardson and Raymond Santana had years of their lives shaved off — imprisoned for a crime they never committed.
Trisha Meili was the victim of a gruesome rape in New York’s Central Park in 1989. In tabloids and newspapers, she came to be known as the “Central Park Jogger,” while the five teens accused of attacking her — Wise, Salaam, McCray, Richardson and Santana — were dubbed the “Central Park Five.”
In 2002, the five men convicted as teens were freed after the district attorney determined Meili had been attacked by Matias Reyes, who confessed to the crime. His admission was confirmed by DNA evidence. Meili was the second woman he raped and beat in Central Park that week.
The five boys were elsewhere in the park at the time of Meili’s attack, the district attorney’s office determined in 2002.
In 2003, the five men sued the City of New York for malicious prosecution, racial discrimination, and emotional distress. The city settled in 2014 with the five defendants for $41 million.
Trump in 2019 said he wouldn’t apologize for his comments made in 1989. “You have people on both sides of that,” he said at the White House. “They admitted their guilt.”
In 2019, their story was featured in the acclaimed Netflix series “When They See Us.”