What is shocking is not that Donald Trump can use overtly racist phrases but there are people who won’t call him out because he is ‘the president’.

What began as a few Tweets (it normally does) evolved into something more sinister. And this week we saw something that was akin to a fascist rally – a crowd of people joyfully shouting ‘send her back’ as Trump talked about congresswoman Ilhan Omar.

Trump didn’t name his targets in the original tweets, but he was aiming them at four Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, Rashida Tlaib and Ayanna Pressley.

He then went to paint them as America-hating and Communists.

And to rub more salt into the wound he himself believes that it wasn’t racist at all.

Both Boris Johnson and Jeremy Hunt condemned him for his use of language – but stopped short of saying it was racist. Because doing so would ‘harm’ diplomatic relations in the future.

But here is something to think about. If someone like Tommy Robinson was to have stated these points in this country would we have a debate as what constitutes racism and what doesn’t?

To tell a minority to ‘go back home’ is one thing that we can relate across the Atlantic. It comes from the experiences either as children growing up in the seventies and eighties and those of our parents when they first set foot in Britain.

It boils to down to the following. It doesn’t matter if you are born here and have lived here all your life - we do not care what you have done and what you have contributed to this country you are the wrong colour and religion so must therefore be made to feel inferior.

The problem is this - Trump is simply pushing the line further and further and what was racist before is slowly becoming quite acceptable to some folk. Once it is said and it is out there who is to say you can’t say something else?

Even more worrying, we have seen TV shows and commentators debating whether this is ‘racist’ or some clever ploy by 'lefties’.

One broadsheet writer even suggested that people of colour should be more grateful to the country they reside in.

What it points to is this - we are slowly lurching to a new level of acceptable racism. I wouldn’t blame Trump for this. I would blame those who applaud him.