18:36 GMT29 September 2020
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    The ongoing Republican National Convention has re-nominated incumbent US President Donald Trump and his vice president, Mike Pence, for the presidential ticket in the 2020 November election.

    Charlie Kirk, a pro-Trump student activist and a founder of Turning Point USA, called US President Donald Trump a "bodyguard of western civilization" during a speech at the beginning of the Republican National Convention. 

    "Speaking to you in my personal capacity tonight as a 26-year-old, I see the angst of young people, as well as the challenges facing new parents. I am here tonight to tell you, to warn you, that this election is a decision between preserving America as we know it, and eliminating everything that we love [...] We may have not realized it at the time, but Trump is the bodyguard of western civilization", Kirk stated.

    ​The phrase "bodyguard of western civilization" immediately caused waves on Twitter, with netizens hardly believing their ears and "noping" out of the convention hardly after it began. It did not take long for users to mock Trump and his political platform. 

    ​Others saw the phrase as a "code" for "white people", and slammed both Kirk and Trump for racism.

    ​Some were quick to identify a cultural reference, comparing America to Whitney Houston, while citing the critically-panned but extremely profitable movie 'Bodyguard' in which she co-starred with Kevin Costner.

    Kirk, an enthusiastic Trump supporter, founded his conservative student organisation, Turning Point USA, which describes itself "to identify, educate, train, and organize students to promote freedom". He often appears in campaign-style events with the president.

    Kirk's speech opened the Republican National Convention, with other speakers including Matt Gaetz, Donald Trump Jr. and Nikky Haley expected to join.

    The Republican National Convention is taking place from 24 to 27 August, with Donald Trump re-nominated as the Republican presidential candidate. He is expected to deliver an acceptance speech on Thursday evening, the final night of the convention.

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    Charlie Kirk, Republican National Committee (RNC), RNC, Donald Trump, US
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