A recent announcement from First Lady Melania Trump—part of her Be Best online bullying initiative—drew more outrage and backlash than praise. The official White House website issued a statement for the press and public which Trump shared on Twitter.
In her tweet, Flotus Melania Trump stated:
“Looking forward to collaborating with all of our #BeBest Ambassadors. Delighted to be working alongside so many people both inside and outside of government to better the lives of children everywhere!”
Looking forward to collaborating with all of our #BeBest Ambassadors. Delighted to be working alongside so many people both inside and outside of government to better the lives of children everywhere!https://t.co/VXxwgg6DFz
— Melania Trump (@FLOTUS) June 24, 2019
A quote included from FLOTUS’s statement made clear:
“I am thrilled that we have identified and partnered with so many organizations both inside and outside of government to help promote and expand the three pillars of BE BEST. As we move into the next phase of my initiative, I look forward to the work ahead.”
“There is no greater opportunity than that of helping children reach their fullest potential as they grow up.”
With the recent revelations about conditions of migrant children held in government concentration camps due to the Trump administration zero tolerance policy, a Department of Justice official arguing in court that migrant children do not require beds or basic toiletries and the deaths of at least six children in United States government custody, people were not buying Trump’s concern for the “lives of children everywhere.”
Some exclusions may apply*
* brown children
— Stella (@Credit4bigsalad) June 24, 2019
Is this White House seriously sending out this “be best” bs while children are being tortured? If @FLOTUS wants to help children face challenges, get them the f*ck out of these torture chambers!
Whew! I’m Beat! https://t.co/yJ22WzDI4z pic.twitter.com/OVzmyh4CIK
— Tiffany Cross (@TiffanyDCross) June 24, 2019
— Ed, Erica, & the SLP Aristocats (@charbonneau_ed) June 24, 2019
Do any of those #BeBest ambassadors want to stand up for the children currently in concentration camps near our borders?
— skibby (@LBIstarfish) June 24, 2019
Note: Does not apply to tortured kids at the border.
— NoTrumps-or-FordsClub (@NoFordsClub) June 24, 2019
Some Trump supporters did attempt to promote the new FLOTUS announcement, but got immediate pushback.
Nice to see Melania take the initiative in her role as First Lady. She possesses the soft power necessary to greatly help this country.
— David Schwartz (@DSchwartzWithU) June 24, 2019
List one thing she’s accomplished as FLOTUS. Just one. I’ll wait.
— Rev. Derek Reynolds (@theonederek) June 24, 2019
— dlynnd (@dlynndhaem) June 24, 2019
People told the FLOTUS what would improve the lives of many children.
Get rid of the camps at the border. The children there need care also!
— Michele Hofherr (@itzchel) June 24, 2019
Please start this initiative at home with your husband. That would be best don’t ya think?
— Rose (@rosemary1153) June 24, 2019
You have NO RIGHT to speak about bettering the lives of children anywhere….If you want to do something, tell your husband not to put children in cages at our borders. #ChildConcentrationCamps
— Joe Caruso (@jokerusso) June 24, 2019
How about expanding your campaign to better the lives of those children that your sugar daddy put in concentration camps? Maybe some food, soap, medicine for them? Help reunite them with their families? Blankets? Toothpaste? #TrumpsAbuseChildren
— Cece 🏳️🌈 (@cecemusic50) June 24, 2019
Why aren’t you at the border, up in arms that your husband has put defenseless children in Kiddie Koncentration Kamps?
— Mr_Scorpio (@Mr_Scorpio) June 24, 2019
They drag out her pitiful initiative every time the treatment of children at the border is brought up. Like we’ll be distracted or fooled by this.
— Heart of Fire (@rev_sturdivant) June 24, 2019
Others criticized Melania Trump for being tone-deaf.
The tone deafness and sociopathic behavior from everyone in this administration is staggering sometimes.
— Dana Goldberg (@DGComedy) June 24, 2019
— Claudia K Sargent (@ckswarriorqueen) June 24, 2019
You are so out of touch, it actually leaves me speechless
— Jill S (@jillpolitical) June 24, 2019
— Laura Ehrig 🌎💙 (@LauraEhrig) June 24, 2019
A team of lawyers interviewed and reviewed the conditions of children at a concentration camp in El Paso, Texas.
Holly Cooper, co-director of the University of California Davis’ Immigration Law Clinic, reported:
“In my 22 years of doing visits with children in detention, I have never heard of this level of inhumanity. Seeing our country at this crucible moment where we have forsaken children and failed to see them as human is hopefully a wake up for this country to move toward change.”
Meanwhile, Trump Department of Justice representative Sarah Fabian argued before a panel of stunned federal judges that children do not need blankets, beds, toiletries, sleep or adequate care to be considered “safe and sanitary.”
Sarah Fabian. Never. Forget. Her name. She’s the one who argued refugee kids don’t need soap, toothbrushes or a bed. Stephen Miller must be her spirit animal. pic.twitter.com/MezFskyWij
— Scott Dworkin (@funder) June 23, 2019
To learn more about the complicated relationships between President Trump and the major women in his life, past and present, the book Golden Handcuffs: The Secret History of Trump’s Women, available here, offers some insight.
“Nina Burleigh, explores Donald Trump’s attitudes toward women by providing in-depth analysis and background on the women who have had the most profound influence on his life—the mother and grandmother who raised him, the wives who lived with him, and the daughter who is poised to inherit it all.”