Donald Trump apparently can’t help himself. And it is this lack of self-control that shrinks his personae and makes the presidency appear small.
Trump tweeted an old video of him taking on the WWE’s Vince McMahon, body slamming the CEO of the wrestling company, and hitting him repeatedly.
To underscore Mr. Trump’s war with the media, he superimposed the CNN logo on McMahon’s face. Here’s a sampling of media headlines about the tweet:
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 2, 2017
Juvenile? Yes. A “threat”? Not hardly. It appears that reporters have lost their sense of humor these days. Trump can’t even make a sophomoric joke without the media losing its mind.
A day after defending his use of social media as befitting a “modern day” president, President Trump appeared to promote violence against CNN in a tweet.
Trump, who is on vacation at his Bedminster golf resort, posted on Twitter an old video clip of him performing in a WWE professional wrestling match, but with a CNN logo superimposed on the head of his opponent. In the clip, Trump is shown slamming the CNN avatar to the ground and pounding him with simulated punches and elbows to the head. Trump added the hastags #FraudNewsCNN and #FNN, for “fraud news network.”
The video clip apparently had been posted days earlier on Reddit, a popular social media message board. The president’s tweet was the latest escalation in his beef with CNN over its coverage of him and his administration.
A White House spokeswoman with the traveling press corps hotel here in Bridgewater, N.J., a few miles from Trump’s golf club, declined to address questions about the tweet. Trump has no public events planned for Sunday; his schedule lists phone calls Sunday night with Chinese President Xi Jinping and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. He is scheduled to return to Washington on Monday evening and participate in an Independence Day event at the White House on Tuesday.
Buried in this WaPo story is the fact that the Trump White House did not create the tweet — that it was first seen on Reddit a few days ago.
So who is more immature? The press or the president? While Trump has crossed the line in previous tweets, the only thing that makes this one newsworthy is his recent tangle with CNN. Otherwise, poking fun at CNN by showing his “triumph” over their “fake news” is well within the bounds of political combat, although, as I said, juvenile in nature.
I see no need for anyone to defend Trump’s tweet. He’s not going to walk on egg shells around them and he shouldn’t. Still, it’s sad that almost every time Mr. Trump takes to Twitter, he diminishes himself and the presidency.