The media has had big news about a big feud the last few days, with blaring headlines and clicky tweets shouting that President Trump called Meghan Markle “nasty.”
Reading those headlines one would be sure that he made some Trumpian comment about the Duchess of Sussex, unprompted and unwarranted, ahead of his big state visit. A regular “own goal” attempt to score on someone for no reason.
On Twitter, though, the Trump War Room disputed that story, calling it false and fake news in a slew of tweets. One, which included the actual audio (below), said this.
Fake News CNN is at it again, falsely claiming President Trump called Meghan Markle “nasty.”
The media, particularly CNN reporters, pushed back, there was back and forth, and on Sunday morning, Trump weighed in himself.
So what really happened? Well if you read the headlines, you may be surprised by the context.
Here is a transcript:
REPORTER: She can’t make it because she has maternity leave. Are you sorry not to see her, because she wasn’t so nice about you during the campaign. I don’t know if you saw that?
And here is the audio:
Fake News CNN is at it again, falsely claiming President Trump called Meghan Markle “nasty.” Here is what he actually said. Listen for yourself! pic.twitter.com/kLuPXBLMhf
— Official Trump War Room (@TrumpWarRoom) June 1, 2019
After the Trump War Room tweeted, the MSM treated it as their own goal for having proved Trump said what they said he didn’t say.
But if we can be real for a second, there is an obvious material difference between the implication that Trump went out of his way to insult the Duchess as nasty, and what actually happened.
Trump was confronted with her past criticism. He said he didn’t know that she was nasty toward him.
If you say something ugly behind my back, and I don’t know, and someone tells me, and I say “I didn’t know so-and-so was ugly that one time”, I’m not calling you ugly. I’m saying I didn’t know you said something ugly.
That’s more than obviously what happened here. Pitching a headline like “Trump calls Markle nasty” is disingenous at the least. At the most, it’s clickbait.
Trump characterized Markle’s prior behavior as nasty. “I didn’t know she was mean [to me].” The “to me” or “like that” or “in that instance” is not only very overtly implied as part of the sentence, he makes it even more plain whwen he says he thinks it’s nice that there’s an American princess and that she’ll “do excellently.”
“She will be very good,” he said.
It’s not really something that should require this degree of explanation. The media obviously tried to blow it up into some slam on Markle that it obviously wasn’t, and then played a game of Twitter dunking on the War Room for tweeting the context.
That is, again, not being a journalist. It’s being an activist, perhaps, or a click-monger.
Trump said “nasty.” It’s on tape. That’s a fact. The media characterized it as something that it wasn’t. That, too, is a fact. If there’s a media person out there reading this, instinctively siding against Trump and thinking to yourself “that’s exactly what he said, so we’re right” … I suggest you really look deep and ask yourself whether you’re being a journalist or a hater.