By Ben Lewis
At 12:06 A.M. EDT on Wednesday, the following was Tweeted from Donald Trump’s personal account:
As of the time of this writing–over 3 hours later–the Tweet is still up, with no further comment or explanation from the White House. (UPDATE: The Tweet was finally deleted later Wednesday morning after having been live for more than 5 hours.) Unsurprisingly, hilarity has ensued on Twitter, and #Covfefe is easily the #1 trending hashtag. Here are just a few quick hits:
what makes me saddest is that I know I'll never write anything funnier than #covfefe
— Jimmy Kimmel (@jimmykimmel) May 31, 2017
— Jess (@WouldBeFamous) May 31, 2017
In this moment, he became Presfefe. https://t.co/CBrAiNDYwQ
— Brian Beutler (@brianbeutler) May 31, 2017
TRUMP (earlier): If you want to live in this country, you learn to speak English!
TRUMP (now): Covfefe
— Daniel Lin (@danwlin) May 31, 2017
Sure, I’ve laughed along. In the interest of full disclosure, I fully admit that I even joined in the fun myself:
— Ben Lewis (@benelou) May 31, 2017
Yes, some of the responses have been absolutely hilarious, and to some degree, it’s a welcome moment of levity in the midst of a tense political climate. However, there’s at least one aspect of this that isn’t funny in the least bit. To the contrary, it’s quite concerning. I saw it expressed thusly a few minutes ago:
This tweet (and the fact that it's still there) is no longer funny. https://t.co/JJ7r8G6Tmj
— Franklin Leonard (@franklinleonard) May 31, 2017
Yes, taking a step back from the humor, the fact is that over 3 hours ago, the President Of The United States attempted to communicate something to the world, was interrupted for reasons unknown to us, and no one has offered any further explanation. There’s been no reassurance to the nation and the world that the President didn’t have a medical crisis. No one has clarified the statement. Nothing.
What does this say about how communication is being handled in the White House?
Does it mean that no one is paying attention? Is there a standing order not to alter any of his communication without his consent? Has the Commander-In-Chief had a medical episode and the nation is being kept in the dark? Is job satisfaction so poor that the person responsible for helping control messaging is leaving the Tweet up to embarrass his or her boss? Is it that no one there realizes that by not addressing it, all of these questions and more are brought up?
No matter how you slice it, this isn’t good.