As harrowing reports from detention centers revealed the ugly realities of the Trump administration’s “zero tolerance” policy, public outrage intensified with many celebrities also speaking out against it.
Peter Fonda, also joined in but went too far with his tweet.
The Oscar-nominated actor went on a Twitter rant against President Donald Trump’s widely-resented family separation policy.
"WE SHOULD RIP BARRON TRUMP FROM HIS MOTHER’S ARMS AND PUT HIM IN A CAGE WITH PEDOPHILES AND SEE IF MOTHER WILL STAND UP AGAINST THE GIANT ASSHOLE SHE IS MARRIED TO. 90 MILLION PEOPLE IN THE STREETS ON THE SAME WEEKEND IN THE COUNTRY. F---," he wrote in a tweet, which has since been deleted.
Fonda’s all-capitals tweet, calling Trump an expletive and suggesting his son should be thrown in a cage promoted criticism.
Shortly after, first lady Melania Trump’s office contacted the Secret Service, alerting the agency about the tweet because it was particularly distressful for the POTUS’s wife.
“The tweet is sick and irresponsible,” said the first lady’s communications director, Stephanie Grisham.
Even Barron's older brother Donald Trump Jr. lashed out at Fonda by calling him a “coward” and a “bully” for attacking a 12-year-old.
You’re clearly a sick individual and everyone is an internet badass but rather than attack an 11 year old like a bully and a coward why don’t you pick on someone a bit bigger. LMK. https://t.co/8OhiQ0aZmO— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) June 20, 2018
Even White House Counselor Kellyanne Conway found the actor’s post “beyond chilling.”
Beyond. Chilling. https://t.co/Mz1vZ7svba— Kellyanne Conway (@KellyannePolls) June 20, 2018
Fonda, the “Easy Rider" star and younger brother of actress Jane Fonda later apologized for his tweet.
"I tweeted something highly inappropriate and vulgar about the president and his family in response to the devastating images I was seeing on television," he said in a statement. "Like many Americans, I am very impassioned and distraught over the situation with children separated from their families at the border, but I went way too far. It was wrong and I should not have done it. I immediately regretted it and sincerely apologize to the family for what I said and any hurt my words have caused."
Regardless, Fonda has been a vocal critic of the administration’s notorious policy.
In another tweetstorm, he suggested people opposing the border policy should track down the addresses of federal agents and “surround their homes in protest.”
“We should find out what schools their children go to and surround the schools in protest,” he added.
Meanwhile, there were some who pointed out Trump's reaction to Fonda's tweet was a glaring example of the double standards of the administration. Just the thought of having one of their own kids locked into cages prompted involvement of the federal law enforcement agency, but many questioned the government's conduct towards the kids who were actually taken away from the protection of their parents to be put into deplorable centers for an indefinite time?
Just this weekend, when the media reverberated with stories about the horrifying conditions in the child immigration centers, House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) celebrated father’s day while hundreds of dads were separated from their kids.
Banner / Thumbnail : REUTERS / Mario Anzuoni