First lady Melania Trump recently launched an initiative aimed to protect kids from bullying, but perhaps she should first spread awareness among people close to her and tell her husband, President Donald Trump, and her communications director, Stephanie Grisham, to #BeBest.
While the commander-in-chief’s tendency to attack reporters and media outlets is no secret, the first lady’s communications director made headlines this week after going on a Twitter tirade against White House correspondent and American Urban Radio Networks’ D.C. Bureau Chief April Ryan – whom Trump once infamously asked if she was “friends” with the Congressional Black Caucus.
Grisham’s social media meltdown began after Ryan tweeted a story titled “Is the Trump Administration Running a Child-Trafficking Ring or Nah? Follow Me Down the Rabbit Hole.”
The article from The Root focused on the many unfounded conspiracy theories the president and his cronies have promoted over the years, including the fake “Pizzagate” story about Democrats running a child sex trafficking ring that led to a right-wing activist opening fire in a D.C. pizzeria.
However, Grisham got so offended by the headline that she sent out a scathing tweet against Ryan without evidently bothering to skim through the article.
If you’re a journalist w many followers & a @CNNPolitics contributor...is it ok to retweet any headline you want, regardless of if it’s true? Remember: “The core purpose of a journalist is to research, document, write, & present the news in an honest, ethical, & unbiased way.” https://t.co/aVwSrnoio2— Stephanie Grisham (@StephGrisham45) May 27, 2018
Not one to hold back, Ryan responded to Grisham by asking if she had even bothered to read the story.
Really! Did you read the story? I guess not per usual. You and many in this admin work to discredit us in the press. What happens when you all tweet crazy stories. Where is the accountability there? https://t.co/tJHcv57uUM— AprilDRyan (@AprilDRyan) May 27, 2018
However, Grisham seemed too stuck on the headline.
Thanks April. I specifically referenced the headline that you retweeted w zero context, but ok. Hope you’re having a lovely weekend.— Stephanie Grisham (@StephGrisham45) May 28, 2018
Shortly after, Trump’s favorite news network, Fox News, picked up the story and called out Ryan for sharing an article linking the president to child trafficking – talk about irony!
Meanwhile, the CNN correspondent stood her ground and refused to be bullied.
And that is what I am talking about. Just reading headlines is not the story and you went after me for not knowing what the story was. Not cool! https://t.co/CIcjiYevcQ— AprilDRyan (@AprilDRyan) May 28, 2018
That fake news story from FOX and your not reading the story just a headline creates an atmosphere of hate against me that leads to ugliness. It has to stop! https://t.co/CIcjiYevcQ— AprilDRyan (@AprilDRyan) May 28, 2018
While it’s one thing to not agree with a journalist’s angle, it’s a completely different thing to publicly harass them for writing something you don’t agree with. What happened to the freedom of speech?
Perhaps this shouldn’t have come as much of a shock since Trump himself spent most part of his presidency and his election campaign trying to discredit media by labeling media outlets like CNN and NBC “fake news.”
The first lady’s communications director has not issued a statement on the matter as of yet.
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