Has the President Donald Trump administration resorted to using intimidation to quell criticism?
Not quite, but some Trump-loving person(s) has.
According to The Independent, people have been receiving automated “threatening” messages urging them to stop posting “derogatory” remarks about Trump.
However, it seems the masterminds behind the robocalls are using the Ownage Pranks app.
The message begins with a male voice introducing himself as “Russell from the Citizens for Trump Foundation,” a grassroots group initiated during the 2016 presidential campaign. Alas, it is unconfirmed whether or not the group is really responsible for the calls.
“OK, you’ve been warned. We’ll be keeping an eye on you,” the messages said, adding, “Have a nice day.”
One of the people who received the alarming call, Brett Vanderbrook of Dallas, Texas, reportedly said he felt the message “was kind of threatening.” “I was dumbfounded at first and then creeped out,” he added.
“We’ve been monitoring some of your posts and it does seem that you’ve been making some rather negative comments about President Trump,” the pre-recorded voice told Vanderbrook.
“Listen, we’re going to have to ask you to lay off on the negative and derogatory posts about President Trump, OK,” the voice continued.
While Vanderbrook admitted he posts often about political topics, such as gun control, immigrant rights, and LGBTQ rights, he said he didn’t feel any of his public posts were “derogatory towards the president.”
Reports of these calls began as early as July, and even some people in Canada have purportedly received them.
One of the recipients, Eric Wright, uploaded a recording and transcript of the voicemail to YouTube as a warning to others.
“It’s really shady...an older person like my grandma could believe it and thinks she’s being watched,” Wright said.
As awareness spreads of these sketchy calls, some people have resorted to registering their phone numbers in the National Do Not Call registry. However, these people may just be clever enough to bypass this obstacle.
While this is likely the work of some Republican civilian with too much time on their hands, it wouldn't come as much of a surprise if someone directly associated with Trump was behind it, considering all of the petty scandal his team has been embroiled in.
Banner/Thumbnail Photo Credit: Pixabay, terimakasih0