Melania Trump announced her “Be Best” signature initiative to help children in the areas of internet safety, well-being and opioid abuse. The left and right have wildly different views of the first lady and her new push.
How the left views Mrs. Trump and the ‘Be Best’ initiative
The article starts out as a “just the facts” news piece but the author slips in jabs nine paragraphs into the article.
The campaign rollout also arrived amid a series of damaging reports about the president’s alleged affair with adult film actress Stormy Daniels, who says she was paid to keep quiet about a sexual encounter with Trump in 2006. Melania Trump has yet to publicly address the controversy, and the president has denied the allegations.
The first lady’s interest in tackling cyberbullying has drawn scrutiny, however, given her husband’s prolific use of Twitter as a tool to attack his political detractors.
HuffPo wasted no time digging on the first lady. While the lede and first supporting paragraph look like news, the next one goes full-on hit-piece:
Trump’s rare appearance before the press to announce a seemingly modest set of proposals is a reminder of the unique challenges she has faced as first lady, filling an arcane role fraught with gender stereotypes and a lack of definition, compounded by her husband’s extreme divisiveness and outsized penchant for chaos.
Originally not scheduled to attend, the president himself joined the first lady at the lectern, just one day after The Washington Post reported that the couple spend much of their time in the White House apart, leading mostly separate lives.
The first lady famously pledged early in her husband’s presidency to make combating cyberbullying a priority and has devoted some speeches and White House events to the subject over the past year. Predictably, her efforts have faced mockery at every turn — any mention of cyberbullying conjures her husband’s frequent Twitter tirades and ad hominem attacks.
HuffPo then turned their criticism not on Melania, but her husband. The case they attempt to make is that Mrs. Trump is doing the best anyone could considering how awful the president is.
Yet overall, Trump “has been, in her way, the best version of the first lady that she can,” given that she is dealing with “an impossible situation,” Brower said. And in distancing herself from her husband, she may be further reinventing the role of first lady and subverting public expectations of her, even in otherwise traditional tasks.
The Washington Post printed nothing about the initiative at the time of publication of this article
The New York Times posted an “announcement” article ahead of the first lady’s event, but offered no update or details after the announcement.
How the right views the first lady’s “Be Best” initiative
The article is entirely positive focusing on the initiative itself and not on the president and media impressions of him.
First lady Melania Trump on Monday unveiled her new platform of initiatives to help kids, saying her “Be Best” campaign will focus on addressing the well-being of children, social media use and opioid abuse.
“We can and should be best at educating our children about the importance of a healthy and balanced life,” she said during a speech in the Rose Garden, which was attended by President Trump.
The first lady said social media can both “positively and negatively” affect children.
“Too often it’s used in negative ways,” she said. “When children learn positive online behaviors early on, social media can be used in productive ways and can affect positive change.”
Trump has promised to tackle cyberbullying as first lady, hosting major online and social media companies at the White House earlier this year. She’s also brought that message directly to classrooms around the country.
The article mostly focuses on the initiative but 15 paragraphs in, it brings the president into the mix and criticism of the first lady.
In the past, Melania Trump, a 48-year-old former model, has faced criticism for speaking out against cyber bullying. After she denounced childhood online bullies, critics pointed to President Trump’s well-known propensity for name-calling and engaging in wars of words with his political opponents on Twitter.
The article is entirely positive about the first lady and her “Be Best” initiative.
She expressed her concern that in this day and age, “Children can be less prepared to express or manage their emotions and oftentimes turn to forms of destructive or addictive behavior such as bullying, drug addiction, or even suicide.” Mrs. Trump said she feels “strongly that as adults, we can and should BE BEST at educating our children about the importance of a healthy and balanced life.”
Mrs. Trump defined “BE BEST” as:
…an awareness campaign dedicated to the most valuable and fragile among us — our children. There is one goal to BE BEST — and that is to educate children about the many issues they are facing today. If we truly listen to what our kids have to say, whether it be their concerns or ideas, adults can provide them the support and tools they need to grow up to be happy and productive adults who contribute positively to society and their global communities.
She said that every child deserves “every opportunity to enjoy their innocence. Every child should know it is safe to make mistakes and that there are supportive adults and friends nearby to catch them if they fall.”
The first lady said there would be three main pillars to her BE BEST campaign: well-being, social media use, and opioid abuse.
Mrs. Trump placed a great deal of responsibility on adults for teaching “children the importance of all aspects of [children’s] well-being, which includes social, emotional, and physical health.”
CNS News and Town Hall did not publish an article on the first lady’s initiative
The Main Street view of the first lady and her “Be Best” initiative
The media seems to have an odd obsession with tying Melania’s ideas to the president’s actions. They are two separate people. No one would blame my wife for my actions, no matter how dimwitted they may be. But, the Huffington Post and to a lesser extent, The Hill attempted to lessen Melania’s work to reduce cyber-bullying of children by equating it to the president’s attacks on political rivals. It is illogical to create parity between a politician attacking another politician, which happens all the time, with a child being bullied by other children.
Melania’s initiative to increase internet security for kids, help them emotionally and reduce the effects of opioid addiction on them is a good start on some tough problems.
While the media and swaths of American voters may not like Donald Trump, using Melania’s announcement to get a dig in at the president is a bit petty.