Two days after her husband viciously mocked Joe Biden’s son Hunter for his struggles with substance abuse on the presidential debate stage, First Lady Melania Trump issued a strange PSA “honoring” “National Substance Use Prevention Month.” (We’re guessing she means National Substance Abuse Prevention Month.) Throughout the month of October, Melania promised to share “inspirational stories of youth… being their best by being drug-free.”
This video has everything: An awkward side camera angle that makes it look like she’s getting her glamour shot taken at the Paramus Mall circa 2003! Some of the most robotic talking-point recitation we’ve ever witnessed! A cutaway to Jim Carroll, Director of National Drug Control Policy! (Who?!) The #BeBest logo!!!
This October I am honoring National Substance Use Prevention Month by joining @ONDCP to highlight the dedicated efforts of our Nation’s youth to encourage healthy drug-free lives. Share how you are helping your community using #BeDrugFree – we look forward to hearing from you! pic.twitter.com/DiMTCsk9Si
— Melania Trump (@FLOTUS) October 1, 2020
Like many of Melania’s “best” moments, this seems to be a giant troll. (According to our body language expert Patti Wood, “the underlying message she seems to be sending is, ‘I’m hiding things.'”) And while we are pretty sure she and her husband don’t exactly communicate much, they probably should have checked with each other before sending completely conflicting messages within the span of a couple of days. Because it was just this Tuesday that the president sent a much less compassionate message on substance abuse to the American public. During the debate, Biden referenced an Atlantic story that reported Trump had called members of the military “losers” and “suckers,” and brought up his late son Beau Biden and his military service in Iraq. (Beau, a former Delaware attorney general, died of cancer in 2015.)
Trump shot back, “I don’t know Beau,” and continued, “I know Hunter.” Hunter Biden has been a longtime target of the president: Trump’s pressuring of the Ukrainian government to gather damning information about Hunter is what ultimately led to his impeachment. “Hunter got thrown out of the military… He was dishonorably discharged — for cocaine use,” Trump continued. In fact, Hunter was discharged, but not dishonorably, after testing positive for cocaine.
Biden responded with support for his son: “My son, like a lot of people… had a drug problem,” he said. “He’s overtaken it. He’s fixed it. He’s worked on it. And I’m proud of him. I’m proud of my son.” Many viewers praised the former Vice President for opening up about Hunter’s struggles with and overcoming of addiction on a national stage.
And perhaps it’s people like that about whom Melania is thinking as she shares “inspirational stories” about addiction. We do truly hope that her campaign will make a difference in the lives of people who are dealing with substance abuse issues. But this doesn’t take away the fact that her husband, the president of the United States, mocked his opponent’s son who is a substance abuse survivor, to score cheap political points. Nor does it erase the fact that, after the debate, Donald Trump Jr. proceeded to call Hunter Biden a “crackhead” while appearing as a guest on a right-wing show. But none of that seems to matter much to Melania. She just doesn’t seem to care much. Do you?
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