Back on July 11, 2017, Donald Trump blocked me on Twitter after I tweeted at him:
“If you take healthcare away from 23 million Americans, you must also give up your healthcare until those Americans have coverage.”
In terms of the kinds of things I was tweeting at him at the time, this was actually fairly benign.
Still, he blocked me.
On August 29, 2018 – one day before the start of my twentieth years of teaching – Trump was forced to unblock me and 41 others after we won our case in court as a part of the Knight Foundation’s lawsuit.
I immediately sent out this tweet:
Since that day, I tweet at Trump regularly. I do so for a few reasons:
- Millions of dollars were spent on my behalf as a part of the lawsuit, so I feel obligated to make use of the freedom that I was granted.
- I believe in speaking truth to power.
- It makes me feel good.
- Hundreds of people over the past two years have emailed, messaged, and tweeted to me, expressing appreciation for my willingness to criticize and insult Trump, wishing they had the willingness and gumption to do the same.
All good reasons to point out Trump’s ignorance, racism, laziness, corruption whenever possible.
“The President uses his account to speak to the public, not to give members of the public a forum to speak to him and among themselves,” the petition reads.
This is great news for a couple reasons:
- I have a chance to be part of a lawsuit that may go all the way to the Supreme Court.
- Our criticism is bothering Trump. He doesn’t like it. He wants it to go away. Our words are hurting the whiny, little man-child.
What a loser.
As a critic of Trump, I get my share of unkindness on the internet, too. Angry Trump supporters, lowlife trolls, and other cretins of the digital underworld fire off less-than-clever insults about my last name, my political leanings, and my obvious blindness to the brilliance of their great leader. I almost never see these sad, digital jabs. If you want to avoid them, Twitter makes it very easy.
So I do.
But Trump sees the words of his critics constantly because he sadly trolls his own Twitter feed for compliments that he can retweet to followers.
“A person with six followers said that I’m the best President ever!”
“Hey, everyone! @KittyKatLady322 says that I look great in a suit!”
“Thanks, @RedSox4Eva! I appreciate your support!”
This is what the President of the United States does. It’s how he spends his time. He scrolls through the comments on his tweets, desperately seeking validation. Searching for kind words that he can show other people. Bragging about anonymous compliments from random Twitter users.
Unfortunately, in doing so, Trump exposes himself to criticism. He is confronted with tweets like mine, which point out his abject failure to manage the pandemic. His constant lies about crisis in our country. His unwillingness to speak out against the bounties placed on American soldiers in Afghanistan by Vladimir Putin. His policy of family separation and the caging of children on the border. His collusion with the Russians in order to steal the 2016 election. His attempts at collusion with the Ukrainian President to steal the 2020 election. The $41,000 in legal fees that he was forced to pay this week to porn star Stormy Daniels, to whom he paid hush money to conceal their affair. His constant stream of racism, sexism, and xenophobia.
Much, much more.
So now Trump is back in court, attempting to block me yet again. His chances of success are almost nil according to the Knight Foundation, but in petitioning the court, he reminds me and those like me that our words are working. Our criticism is being heard. It is making him sad and angry and frustrated.
I couldn’t be more pleased.