Sarah Palin, Kid Rock and Ted Nugent went to the White House to dine with President Donald Trump on April 19. While they were there, they mocked a portrait of Hillary Clinton.
Palin posted photos on Facebook with the caption, “A great night at the White House. Thank you to President Trump for the invite!” One of the images depicted the trio in front of Clinton’s portrait. “Nugent is pictured with a thumb-back, ‘get outta here’ gesture,” according to Bustle, “while Palin points to the photo with a look of disapproval. Kid Rock stands there with his arms folded.”
The decision made by the White House guests to take these disrespectful pictures in the first place is immature. There are many important and historical portraits and artifacts in the White House and acting in such a cavalier manner in one of the most respected establishments in the world is ill advised.
The decision to post them on social media, however, is even more ill-mannered. These pictures were intentionally posted to insult Clinton and to gloat over Trump’s election victory. This cannot be tolerated, and especially not encouraged, by the president.
When Trump was elected, many worried about his unprofessional attitude and this instance proves that there is a pressing cause for concern.
Clinton’s loss in the 2016 presidential election was only this past year, and while she removed herself from the public eye for a while, she handled her loss with dignity and pride. She focused on her supporters, encouraging them to continue standing for what they believe in.
“Obviously the outcome of the election wasn't the one I hoped for, worked for, but I will never stop speaking out for common sense benefits that will allow moms and dads to stay on the job," Clinton said to CNN.
Clinton has acted in a professional manner and has done nothing to deserve the public mockery brought on by Palin. Trump’s guests disrespecting her portrait for the world to see on social media, especially such a short time after the election, is distasteful.
Refinery 29 commented on the picture of Palin, Kid Rock and Nungent by saying, “She’s moved on from the election and is looking to the future, but (ironically) the same can’t be said for Trump and his most ardent supporters.”
In general, insulting a woman who has served in the White House in a myriad of roles—regardless of your political beliefs—is insupportable. Anyone who has dedicated their time to trying to make our country a better place deserves to have their official portrait treated with respect.
Maggie Haberman of The New York Times tweeted in response, “Doesn't matter what the political party is, it's the White House, not a rally, and it's an official portrait, not a cardboard cutout.”
While it is often accepted in our social culture to lightly poke fun at political figures, this was not what Palin and Trump’s guests did. This picture was malicious and posted with the purposefulness of offending Clinton and of aggravating her supporters.
Considering the current political climate, intentionally disrespecting a woman who has served this country is unacceptable. These individuals should be held accountable by the current administration.