With controversy following Donald Trump around like a bad smell, it is no surprise that much of the political media currently focuses on him. However, while his provocative behaviour is indisputably overshadowing, it is not only the Donald who has attracted heavy criticism of late but also the First Lady. Melania, who is subjected primarily to comments of a superficial or personal matter, has recently suffered from great backlash following the announcement of her ‘Be Best’ campaign; a platform fighting against problems such as cyberbullying and drug addiction.
The irony is clear when considering that she is married to someone who could arguably be one of the most prolific present-day cyberbullies. Famous for his tweets, the President has attacked his opponents, his contemporaries and in fact anyone he sees fit. Thus, it is not greatly unforeseen that many should take offence at the First Lady waging a war on cyberbullying.
Trump’s offensive Twitter outbursts stand in direct opposition to the tag line of Melania’s #BeBest initiative.
Cyberbullying, however, is not something to be taken lightly. It is a serious concern, affecting the lives of many, if not most, young people and having the potential for serious repercussions. While her motives may be unclear, with many suggesting the campaign is another weak and unfounded form of propaganda to galvanise the First Lady’s, and thus by proxy the President’s, reputation, any campaign which draws attention to such issues should be praised. Without dispute, if the reasons for the #BeBest are of a self-serving nature there is criticism to be made, but if you can disregard the individual and focus on the impact of her actions, there are many young people who could benefit significantly. As such, although I am not her, nor her husband’s, greatest supporter by any means, for this I commend Melania.
The main criticism, however, is not rooted in the cause of her actions but rather the irony of them. It is no secret, as I mentioned, that the President is known for his offensive twitter outbursts, which stands in direct opposition to the tag line of Melania’s #BeBest initiative. However, this is case of something we see all too often and never question. Melania may be of public importance because of the man she married, but she is, always has and always will be her own person, separate from her husband with her own opinions, morals and aspirations. Likewise, the President is his own person and has the freedom to act as he sees fit. I do not support his deplorable actions, but perhaps neither does his wife. You cannot expect two people who are married to bend in ways that aligns their every thought, and therefore lose any form of individuality. Melania’s actions are her own, as are Trump’s, so we should not hold her responsible for something he has done. This is obviously within reason and of course has exceptions. I simply am trying to suggest that we allow Melania to stand up for something which I hope she firmly believes in and is willing to fight for. Until she herself acts in way that contradicts this it is unfair to call it ironic. Perhaps, by some miracle, her campaign may even enlighten her husband.