DONALD Trump might not have coined the phrase ‘fake news’, but he certainly can be credited with popularising it. With all the lies told about him – Russian Collusion Hoax, Fine People Hoax, Drinking Bleach Hoax, to name a few – it is no wonder he got so much mileage out of the phrase. Even now, during his post-presidential days, the fake news about Trump continues to be told and exposed.
The most recent lie to be debunked: On June 1, 2020, Donald Trump had federal officers violently clear peaceful Black Lives Matter protesters from Lafayette Square in Washington DC so the then-president could be photographed in front of St John’s Church while holding a Bible. The mainstream media reported this as if it was an undeniable truth, and the predictable and recreational outrage ensued.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and then-Senate majority leader Chuck Schumer said in a joint statement: ‘Tear-gassing peaceful protesters without provocation just so that the President could pose for photos outside a church dishonours every value that faith teaches us.’
Senator Kamala Harris, now Vice President, said of the day’s events that Trump ‘gassed peaceful protesters just so he could do this photo-op, then he went on to teargas priests who were helping protesters in Lafayette Park.’
CNN’s Jim Acosta blamed the White House at a briefing for ‘gassing and pummelling protesters’ to pave the way for Trump’s photo-opportunity.
For the last year this falsehood has been one of the many arrows in the media’s quiver ready to sling during their daily Trump-bashing segments. Taking the media at their word, Black Lives Matter DC and a few other individual protesters decided to sue Trump in an attempt to cash in on this false report.
They tried, and failed.
Last week the lawsuit was dismissed by District Judge Dabney L Friedrich, who stated that the plaintiffs had not shown enough evidence in their case regarding the White House forcefully removing peaceful protesters from Lafayette Square. You can read her ruling here.
There was also a 37-page report from Interior Department Inspector General Mark Lee Greenblatt which concluded that the protesters were cleared out so a contractor could install ‘antiscale fencing in response to destruction of property and injury to officers’. Greenblatt also stated that officials ‘had begun implementing the operational plan several hours before they knew of a potential presidential visit to the park’.
As a result of these investigations, inadvertently spawned by themselves, the media have lost another weapon in their anti-Trump arsenal. If only they’d had the Lafayette Square incident officially fact-checked.
Thanks to the media (ironically), and much to their chagrin, history is being kind to Donald Trump.