The Trumps are hardly models of integrity. Even still, Donald Trump Jr. found it nothing to attack longtime journalist Dan Rather on Twitter this week for his supposed failures on that front.
Rather’s original post attacked U.S. President Donald Trump for his incessant criticism of the American mainstream media as “fake news.” He quipped that he thinks the president just “can’t handle the truth,” writing:
‘Whenever I see President Trump rail against “Fake News” or call us the “enemy of the people” I think “you can’t handle the truth.” You may not like it, but the press is protected by the Constitution (you know that document you swore to preserve, protect, and defend?)’
Trump Jr. retweeted his post and in a caption posed the question:
‘Didn’t you lie to swing a presidential election? Self aware much?’
Trump Jr. is referring to the scandal over Rather’s presentation of faked documents on a September 2004 edition of 60 Minutes II. The documents lambasted then-President George W. Bush and were purportedly from the personal collection of the late Lieutenant Colonel Jerry Killian, who served as Bush’s commander in the National Guard in the 1970s. The faked documents went on the air just a short time before the 2004 presidential election; in short, they cast grave doubts on Bush’s conduct while serving in the National Guard.
The network defended their presentation of the materials for weeks before finally recanting and retracting their original story on September 20, 2004. In the aftermath of the incident, producers Mary Mapes, Josh Howard, Mary Murphy and others all left their positions with the network. Rather stayed on for a short while, but left early the following year.
In the end, news anchors make mistakes. They’ve made them while Trump has been in office, too. There’s a significant difference between mistakes that news anchors make and the lies about the nature of the media — and everything else — that the Trumps have peddled, however.
News organizations have acknowledged their mistakes when pressed. When CNN put up a story based on shaky at best information that cast Trump associate Anthony Scaramucci into question, they took it down, apologized, and a number of individuals left the network over the incident, as took place in the 2004 CBS scandal Rather was involved in.
Trump Jr. on the other hand has lied time and time again while maintaining through it all that he is in the right. Asked in mid-2016 about a Russian conspiracy to put his father in office, he blasted Democrats sounding alarms as willing to “say anything to be able to win this.”
As it turns out, however, not long before he made those comments, he and other Trump associates had met with Kremlin lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya for the express purpose of getting Russian government sourced dirt on Hillary Clinton. Confronted with claims of the Russian government seeking to knock Clinton down and elevate Trump, Trump Jr. exclaimed: “I love it!”
Dan Rather didn’t do anything like that. The Trumps just love their anti-media rhetoric, holding to it so desperately that they hope it will cushion them from all critical coverage. (It won’t.)
Check out Twitter’s response below.
Featured Image via YouTube screenshot