More than fifty people are dead as a result of the Las Vegas shooting, more than five hundred people are injured, and there’s nothing anyone can do to change that – but Americans are now looking for leadership and wisdom in the face of the tragedy. Instead, Donald Trump bizarrely tweeted his “warmest condolences” and then largely disappeared for the rest of the day. On Tuesday he took another swing at addressing the shooting, but stuck his foot in his mouth far more severely.
This time around Trump tweeted “It is a “miracle” how fast the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police were able to find the demented shooter and stop him from even more killing!” His intentions here appeared to be on the up-and-up for once. He was trying to credit law enforcement for having quickly hunted down the shooter in a high-rise hotel. It was heroic and impressive. But when this many people are dead, there’s no “miracle” involved. Trump could not have picked a more tone-deaf word. It gets worse.
Considering that Trump posted the “miracle” tweet more than a day after the shooting, he had plenty of time to think it through first, yet he couldn’t seem to figure out why that word might have been the last thing people were looking to hear. This wasn’t a one-off gaffe, either. Trump posted another tweet on Monday which didn’t specifically mention the shooting, but said that he was “proud” of America. There are plenty of times to be proud of your country, but on a day like that? It was completely the wrong sentiment.
Donald Trump also made similar remarks while trying to praise the (belated and disastrous) federal response in Puerto Rico. He simply seems incapable of understanding what human feelings and emotions are, or what shouldn’t be said at any given time. Even when Trump occasionally tries to sound like a leader, he instead ends up sounding like an alien – or a sociopath.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report