Tiny Fingers Turn to Twitter Fingers
A liberal analysis of “The Donald’s” Twitter presence.
Avid Twitter users like myself and (the slightly more popular) Chrissy Tegan know that it’s borderline impossible to scroll the pages of one’s timeline without bumping into the infamous “Donald.” Whether or not an individual follows him, he can be difficult to ignore. Donald Trump boasts over 25 million followers, a number which grows by about 100 thousand each day. Celebrities and friends alike will often retweet, favorite, or reply to his controversial tweets. His presence is an enormous one, and can only be avoided by “muting” or “unfollowing” his account. Now, the election of our forty-fifth president brings into question a never-before-seen issue: Should the President of the United States be so active and vocal on social media?
Initially, President Trump garnered “huge,” support by tweeting his every thought, suspicion, and accusation; however, we are seeing a “tremendous” fall in support for his social media presence, as followers and former supporters cry out to him to “stop tweeting,” as pictured below:
Moreover, we should question not whether Trump’s tweets are upsetting, but why they are having such a visceral effect on the public. Regardless of the content, which ranges from petty nonsense to derogatory slurs, it has come to my attention that people are extremely worried about the frequency of these tweets. As the highest member of political office in the United States, many believe that a president should have higher priorities than writing and posting his opinions on social media. According to TwitterCounter, @realDonaldTrump (he refused to take over the @POTUS handle and instead chose to retain his personal account) sends out about 6 tweets per day. The same source also states that Trump’s tweets have earned “an audience attentiveness score of 78%,” which is extremely high and indicates that President Trump is commanding monumental attention on the site. Even from the Oval Office, this former businessman and entertainer is continuing to showcase his strength in these fields, namely by investing in his exemplary presence on social media.
So, what exactly is wrong with these tweets? Let’s take a look.
- They’re egotistical. President Trump makes a very strong point of patting himself on the back whenever possible. Whether he’s shouting his own campaign slogan or flaunting his public support, such ardent shows of self-promotion are ostentatious and tasteless.
2. They’re irrelevant. “The Donald” tends to tweet out “fluff” information; in other words, things that don’t need to crowd the Twitter-verse, and especially don’t need special, presidential attention. Doesn’t the leader of a country have more pressing tasks than to inform the entire internet of his RSVP?
3. They’re divisive. From referring to his immigration act as a “ban” on “bad and dangerous people” to questioning and ridiculing the decision of a seasoned member of the Judicial Branch, this tweet in particular does nothing but create cultural and political divergence. Also — someone give this man a thesaurus. I am sure he can do better than “bad and dangerous.”
4. They’re powerful… unfortunately. In today’s society, Donald Trump’s opinions are law. His comments can shape the stock market and scald his enemies; now, he has taken to Twitter to declare certain news sources as “FAKE NEWS.” Such rash language has a great effect upon which networks are viewed and which are ignored, therefore decreasing the amount of exposure with which we as American’s are provided and reducing our well-rounded knowledge on the issues. Make no mistake — A powerful tweet is a dangerous one, especially when it is emotionally charged and/or biased.
5. They cry for approval. By commencing tweets with a desperate cry of “hope you like my ________…” President Trump reduces himself to a heaping mass of attention and approval hungry Cheeto-dust, topped with an unsightly toupee. At least here, he’s tooting somebody else’s horn for a change.
There is, however, something to be argued in support of a President who is so well connected with his people. Many supporters have explained that they feel as though they are more involved and informed because of these tweets, and therefore appreciate Donald Trump’s dedication to the Twitter-verse. Obviously, there will always be discrepancies about politics, and such conflict lives and thrives on social media platforms such as Twitter.
No matter how you feel about Donald Trump, it is important to analyze and understand the impact of his social media presence. He is the first of his kind; Trump’s direct and unprecedented communication style is paving the way for presidents to come. Will others follow in his footsteps? Will The President of the United States shift from an untouchable entity in a mahogany chair to a real human being who can be reached and addressed in an instant 140 characters or less?
Only time will tell.
Looking to do your part? One way to get involved is to read the Indivisible Guide, which is written by former congressional staffers and is loaded with best practices for making Congress listen. Or follow this publication, connect with us on Twitter, join us on Facebook, or check out our shop on Threadless.