President Donald Trump on Monday blamed the media for the growing “anger and rage” in the country in the wake of two mass shootings over the weekend, marking the second time he has criticized media coverage in the aftermath of a tragedy.
“The Media has a big responsibility to life and safety in our Country,” Trump tweeted. “Fake News has contributed greatly to the anger and rage that has built up over many years. News coverage has got to start being fair, balanced and unbiased, or these terrible problems will only get worse!”
The president’s suggestion that press coverage is to blame came after shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio, that took place within 24 hours of each other over the weekend.
A gunman killed 20 people and wounded dozens more in an attack at a Walmart in El Paso on Saturday. He allegedly wrote a racist, anti-immigrant manifesto before the attack, which described fears of a Latino “invasion” and references “fake news.”
Hours later, a gunman killed nine people and injured dozens more in Dayton.
Pundits and Democratic politicians alike have tied Trump’s own rhetoric describing the influx of migrants as an “invasion” and painting immigrants broadly as criminals.
The president has offered few public remarks on the shootings, other than to say “hate has no place” in the country. He tweeted Monday that Congress should tie legislation strengthening background checks for gun purchases to immigration reform, two issues that have stymied lawmakers in the pass.
Trump is set to deliver remarks at 10 a.m. Monday.
The president repeatedly rails against “fake news” when describing coverage he finds unfavorable. He has described certain outlets as the “enemy of the people,” despite warnings from lawmakers and media executives about the dangers of the term.
Trump also blamed the “Fake News Media” for causing “tremendous anger” in the country in the days after a spate of mail bomb threats against prominent Democrats and a shooting that killed 11 people at a Pittsburgh synagogue.
Several Democrats and media commentators have noted that prominent Fox News personalities frequently speak negatively about immigrants, and Trump often quotes those hosts on Twitter.
The Media has a big responsibility to life and safety in our Country. Fake News has contributed greatly to the anger and rage that has built up over many years. News coverage has got to start being fair, balanced and unbiased, or these terrible problems will only get worse!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 5, 2019
Twitter users were quick to respond to the president’s tweet:
fuck you, you racist pig. this is straight up your fault. shut the fuck up and accept your responsibility. i am sure you are smiling on the inside you goddamn piece of shit.
— Bjeralds (@bjeralds) August 5, 2019
You are a racist liar and you invited violence repeatedly. Leave the media alone.
— Alison Loukeh & Asso (@AlisonLoukeh) August 5, 2019
It has built up only since you were elected by the Russians. You perpetuate hate and violence. You ARE a racist. Fuck you and your blame game.
— Leon John (@Dawgfan4ever91) August 5, 2019
Unfucking believable! Unfortunately you and your 30% delude yourselves into believing this horseshit. None of these shooters voted for Hilary.
— Jamie Cherry (@jamiecherry55) August 5, 2019
Our country has been more divided over the last couple of years than ever before. YOU are the problem, not the media.
This is because of YOU.
Resign so that our country can begin to heal.
— lisastark35 (@lisastark351) August 5, 2019
Are you serious? You are so full of shit it’s ridiculous! You’re a coward and a pathetic excuse for a leader!
— Christopher Ramirez (@LiontamerC) August 5, 2019
BULLSHIT. It is YOU who’s responsible for all this anger and rage. Because you’re a sick twisted racist sociopath who only derives pleasure from the pain and suffering of others. Shame on you. This blood is on YOUR hands… #Trump #daytonshooting #ElPasoTerroristAttack
— Andy Ostroy (@AndyOstroy) August 5, 2019
It is not fake news when you are on camera spewing hate, divisiveness, and lies. This is your responsibility to stop. Stop blaming everyone else. You have contributed greatly to the anger and rage.
— Natalie Dolishny (@nataliedolishny) August 5, 2019
I don’t give a damn what Trump says in a scripted speech. He’s already shown us who he is. He’s demonized immigrants, stoked fear, peddled racism his whole presidency and before that. Latinos were hunted down like vermin. Trump has contributed to this climate. Vote him OUT, coño!
— Ana Navarro-Cárdenas (@ananavarro) August 5, 2019
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