After the president labeled Baltimore “a very dangerous & filthy place” that is “rat and rodent infested mess” and where “no human being would want to live,” the residents of Charm City and many others refused to let that slander lie and came to the city’s defense.
This all started after the president dropped a series of tweets Saturday morning attacking Democrat Rep. Elijah Cummings, who represents Maryland’s 7th Congressional District, which includes West Baltimore. Perhaps more importantly, Cummings is also the chairman of the House Oversight Committee, which has launched several investigations into the Trump administration.
The president, angered by Cummings’ criticisms about conditions at the border and inspired by a Fox & Friends segment, tried to compare conditions at the border to the city of Baltimore, which is predominantly black.
“Rep, Elijah Cummings has been a brutal bully, shouting and screaming at the great men & women of Border Patrol about conditions at the Southern Border, when actually his Baltimore district is FAR WORSE and more dangerous,” the president tweeted Saturday.
“His district is considered the Worst in the USA as proven last week during a Congressional tour, the Border is clean, efficient & well run, just very crowded,” the president continued.
“Cumming District is a disgusting, rat and rodent infested mess. If he spent more time in Baltimore, maybe he could help clean up this very dangerous & filthy place.”
So folks took to Twitter to condemn Trump’s attacks and praise the city with the hashtag #WeAreBaltimore. Several people pointed out that the president has a habit of spewing barely veiled racist vitriol at black and brown elected officials and their communities.
White House reporter April Ryan, who at one time had to hire a bodyguard after her many battles with the Trump administration, spilled all the tea about the disgusting state of the White House and suggested that the president knows his vermin from firsthand experience.
Then she called on Twitter to make #WeAreBaltimore a trending topic.
And Twitter obliged. According to the Hill, by Saturday night, the hashtag had been used over 17,700 times.
David Simon—former Baltimore Sun reporter and creator of The Wire, one of the greatest TV shows of all time that laid bare the beauty, the heartache and the humanity of the city–had a few choice words for the racist-in-chief as well.
“If this empty-suit, race-hating fraud had to actually visit West Baltimore for five minutes and meet any of the American citizens who endure there, he’d wet himself,” Simon tweeted.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), a Baltimore native whose father served as mayor of the city, also came to Cummings’ defense.
But it was the Baltimore Sun’s editorial board that came with the fire in its response to the president. In an editorial titled “Better to have a few rats than to be one,” the paper reminded the president “that the 7th District, Baltimore included, is part of the United States that he is supposedly governing. The White House has far more power to affect change in this city, for good or ill, than any single member of Congress including Mr. Cummings. If there are problems here, rodents included, they are as much his responsibility as anyone’s, perhaps more because he holds the most powerful office in the land.”
It went on: “It’s not hard to see what’s going on here. The congressman has been a thorn in this president’s side, and Mr. Trump sees attacking African American members of Congress as good politics, as it both warms the cockles of the white supremacists who love him and causes so many of the thoughtful people who don’t to scream.
“President Trump bad-mouthed Baltimore in order to make a point that the border camps are ‘clean, efficient & well run,’ which, of course, they are not — unless you are fine with all the overcrowding, squalor, cages and deprivation to be found in what the Department of Homeland Security’s own inspector-general recently called ‘a ticking time bomb.’”
And then the Sun laid down the hammer:
Finally, while we would not sink to name-calling in the Trumpian manner — or ruefully point out that he failed to spell the congressman’s name correctly (it’s Cummings, not Cumming)—we would tell the most dishonest man to ever occupy the Oval Office, the mocker of war heroes, the gleeful grabber of women’s private parts, the serial bankrupter of businesses, the useful idiot of Vladimir Putin and the guy who insisted there are “good people” among murderous neo-Nazis that he’s still not fooling most Americans into believing he’s even slightly competent in his current post. Or that he possesses a scintilla of integrity. Better to have some vermin living in your neighborhood than to be one.
Of course, the president, who loves doubling down like a drunk gambler at a blackjack table, was up early again on Sunday, watching and quoting pundits on Fox & Friends while continuing his attacks on Rep. Cummings and Baltimore.
The one thing we can rely on with this president is that he will always be consistent...and racist.