Mika Brzezinski, co-host of MSNBC’s Morning Joe program, delivered a nationally televised fit against President Trump on May 20, following it up by repeatedly calling for Trump’s Twitter account to be eradicated. Twitter promptly rewarded Brzezinski for her rant by granting a meeting with CEO Jack Dorsey to discuss her desire to have the sitting president of the United States banned from one of the largest social media sites in the world.
‘Just Because You’re Mad at Joe’
The president has a tendency to bring up the young female intern who was found dead in 2001 in the congressional office of a certain Republican representative – Mika’s current husband and co-host, Joe Scarborough. Brzezinski used this as the starting point of her tirade but quickly veered off in a scattershot direction. “He’s tweeting again, all sorts of crazy things … once again tweeting conspiracy theories about Joe,” she began. Then it got weird. “That’s sick, Donald, you’re a sick person,” Brzezinski continued. “To do this just because you’re mad at Joe, because Joe got ya again today, because he speaks the truth, and he speaks plainly about your lack of interest and empathy in others, and your lack of ability to handle this massive human catastrophe, the fact that you’ve made it worse, and that you make it worse every day, and that you won’t even wear a mask to protect people from your germs.”
Scarborough and Brzezinski are widely known for heavily criticizing Trump on a daily basis on their MSNBC show. Scarborough routinely labels Trump a racist and white supremacist whose presence in the White House poses a threat to democracy. Brzezinski has declared the president a “sexist pig” and, in 2017, accused him of “sexually harassing” Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) by criticizing her on Twitter.
Despite this vitriol, Brzezinski sees Trump’s verbal attacks on her and Scarborough as a violation of Twitter’s policies and is calling for Dorsey to “take down Trump’s account.” “I will be reaching out to head of twitter about their policies being violated every day by President Tump [sic],” the MSNBC star added in a tweeting spree later in the day. “@twitter need to know why trump is not banned?” another tweet read. “A call is being set up with @jack and [Twitter General Counsel Sean Edgett],” she finally posted a short time later.
In the span of only a few hours, then, a big-box media news star was apparently able to arrange a meeting with the chief executive of one of the two most prominent social media sites on the internet to discuss eliminating the account of a man that over 60 million Americans voted to put into the White House. This is where we are in the worlds of journalism and social media goliaths today.
Taking Her Words at Face Value
On February 22, 2017, only a month after Trump had assumed office, Brzezinski offered up a now-infamous quote during the usual Morning Joe assault on the new president. “Well, and I think that the dangerous, you know, edges here are that he is trying to undermine the media, trying to make up his own facts,” she said of Trump. “And it could be that while unemployment and the economy worsens, he could have undermined the messaging so much that he can actually control exactly what people think. And that is our job.”
At the time, Brzezinski insisted that her words had been distorted. But like many chronic Trump critics, she is obsessed with the horrifying notion that the political outsider has served as a wrecking ball to the dominant media’s long-standing ability to craft the national news narrative. In January 2019, she went so far as to urge major television networks to refrain from airing a Trump presidential address to the nation on the crisis at our porous southern border.
“Done right, a night-time Oval Office address can unite the country in trying times. It can inspire the better angels in ourselves,” Brzezinski bloviated. Then she added:
“But all the signs here indicate that is not what Donald Trump has in mind. And the networks have a decision to make. Do they want to run the promise of more lies, more misleading statistics, more twisting of reality, mindless confrontation, all for the sake of defending Trump’s dark, twisted fantasy of a wall on the Mexican border to fight an enemy that doesn’t exist, except in the most fevered swamps of American politics – do they want to do that for ratings?”
“You know, it’s a powerful argument, Mika, and I think a lot of people probably agree with you,” a subdued Scarborough replied.
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