Words by Erin Donnelly.
Melania Trump has raised a fair share of eyebrows since she launched her pet project, Be Best, because it aims, in part, to combat cyberbullying — with critics accusing her husband, President Trump, of being one of Twitter’s most egregious offenders.
But the first lady shrugged off charges of hypocrisy to promote her antibullying initiative during this month’s solo trip to Ghana, Malawi, Kenya, and Egypt. In addition to dropping off Be Best-branded tote bags laden with supplies at local schools, Trump made time during her trip to sit down for an exclusive interview with ABC News’ Tom Llamas.
While the full interview won’t air until Friday, previews of the discussion have already revealed FLOTUS’s take on #MeToo. Sexual assault survivors have objected to her comments that she supports women, but “also men,” and that women who report assaults need to be able to show evidence.
Now a newly released interview excerpt shows the first lady defending her work with Be Best for a personal reason: She sees herself as a victim of bullying.
EXCLUSIVE: First lady Melania Trump says her “Be Best” policy platform targeting online bullies is personal. “I could say that I’m the most bullied person in the world,” she tells ABC. https://t.co/iiEv5Z3ijv pic.twitter.com/CWZ7g9by27
— ABC News (@ABC) October 11, 2018
“I could say I’m the most bullied person on the world,” she told Llamas. “One of them — if you really see what people [are] saying about me.”
Though the clip doesn’t include questioning about her own husband’s image as a bully, the first lady has faced ridicule. Just a day after her interview with Llamas was filmed, she wore a menswear-inspired look in Egypt that was mocked by countless memes.
But is getting heat from the so-called fashion police comparable to the insults flung at, say, Christine Blasey Ford, who the president recently lambasted during a rally? Twitter users aren’t feeling so sympathetic.
The vile things that are said about Michelle Obama (and daughters), Hillary Clinton, Chelsea Clinton (who shows class and grace, daily), Dr. Blasey Ford…and all the kids who have taken their own lives have/had it MUCH worse.
Do something about your husband & Jr.
— Mrs. Bucky Barnes (@Idess_HaloStar) October 11, 2018
— Lynda Fright-Wright (@BroncoBaby10) October 11, 2018
Imagine if @MichelleObama said this & played the victim. Republicans would lose their minds. @FLOTUS Melania Trump says her #BeBest policy platform targeting online bullies is personal. “I could say that I’m the most bullied person in the world” pic.twitter.com/7uCQB7jInX
— Khary Penebaker, Fx (@kharyp) October 11, 2018
— Justin Hendrix (@justinhendrix) October 11, 2018
Puh-leeze. This is why 3/4 of US has no sympathy for Melania, and I certainly don't. I could make out an entire thread of people bullied more than her, but it's easier to say that her statement is the most absurd thing I've heard this week.
— LYNN (@Moonlitelynn) October 11, 2018
The full interview will air Friday.