The shooting at Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida and the ensuing activism by the teenage survivors of the massacre is still driving the news cycle, giving some people hope that this time might be different. President Trump held a “listening session” at the White House today with family members of victims slain in mass shootings including Columbine, Sandy Hook, Parkland, and others. It was at turns gut-wrenching, tense, and infuriating. At least it was for me, and it seems, those in attendance. It might not have been for President Trump, who had to have a little help—coaching, you might say—to appear like an empathetic human being.
Today, Donald Trump held a “listening session” with selected survivors and family members of victims of mass shootings.
Trump says he will be looking closely at the idea of arming teachers in schools https://t.co/alxyJFApE1
— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) February 21, 2018
Trump spoke briefly at the beginning and chimed in occasionally to offer his bright ideas on how to prevent school shootings (by arming teachers to the teeth or possibly committing people to mental hospitals).
An Associated Press photographer snapped a picture of his embarrassing cheat sheet with helpful notes on how to be a human being.
President Donald Trump holds notes during a White House listening session with students and parents affected by school shootings. (AP Photo by Carolyn Kaster) pic.twitter.com/Z0lZbSVaoF
— AP Politics (@AP_Politics) February 21, 2018
The cheat sheet reads:
1. What would you most want me to know about your experience?
2. What can we do to make you feel safe?
5. I hear you.
And Twitter roasted Trump accordingly for absolutely everything.
He seriously had to have a written reminder to say "I hear you." https://t.co/56U0TZx0cP
— Parker Molloy (@ParkerMolloy) February 21, 2018
An entire fake empathy photo op undermined by a shot of this inane cheat sheet. Sad! https://t.co/R000XQJ7nS
— Randi Mayem Singer (@rmayemsinger) February 21, 2018
"Mr. President, we put a few reminders on here. Like make sure you say, 'I hear you' and…"
"What is this one? Show emp-a-somethin'?"
"Well, it's when you…"
"Sounds like a stripper name. HAH! I love strippers. SARAH, GET ME A BIG MAC!!" https://t.co/rxy0DGkRBO
— Rex Huppke (@RexHuppke) February 21, 2018
— USA ?? (@SarahThyre) February 22, 2018
6. Resign https://t.co/81pnIFjeBj
— Nick Ross (@NickBossRoss) February 21, 2018
I think I found one of the paid actors we've been hearing about. https://t.co/jnXWP37KIy
— Jason Roeder (@jasonroeder) February 21, 2018
The worst part about this photo: pic.twitter.com/qsqZuOVrB4
— Kevin Biggins (@TheBiggIdea) February 22, 2018
Some people were wondering who—WHO—could have been the White House’s Chief Empathy Czar.
What sad actual human was forced to write down instructions for Trump to fake empathy?
— Tony Stark 2018 ? (@1IronMan2018) February 22, 2018
And Twitter had a wild theory about who that might be…