What’s Wrong with Trump’s Tweets?

It’s more than his tone and demeanor.

But the president’s tweets don’t provoke outrage merely because they’re colorful. The issue is that they’re often directed at inappropriate targets.

..  If the president brandished his characteristic tone and demeanor only for that stately purpose, none but rhetorical prudes would denounce the crudeness of his tweets. Unfortunately, Trump has devoted inordinate amounts of energy to mock and deride celebrities ranging from Megyn Kelly and Samuel L. Jackson to Ronda Rousey and Snoop Dogg.

.. In The Art of the Deal he writes, “A little hyperbole never hurts….It’s an innocent form of exaggeration — and a very effective form of promotion.”

.. Christ pegged the Pharisees as folk who “love the uppermost rooms at feasts” and “the children of them which killed the prophets” before marking them all as a “generation of vipers.” In a less eloquent, but equally effective lambaste, Martin Luther styledHenry VIII, King of England, as “a pig, an ass, a dunghill, the spawn of an adder, a basilisk, a lying buffoon” and “a mad fool with a frothy mouth.” Compared to either, Trump is a mere amateur at doling out verbal abuse.

.. The president, being a former entertainer, knows that his philippics will fall flat if his audience can’t grasp a crucial reference or allusion, so he makes frequent use of those figures that Americans easily recognize: actors, athletes, and TV news anchors—figures that hold an unduly large proportion of America’s national attention. If the average American knew the names of the thousands of peoples and groups that have nothing but a violent contempt for America and the American way, Trump would undoubtedly spend more of his time tweeting out hourly invectives against them instead of TV hosts (terrorists and tyrants make for easier targets). To a limited extent, the president’s choice to focus his vitriol on celebrities reflects the average American’s tragic ignorance of the people who actually threaten our national welfare.