Climate justice activist Greta Thunberg made history on Dec. 11 when she became the youngest-ever person recognized as TIME's Person of the Year, and she received widespread praise for the activism that won her the honor. But not everyone was thrilled about Thunberg's achievement. President Donald Trump's tweet about Greta Thunberg winning TIME's Person of the Year honor actually went on the attack against the teen activist. But Twitter thinks Trump should have checked his own glass (white) house before throwing proverbial stones at Thunberg.
"So ridiculous," Trump tweeted about Thunberg being recognized as Person of the Year. "Greta must work on her Anger Management problem, then go to a good old fashioned movie with a friend! Chill Greta, Chill!"
Thunberg — a 16-year-old activist from Sweden — was quick to respond, but she was much more subtle than Trump. Shortly after Trump's tweet, her followers noticed she had changed her bio to read: "A teenager working on her anger management problem. Currently chilling and watching a good old fashioned movie with a friend."
The big problem? It had been barely a week since White House figures claimed children and teens should be off limits in political discussion, and particularly political attacks. On Dec. 4, first lady Melania tweeted out, "A minor child deserves privacy and should be kept out of politics." The first lady tweeted this statement after a law school professor invoked her son Barron's name during an impeachment hearing to make a point that the president cannot create an American aristocratic class. "While the president can name his son Barron, he can't make him a baron," Stanford law professor Pamela Karlan told the House Judiciary Committee. Melania tweeted, “Pamela Karlan, you should be ashamed of your very angry and obviously biased public pandering, and using a child to do it." The White House did not immediately respond to Elite Daily's request for comment on the apparent disparity or accusations of hypocrisy, but Trump's critics are now wondering why this same courtesy does not apply to Thunberg.
Other Twitter users also alluded to the White House's Be Best awareness campaign, launched and spearheaded by first lady Melania. This campaign advocates for the wellbeing of young people and aims to end cyberbullying. These Twitter users wondered why Trump didn't appear to apply Be Best's principles of social and emotional health in his interactions with young people like Thunberg.
In addition to describing Trump and his administration as hypocritical, Twitter users slammed the president for mocking Thunberg's work to raise awareness about the international climate crisis. A global rise in carbon emissions — largely generated by humans — has threatened and devastated communities and ecosystems around the world, and Thunberg and other youth activists have called on governments to take action on this issue.
Thunberg, meanwhile, is clearly undaunted by the attacks she has received from Trump and her other critics, and seems to have no intention of slowing down in her activism for a healthier and safer planet.