Greta Thunberg Subtly Dragged Trump's Tweet About Her U.N. Speech

by Lilli Petersen
Alex Wong/Getty Images News/Getty Images // Drew Angerer/Getty Images News/Getty Images

Teens are the hope of the future, and if Greta Thunberg's example is anything to go by, there's plenty to be hopeful about. The Swedish teen activist has been holding politicians' feet to the fire over their inaction on climate change, and apparently, some of them aren't happy about her criticism. After President Donald Trump tweeted about Thunberg on Monday, Sept. 23, she turned his comments right back around, and Greta Thunberg's response to Trump's tweet is quite a power move.

On Sept. 23, Thunberg gave an impassioned speech at the United Nations Climate Summit that drew praise from around the world for its no-holds-barred condemnation of international inaction on climate change. "This is all wrong. I shouldn’t be up here," she told international leaders, at certain points seeming on the verge of angry tears. "I should be in school on the other side of the ocean. Yet you come to us young people for hope. How dare you. You have stolen my dreams and my childhood with your empty words." Shortly after the speech went viral, another moment caught the internet's eye, when Thunberg and Trump crossed paths at the U.N., and the 16-year-old activist was caught giving the president some major stink-eye.

It seems like one, or the other, of the moments caught Trump's own attention. Later that evening, he tweeted out a video of Thunberg's remarks, adding his own caption. "She seems like a very happy young girl looking forward to a bright and wonderful future," he wrote. "So nice to see!"

The irony, of course, is that Thunberg is clearly and unapologetically p*ssed at the inaction on climate change that she's calling out, not to mention the leaders responsible for the lack of forward movement. In October 2018, the United Nations released a report written by a panel of 91 scientists from 40 countries that warned there are only about 12 years left to limit the damage caused by climate change. The report warned of a huge climate crisis as early as 2040, and increased damage from natural disasters such as wildfires and storms, as well as food shortages and ecosystem destruction. So it's the denial of a bright and happy future, due to climate change, that Thunberg focused on in her speech. "We are in the beginning of a mass extinction, and all you can talk about is money and fairy tales of eternal economic growth," she said.

But Thunberg, apparently, didn't get angry about Trump's tweet — in fact, she turned the irony back on him. As of Sept. 24, Thunberg's Twitter bio describes her as, "A very happy young girl looking forward to a bright and wonderful future." Shadier than the forests she's working to save.

The sarcasm may be pretty choice, but Thunberg is hardly the first one to twist Trump's attempt at a burn back on him. Way back in 2017, Twitter's very own Queen Chrissy Teigen, who notoriously has her own beef with Trump, used the president's faint praise of his son Donald Trump Jr. to roast both of them by making it her own Twitter bio. Trump had attempted to defend his son Don Jr. as a "high-quality person" after the revelation he had attempted to set up a meeting with Russians to get dirt on Hillary Clinton during the 2016 presidential election. Apparently, Teigen thought it was the perfect descriptor. "Finally, a new bio," she tweeted out in July 2017, posting a screenshot of her bio which read, "high-quality person." (Sadly, Teigen has since rebranded as a "de-motivational speaker.")

President Trump is a lot of things, but I, at least, can say I never expected to see "Twitter bio writer" added to the list. But as far as political surprises of 2019 go, I'll take it.