On Saturday morning, President Donald Trump reached “a new low” when he wrote tweets criticizing San Juan, Puerto Rico mayor Carmen Yulin Cruz and the “workers” of Puerto Rico at large for their devastation after Hurricane Maria. His comments came less than a day after Cruz refuted his claims that he’d done an “incredible job” responding to the crisis.
Veteran journalist Dan Rather was among the many who believed Trump’s tweets kicking Puerto Rico while the territory is down were in retaliation for Cruz being “mean” to him.
“Excuse me, Mr. President but your tantrum tweet storm this morning attacking the mayor of San Juan, a fellow American citizen dealing with a real-time life and death struggle for hundreds of thousands of her constituents on an island of millions in crisis, is not only far below the dignity of the office you hold,” Rather wrote on Facebook Saturday morning. “It fails even the most basic test of humanity.”
“To take this personally is to put ego before country,” he continued. “And you also blame the Puerto Ricans themselves? That they want ‘everything done for them’? No. They just expect to be treated as any other American would.”
Trump’s oath of office, Rather said, entails “a responsibility to look out for all Americans, even if they live on an island in the ocean, or look different or even speak a different language than what you think is America.”
He also joined criticisms that Trump’s response victim-blamed those suffering from Maria’s after effects in Puerto Rico.
“What Puerto Rico needs now is not rhetoric but help, not a bumbling response, but the precision and competence we expect of our government,” he concluded. “I do not believe ‘blame the victim’ is what Americans expect of their president.”
You can read Rather’s entire indictment of Trump’s ego-fueled Twitter attacks below.