Just after President-elect Joe Biden appeared on national television and called on Donald Trump to take action to stop the riot taking place at the U.S. Capitol, Trump tweeted a short, seemingly hastily recorded video statement from the White House lawn:
In the statement—released as footage aired on every news network of insurrectionists smashing windows, hanging Trump flags from balconies, and posing in the House and Senate chambers—Trump spent precisely 19 seconds calling for “peace” and for “law and order.” He spent the rest of the statement, 43 seconds if you’re counting, complaining that the election was stolen from him, declaring he knows how the rioters feel, and demonizing his opponents. He ended it by telling the rioters—including that bozo carrying the podium, the dude pointing at his dick in Nancy Pelosi’s office, and the shirtless guy in the wolf hat—”We love you, you’re very special.”
Twitter took immediate action in response to this gasoline-flinging message from the president: Three minutes after it was posted (and retweeted more than 30,000 times), the company added the mind-bending warning that the tweet “can’t be replied to, Retweeted, or liked due to a risk of violence”—the kind of notice that makes it clear that everything is going great with your product. (Don’t worry, you can still quote-tweet it with an emphatic “This.”)
It would have been nuts to expect anything even vaguely statesmanlike from Trump, but this is still really bad! He is certainly having the time of his life today watching the fire he set flare up in new and exciting ways. Here’s hoping those very special rioters get home safe.
Update, Jan. 6, 2021, at 7:34 p.m. Twitter has removed the video and two other Trump posts and locked Trump’s account for 12 hours.