Amid the recent outrage surrounding her husband’s administration, first lady Melania Trump has found herself embroiled in scandal as she boarded a flight to visit an immigrant children’s shelter. Mrs. Trump’s wardrobe choice, a green jacket with the words “I REALLY DON’T CARE, DO U?” in white letters, sparked attention from the press as well as uproar on social media.
The $39 jacket is from last season’s Zara collection.
The Daily Mail was the first outlet to report on the jacket. The first lady was first spotted the wearing the jacket as she boarded a plane at Andrews Air Force Base. She removed the jacket when she first landed in McAllen, Texas; however, she donned it again when she landed back at Andrews, despite the outpour of attention it had received by then.
Mrs. Trump reportedly avoided questions from the press as she boarded the presidential motorcade. Her spokeswoman, Stephanie Grisham, came out with a statement stating that “there was no hidden message” in the first lady’s outfit choice. Grisham later took to Twitter to berate the media, stating:
“If the media would spend their time and energy on her actions & efforts to help kids – rather than speculate & focus on her wardrobe – we could get so much accomplished on behalf of children.”
Today’s visit w the children in Texas impacted @flotus greatly. If media would spend their time & energy on her actions & efforts to help kids – rather than speculate & focus on her wardrobe – we could get so much accomplished on behalf of children. #SheCares #ItsJustAJacket
— Stephanie Grisham (@StephGrisham45) June 21, 2018
As usual, the President was also rather vocal about the topic on Twitter:
“I REALLY DON’T CARE, DO U?” written on the back of Melania’s jacket, refers to the Fake News Media. Melania has learned how dishonest they are, and she truly no longer cares!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 21, 2018
All this happened only a day after the president signed an executive order banning the separation of immigrant children from their families after his administration came under fire for such policies. Notably, Trump himself stated last week that he was unable to resolve the crisis through an executive order. The White House has remained silent when asked what exactly changed these circumstances.
This is not the first time that the first lady’s wardrobe has courted controversy. She had also received criticism when she wore high heels to visit victims of Hurricane Harvey.
There has been a strong public outcry by many people on social media:
Let's get one thing straight: Melania Trump did not accidentally wear a $30 jacket she just happened to have around with all her other very expensive designer clothes on this trip.
This was intentional.
— Denizcan Grimes (@MrFilmkritik) June 21, 2018
#MelaniaTrump created the "Be Best" campaign and then wears a jacket that says, "I Really Don't Care." On her way to meet with immigrant children being held at border facilities. Cool, cool. I guess it was Opposite Day when she created that little ditty.
— Kiran S. (@subrawoman) June 21, 2018
The first lady reportedly made the trip down to Texas to speak with children and engage with staff at the center. According to the BBC, Mrs. Trump went around the center speaking with children, asking them how long they had been there and whether they were able to contact their parents often. Her words were said to sometimes be translated into Spanish.
According to CNN, a Republican with close ties to the White House stated that after the story broke out, the communications staff scrambled to find a way to downplay the scandal. Eventually, someone decided to say that the coat’s message was directed toward the media. The Republican reportedly calls this tactic “revisionist history.”
Nonetheless, the jacket does appear to send a mixed signal. If anything, it seems like a poor – if not careless – choice in the face of a situation in which thousands of families are being cruelly separated.
Featured Image Via Flickr/Marc Nozell