Melania Trump faced backlash after she offered “our thoughts and prayers” to the victims of the coronavirus pandemic in a tweet on Friday:
Our thoughts & prayers continue to be w/ each person suffering & fighting to recover from this terrible virus, & with all of the families who have lost loved ones. Even though we are physically apart, we are all in this fight together.
— Melania Trump (@FLOTUS) April 24, 2020
Critics slammed the first lady’s post, noting the slow and haphazard way in which her husband’s administration has handled the public health crisis that has now killed more than 52,000 people nationwide.
President Donald Trump downplayed the risk posed by the virus for weeks and has since taken to hyping unproven and potentially deadly cures during his daily coronavirus task force briefings.
The U.S. is now the epicenter of the pandemic with more than 925,000 confirmed cases. Worldwide, the contagion has sickened more than 2.8 million people and killed almost 200,000.
The criticism of the tweet echoed that leveled at political leaders who often call for “thoughts and prayers” following deadly mass shootings, but then fail to enact any meaningful gun control measures.
Some called for the president to show empathy for those who had died or lost loved ones during the outbreak.
No, no we're not. Over 50,000 dead Americans because that genocidal gaslighting ghoul you married for love, of course, brushed it off as a hoax and a flu. Now It has suggested that maybe people can inject disinfectant and UV rays to kill it.Your empty words are toxic too. #BeBest
— Lesley Abravanel🆘 (@lesleyabravanel) April 24, 2020
Oh please… pic.twitter.com/hv8yLJ5pc7
— JB Maberry (@jbm85363) April 24, 2020
Not that I believe the sentiment, would you mind asking your husband to express something similar at even one press conference… to show an ounce of humanity?? https://t.co/yatrjNgXnR
— Cathal Kennedy (@CathalKennedy1) April 24, 2020