What’s worse than a bunch of journalists and celebrities griping or falling on their fainting couches over whether they could attend a function President Trump would also be attending? Those same people complaining that the president won’t be there.
That’s right. Before the president announced on Twitter that he would not be attending the “fundraiser” fête next month, there was a lot of speculation over who would and would not decide to join in this year because of the media and Hollywood’s decidedly anti-Trump stance.
From The Hill:
Trump’s presidency has divided Americans, and celebrities have generally sided against him.
Questions about whether big stars would show up were being raised even before Bloomberg, Vanity Fair and The New Yorker pulled the plug on their usual dinner-related parties.
Members of the media have also been asking themselves if they should show up at a dinner for a president who has called the press an “enemy of the American people.”
Trump will be the first president to skip the event since Ronald Reagan in 1981, who was still recovering from being shot by Jodi Foster devotee, John Hinckley, Jr..
The whole thing is rather silly. Every year the news media does the thing they say they’re never supposed to do and makes themselves the news. They’ve even coined it “Nerd Prom” in some bizarre homage to the idea that they’re all just a bunch of geeks finally getting their moment to shine.
It’s a night for journalists to get dressed up and hobnob with celebrities they fawn over and the politician-in-chief they cover daily.
The president has always shown up to be mocked or adored, depending on the party affiliation. It’s usually good for a few laughs, but it mostly just skeeves out anyone who likes a healthy distance between the fourth estate and the government.
This year, the idea of the new president who calls the press “the enemy of the American people” made regular attendees and the event’s coordinators worry that many in both the journalist and celebrity categories might choose to skip this year.
However, the moment Trump said he wouldn’t be going the audible gasps and how-could-he’s began apace, splitting the attendees into two camps. According to The Hill:
The “we don’t need Trump” crowd sees the president-less gala as a way to “free people up to do the dinner in a way that’s more true to its original purpose,” said a current WHCA member who’s not involved in the planning.
“There’s a sense of proud defiance,” within that group, according to the same person. “People are saying it wasn’t the attendance of the president that bestowed some type of legitimacy on this event.”
The other side views it differently, that “without the gravitas of having the president there, it’s likely to lose some of its luster, people may not pay as close attention to it, the celebrities may not come, and it just won’t be as much as like an A-list, set-your-calendar event as it’s been for many years,” the member said.
What all of this really sounds like is a condescending group of people who are upset that the president is denying them of their chance to grandstand.
Either journalists and celebrities would stay home and say, “I’m sorry. I just couldn’t in good conscience join in no matter how worthy the cause,” or attend and affect a sacrificial attitude about how much they care about journalism. Which even the coordinators agree hasn’t been focused on its true purpose for awhile:
“We really lost a sense of why we have the dinner,” [WHCA board member, Julie] Mason said. “This feels like an opportunity to refocus on the prime mission of the Correspondents’ Association and the dinner.”
Well, now Trump has afforded the association it’s chance to find it’s purpose again.
The whining over Trump dumping the nerd prom this year is a bad look. And let’s be honest, what they’re really upset about is that Trump snubbed them first.