Oh, for shame! The Washington Post, The New York Times, the BBC, the “alphabets,” and virtually every other major news outlet is reporting with more than a hint of shock that Donald Trump will become the first president in 30 years to skip the vaunted White House Correspondents Dinner.
For an example of the kind of tsk-tsking that is trending big, here is CNBC:
Amid tensions between the White House and the national media about whether reporters are covering the president objectively, Trump said in a tweet that he would not attend the function—derisively referred to as “Nerd Prom”—on April 29.
Oh, the humanity!
To the network’s credit, the report includes the president’s tweet, which is fairly gracious:
I will not be attending the White House Correspondents' Association Dinner this year. Please wish everyone well and have a great evening!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 25, 2017
But what’s missing from all this finger wagging is that Trump didn’t cast the first stone. As LU noted via The New York Times, two of the regular annual big-name attendees — The New Yorker and Vanity Fair— announced in curmudgeonly fashion three weeks ago that they would not be holding their usual kickoff and after-parties, the obvious message being “What’s to celebrate?”
Vanity Fair’s editor, Graydon Carter, who has long had a had an adversarial relationship with Trump, told the Times, “We’ve taken a break from the dinner in the past.” But he was quick to emphasize that the reason this year had everything to do with Trump.
The question that arises is why Trump would want to get within a city block of the event. Consider, moreover, that the once-staid dinner has become a who’s who of Hollywood celebs, with A-listers showing up in their limos and finery. If you were the president would you really want to break bread with the likes of Ashley Judd, who declared in a Huffington Post video that the “tragedy” of Trump’s election victory is far worse than being raped:
Other celebrities will be assembling tonight for a Trump hate-in at the 89th Academy Awards in Los Angeles. When the message from the Left is so resoundingly and unremittingly negative, the president would have to be a glutton for punishment to attend the dinner.