The Wrestling Context For President Trump’s CNN-WWE Tweet
What the President decided to share certainly was newsworthy. Instead of his usual tweets and hashtags, the President included an edited video.
On the morning of July 2nd, President Donald Trump tweeted about the media. While this in itself isn’t that newsworthy, what the President decided to share certainly was. Instead of his usual tweets and hashtags, the President included an edited video.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 2, 2017
The video appears to show President Trump tackling a man in a suit with the CNN Logo over his head. Trump smashes the CNN-Man a few times into the ground and then walks away. The video appears to be from a professional wrestling event.
The Battle of the Billionaires
Trump took the video from Wrestlemania 23 and the “Battle of the Billionaires” a proxy match between Trump and WWE Chairman and CEO Vince McMahon. The two had been feuding in the build-up to the event, and each picked a wrestler to represent them in the match. McMahon picked Umaga and Trump chose now Impact Champion Bobby Lashley. Since both Trump and McMahon were very proud of their quaffs, the match would be “Hair vs. Hair.” Meaning that whoever lost the fight, would have their head shaved in the middle of the ring in front of the thousands of fans live and the millions watching at home.
The incident referenced took place during the match with Trump taking down McMahon. Here is the full, un-photoshopped context.
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As you can see, Trump was frustrated with McMahon’s attempts to rig the match. He took out his anger on McMahon by pummeling him into the ground.
Contrary to some people think it was NOT a body slam.
The President of the United States has posted a video of himself metaphorically body slamming CNN.
What is happening. https://t.co/NVxYpPpOO3
— BuzzFeed News (@BuzzFeedNews) July 2, 2017
THIS is a bodyslam
What Trump did was just a straight tackle and takedown.
*End of Brief Aside*
The crowd loved it! Trump and Lashley eventually won, and McMahon had his head shaved in the middle of the ring.
The Good Guy Always Wins
While the story changes every year, a common theme at Wrestlemania is McMahon, or members of his family (Stephanie and Triple H in particular) getting their comeuppance for all the bad deeds they’ve done. In the last four Wrestlemanias, Triple H and Stephanie have been either defeated or severely embarrassed to the delight of the crowd.
This is a classic wrestling trope. The “good guy” (and yes Trump was the good guy in this exchange) triumphs over the bad guy in the end.
Trump’s WWE career has been well-documented here and in the press. But never before has the President directly referenced it. I’m sure people who are against Trump will find it an outrageous call to violence and those who support him will laugh at the tweet and see it as Trump punching back against the media.
Now you have the context of what has become the most notorious tweet Trump has sent yet…at least until he sends out something else inflammatory.
Share your thoughts in the comments below