The ‘shithole’ fallout

In case you missed it, Trump referred to Haiti and African countries as 'shithole' nations. Thanks to Ali Vitali at NBC News for that recap.

And this morning, he appeared to deny the 'shithole' slur while defending a 'tough' immigration stance, NBC News’ Adam Edelman wrote.

CNN’s Don Lemon reacted with a tweet that many Muck Rackers shared: "He is a racist ... but it's more important to be strategic than outraged.”

And a good many people shared Anderson Cooper’s emotional tribute to the people of Haiti, which begins: "Let me be clear.... the people of Haiti have been through more, withstood more, fought back against more injustice... than our President ever has.”

If you’re interested in How News Outlets Handled It, read Michael M. Grynbaum in the New York Times. He also observed, “President Trump is expanding the news media’s vocabulary, one obscenity at a time.” While David Uberti admitted, “Most journalists I know can’t go 10 minutes without saying fuck or shit—even salad-eaters like me.” Andrew Beaujon tweeted the full quoted they got from Marty Baron: “When the president says it, we’ll use it verbatim. That’s our policy. We discussed it, quickly, but there was no debate.”

According to the Washingtonian’s Benjamin R. Freed, the Washington Post said of the word: “When the President Says It, We’ll Use It Verbatim.”

Speaking of the Washington Post, Eugene Scott there put together a list of Trump’s history of controversial remarks about nonwhite immigrants.

Elsewhere at the New York Times, David Leonhardt insisted Time to Say It: Trump Is a Racist. “We cannot know his private thoughts. But his behavior is clear, and we shouldn’t be afraid to admit it: President Donald Trump is a racist,” Leonhardt elaborated on Twitter.

Trump’s visit to London was called off amid fears of mass protests, Heather Stewart reports in The Guardian.

But good news, Trump did Signal Openness to North Korea Diplomacy in a recent interview, Washington Post’s Michael Bender writes. Bender kind of freaked out about it on Twitter: “POTUS suggests he has a relationship with Kim Jong Un … and that the pair MAY BE TALKING.”

Erica Orden shared this snippet from the interview: “I probably have a very good relationship with Kim Jong Un, ” Mr. Trump said in an interview Thursday with The Wall Street Journal. “I have relationships with people. I think you people are surprised.”

For a full Transcript of Donald Trump’s Interview With The Wall Street Journal, well here it is.
In news that’s unrelated to Trump’s racism, Thomas Frank from BuzzFeed filed this piece - Secret Money: How Trump Made Millions Selling Condos To Unknown Buyers. Mark Seibel called it “An exhaustive look at Trump’s condo sales, dating back to the 80s,” then assured, “You’ll find [it] interesting.”

Shady AF  

For absolutely no reason we can possibly think of, Merriam-Webster’s Word of the Day this morning was Reprehensible.

‘Just share your head’

Ashley Parker, Philip Rucker, and Josh Dawsey a the Washington Post take on Trump’s ‘ping-pong’ on surveillance law, which they say set off a 101-minute scramble. Josh Dawsey particularly loved this quote from the piece: "You just shake your head and laugh a little bit."

AP News’ Raphael Satter reports that a cybersecurity firm says the US Senate is in Russian hackers' crosshairs. The  AP expanded on this in their tweet: Cybersecurity firm says the same Russian government-aligned hackers who penetrated the Democratic Party have spent the past few months laying the groundwork for an espionage campaign against the U.S. Senate.” So that’s terrifying.

‘Meaningful interactions’

Facebook Overhauls News Feed to Focus on What Friends and Family Share, Mike Isaac reported at the New York Times in what is sure to send a shiver down many news publishers’ backs today. Isaac tried to soften the blow on Twitter: “happy new year! Facebook is undergoing a company-wide overhaul to prioritize “meaningful interactions” between your friends and family, beginning with the news feed.”

Walmart is abruptly closing Sam's Club stores and laying off thousands of workers, and no one knows why according to Hayley Peterson at Business Insider. “WAIT WHAT ABOUT.... YOU JUST GAVE EVERYONE A RAISE "BC TAX CUTS"... AND JUST... WTFFFFFF,” Linette Lopez tweeted, freaking out. Meanwhile, Bob Bryan dramatized the situation quite well, “Walmart this morning: We're giving everyone pay raises and bonuses! Walmart this afternoon: We're also closing a slew of Sam's Club stores and laying off thousands.”

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