President Trump’s recent trip to the United Kingdom went about as badly as it possibly could have.
It didn’t take long for Donald to trash the sitting Prime Minister, accused the British media of being “fake news” for reporting on the things that he himself said in an interview, disrespected the Queen during their procession, and openly spouted white nationalist talking points in his complaints about the UK’s immigration policies.
His more flagrant acts of misbehavior were inevitably punctuated by his abrasive demeanor, his animating narcissism alienating all those around him with its overbearing demands for attention and validation.
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It’s no wonder then that Queen Elizabeth II felt the need to signal her displeasure and her regret at the American people’s latest choice of leader – and perhaps a jab at her sons for abandoning her with him.
The brooch she wore during Trump’s visit was an official gift from President Barack Obama and his wife Michelle during their visit in 2011. Known as the official “American State Visit Brooch,” the 4-karat yellow gold, diamonds and moss agate antique represented a very subtle troll that Donald Trump certainly did not pick up on, save perhaps a passing thought that the jewelry wasn’t large enough and didn’t have nearly enough gold.
The rudeness displayed by the President during his trip drew a sharp contrast to the friendly and warm display when meeting with Vladimir Putin a few days later, raising eyebrows around the world and once again had tongues wagging about what the Russian President might have on him to prompt such deference beyond his natural inclination to envy and emulate the authority of autocrats.
While the gesture may have been subtle, we can certainly empathize with the Queen’s gesture. While the horror and shock at Trump’s appalling policy decisions have grown slightly numb over time, it’s moments like watching him have difficulty walking in a straight line next to the Queen that really hit home what a vile ogre truly occupies the Oval Office.