While the Trump administration has been obsessed with erasing the accomplishments of former First Lady Michelle Obama, they have not been nearly as diligent with making any of their own.
Two years after the launch of First Lady Melania’s “Be Best” initiative, it’s unclear what — if anything — the program has accomplished.
CNN’s Kate Bennett reports that “Be Best” ends its second year with “few of the objectives announced at the first anniversary accomplished” and “continues to exist without specific policy or legislation goals, and most of its accomplishments in terms of advancing funding for children’s issues under the banner of ‘Be Best’ come via partnerships with programs that already exist within the federal government.”
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The original vision for the program was focused on fighting cyberbullying — an ironic goal indeed since her husband is the most prolific cyberbully in the country — along with combating the opioid epidemic and a vague promise to improve the “well being of children.”
At the one-year anniversary of the program start, First Lady Melania promised an “expansion” of the three pillars, but Bennet notes that “there was no definitive follow-up on what that would entail, nor was there a significant addition of events or remarks over ‘Be Best’s’ second-year aimed directly at addressing the issue.”
The White House claims that the First Lady has “met with” 4,000 kids and toured nearly 20 hospitals. She has held just one overseas trip; a second one was announced last year but never actually happened. While the program is supposed to be focused on stopping cyberbullying, Melania has held less than ten events focused specifically on the subject.
Today, @FLOTUS celebrates the two year anniversary of #BeBest, her initiative dedicated to bringing awareness to issues that impact the lives of children. Congratulations, and thank you! https://t.co/3jM5GfSvfg pic.twitter.com/dvh1MnzcFK
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 7, 2020
As Trump’s first term comes to an end, Melania’s legacy is one of absence and reluctantly fulfilled obligation. It pales in comparison to the vibrancy and passion of former First Lady Michelle Obama, who became a national icon for her tireless fight for girl’s education across the globe, healthy meals for kids here in America, and encouraging exercise in America’s youth.
While they may have succeeded in repealing her historic school lunch program, the Trumps can seethe with the bitter knowledge that Melania will never measure up to the standard set by Michelle.