President Trump weighed in on the massive anti-white nationalist protest that took place in Boston on Saturday but it seems he had a bit of trouble getting his thoughts in order. His first instinct? Describe the anti-fascist, anti-racist, largely peaceful demonstrators that descended on Boston by the tens of thousands on Saturday as “anti-police agitators” while law enforcement officers were “looking tough and smart!” Shortly thereafter he sent another tweet in support of the police and even the city’s mayor.
Looks like many anti-police agitators in Boston. Police are looking tough and smart! Thank you.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 19, 2017
Great job by all law enforcement officers and Boston Mayor @Marty_Walsh.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 19, 2017
It seems someone may have whispered in the president’s ear that maybe characterizing all the protesters (including many with great sign game) as nothing more than anti-police agitators was not the greatest idea so he tried to send out a tweet that noted sometimes protests are necessary “to heal, & we will heal.” Except it took him three tries to get it right. The commander in chief wrote “heel” in two separate tweets first, which he quickly deleted.
Our great country has been divided for decades. Sometimes you need protest in order to heal, & we will heal, & be stronger than ever before!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 19, 2017
The president then seemed to do a complete shift from his initial tweets, writing to “applaud the many protestors in Boston who are speaking out against bigotry and hate.”
I want to applaud the many protestors in Boston who are speaking out against bigotry and hate. Our country will soon come together as one!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 19, 2017
The time span between the first “anti-police agitators” tweet and the applause for the anti-hate protesters? One hour and 19 minutes.
Boston police did confirm that protesters did throw rocks, “urine” and “bottles” at officers but Police Commissioner William Evans said those who caused trouble were decidedly in the minority. A total of 27 people were arrested, mostly from disorderly conduct and a few assaults on police officers. “99.9 percent of the people were here for the right reason and that’s to fight hate and bigotry,” he said.
#BPD is asking individuals to refrain from throwing urine, bottles and other harmful projectiles at our officers.— Boston Police Dept. (@bostonpolice) August 19, 2017
Evans increased the estimates of protesters who descended on Boston to 40,000, saying it was a “very successful day” for the city and police officers alike. “Overall I thought we got the First Amendment people in, we got them out, no one got hurt, no one got killed,” he said.