When Melania Trump delivered her infamous 2016 speech where she, or whoever had written it, plagiarised much of what Michelle Obama had said years earlier, the world was shocked. However, since then Melania has remained under the radar on the plagiarism front, until now that is.
Launching a new campaign around online safety for children, Be Best, Melania released a booklet offering advice on how parents can guide their children into being more positive online. However, texts from the booklet look suspiciously similar, if not identical, to a booklet released under Michelle Obama, for a campaign called Be Better.
Since commentators picked up on the similarities, the White House have re-issued the booklet, initially billed as being ‘by First Lady Melania Trump and the Federal Trade Commission’ to now being by the ‘Federal Trade Commission booklet, promoted by First Lady Melania Trump’.
However, the White House has not taken the attempt to hold the government to account well, issuing a statement that accused ‘opposition’ media of taking ‘a day meant to promote kindness and positive efforts on behalf of children, to instead lob baseless accusations towards the First Lady and her new initiatives.’
The initiative was launched on Monday, aiming to not only promote the positive use of social media, but also healthy living (and also, strangely, combat opioid abuse). It’s not the first time that Melania’s choice to tackle cyber-bullying has resulted in scandal, as it has long been considered hypocritical given her husband Donald Trump’s online antics.
However, the White House has continued to evade questions around the ironic choice of work. Whether Melania will follow their lead and ignore this second plagiarism scandal is yet to be seen, but chances are she’ll stay quiet for a while given the backlash she received for the first attempt...
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Michelle Obama at the The Grammy Museum's Jane Ortner Education Award luncheon - July 16, 2014