President Donald Trump has been lambasted online after photos of his “crib sheet” for a discussion with survivors of school shootings went viral.
The White House audience was attended by survivors of the recent massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, as well as “parents of children killed in shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary and Columbine High School”, Sky News reports.
The handwritten side of paper, which was clearly visible to cameras, contained a list of five bullet points seemingly intended to guide the commander-in-chief through his meeting with students, parents and teachers affected by gun violence in schools.
Prompts on the sheet included “What would you most want me to know about your experience?” and “What can we do to help you feel safe?”.
The final pointer read, simply, “I hear you”.
The image quickly spread on social media, where critics accused the president of “feigning compassion”, says Sky News.
Trump is a moron. His ideas are ridiculous and he needs someone to hand him a note to remind him to have feelings and an awareness that other people exist. We need to vote all of these people out. @RockTheVote https://t.co/OwG55unjCG
— Judd Apatow (@JuddApatow) February 22, 2018
Anyone needing notes to address people at such a sad time lacks compassion and are completely out of touch. Speak from your heart.
— Cathi Young (@ladyvet1) February 22, 2018
During this meeting Trump almost suffocated to death after staffers misplaced the "Breathe in, breathe out" note. pic.twitter.com/lVeZusN9Gt
— Christopher Titus (@TitusNation) February 22, 2018
Although some saw a (limited) bright side:
At least he did not write in his palm like @SarahPalinUSA
— Lynn (@lynn32187) February 22, 2018
However, speaking without notes or autocue, the president “cast a tender tone” in his address to attendees, CNN reports.
“I just grieve for you… to me, there could be nothing worse than what you’ve gone through,” Trump said.
“Thank you for pouring out your hearts because the world is watching and we’re going to come up with a solution.”