Metaphor Amnesia? Morning Joe Calls Trump an 'Animal,' Ready to 'Lash Out'

April 17th, 2024 10:23 PM

Mara Gay MSNBC Morning Joe 4-17-24 When Donald Trump referred to the illegal immigrant accused of killing 22-year-old Laken Riley on the University of Georgia campus as an "animal," the liberal media went aflame with outrage.

Thus on MSNBC, Joy Reid condemned Trump's "dehumanizing and degrading" language [see clip at 2:00.]

So, surely, no one on MSNBC would ever use the a-for-animal word in describing Donald Trump!

Oh, wait. On today's Morning Joe, Mara Gay, an MSNBC analyst and member of the editorial board of the New York Times, said of Trump:

"He's like a caged animal. And that's a dangerous situation. He's feeling very threatened. He's out of control. And so we do expect him to lash out."

Oh no! Not just an animal, but an out-of-control animal! Creating a "dangerous situation" in which "we expect him to lash out."

Yet for some reason, no one on the panel castigated Gay for her use of such "degrading and dehumanizing" language. Huh!

Remind me to tune into Joy Reid's show later. Surely she will apply the same standard to Trump critics as she did to Trump himself! Or not.


  • Gay's calling Trump an "animal" was preceded by a discussion of Trump's reported lack of discipline. Jonathan Lemire noted one exception to that rule -- that in the days prior to the 2016 election, Trump was persuaded to stay off Twitter and stay on message, which helped him win the election. But Lemire managed to work in a dig, saying that in addition to Trump's discipline, what contributed to his victory was "an assist from FBI Director Comey." That was a reference to the letter Comey sent days before the allegation saying that some of Hillary's emails had come to light that were pertinent to the FBI's investigation. Some in the liberal media blame Hillary's loss on that letter. 
  • Scarborough admitted that, like Trump, he too finds it difficult to sit for hours on end, and that therefore "Mika lets me talk all the time to stay awake!" That might have been a peace offering from Joe toward Mika, who is reportedly fed up with his constant big-footing of her on the show. 
  • Amateur psychiatrist Mika diagnosed Trump with an "ADD mentality."

Here's the transcript.

Morning Joe
6:18 am EDT

JOE SCARBOROUGH: Jonathan Lemire, obviously you've been covering Donald Trump a very long time. You understand that his lack of discipline is legendary. His [in]ability to sit still, legendary. He wrote, even in "The Art of the Deal" that, basically, that he didn't have the discipline to sit down and make plans for a day. He just kind of showed up in the office, answered phones, moved around, did things.

Drudge puts it this way, "Don in Hell," [Mika laughs] with a picture of Donald Trump inside the courtroom. And for anybody that knows him, reported on him, that's been around him. The fact that this guy has to sit in a courtroom, six, seven, eight hours a day.

MIKA BRZEZINSKI: Oh, that's not good for him.

SCARBOROUGH: Required to. It's just, it's something he has never done his entire life.

JONATHAN LEMIRE: He has a legendary short attention span, ricocheting from one thought to the next, would always frustrate his business advisers, and certainly his White House staff. He's been, best I can tell, disciplined, only a handful of times in his life. Once, famously, in the last week or so of the 2016 election. The one time he was convinced to stay off Twitter, and he, mostly, stayed on message at rallies, and we know that helped him win there in those last few days—with an assist from FBI Director Comey. But that is certainly the exception rather than the rule. 

SCARBOROUGH: And I will just say, yeah, anybody sitting six, seven, eight hours. You know me: if I were sitting somewhere for eight hours, I would, I would be falling asleep. I would be --

MIKA: You can't even get through four! [A reference to the daily length of Morning Joe.]

SCARBOROUGH: I would be writing songs! Yeah, it's hard to even get through four, and Mika lets me talk all the time to stay awake! So I can't imagine: what a, what a physical toll for anybody.

MIKA: This is where also it helps to have real firsthand knowledge of Donald Trump over the course of over a decade. And the guy has no attention span. We've seen it up front, and how we've known people who've worked for him, and they have to work around this sort of ADD mentality that he has, and the need for attention. Constant attention. Making moments.

. . . 

MARA GAY: And you saw yesterday that the judge recognized that concern in admonishing him and saying, I'm not going to have, you know, mumblings in my courtroom that could intimidate potential jurors. So, obviously that is a concern shared by many. I do agree with George [Conway.] I think that his pr capabilities are going to be somewhat limited in New York City, or maybe it was Jon that mentioned that a moment ago. That's absolutely true. 

It's an ongoing concern. Because essentially, he's like a caged animal. And that's a dangerous situation. He's feeling very threatened. He's out of control. And so we do expect him to lash out. Anybody who has covered him over the past decade can expect that.