People online are accusing president Donald Trump of copying Obama’s tribute to Kobe Bryant. Users on social media were quick to point out similarities between what Trump posted and what had earlier been posted by Obama.
In a tweet sent on Sunday just before midnight, Trump wrote: “Kobe Bryant, despite being one of the truly great basketball players of all time, was just getting started in life.”
The tweet also went on to note that “He loved his family so much and had such a strong passion for the future.” Trump then sent his message of condolences in a second tweet saying that “Melania and I send our warmest condolences to Vanessa and the wonderful Bryant family.”
But Twitter users were not buying it. Many were quick to note that the tweet looked very similar to what the former president had posted earlier. Obama’s tweet went out at around 9.56 PM, roughly two hours before Trump’s tribute. The former US president noted, “Kobe was a legend on court and was just getting started in what would have been just as meaningful a second act.”
Obama went on to add that, “To lose Gianna is even more heartbreaking to us parents.” The former President ended his tribute by saying, “Michelle and I send love and prayers to Vanessa and the entire Bryant family on this unthinkable day.”
A simple look at both these tweets shows a lot of similarities and this didn’t escape the attention of Twitter users. The frenzy was started off by VOX journalist Aaron Rupar who noted the similarities in a tweet sent Sunday.
Other journalists also pointed out these glaring similarities. Even though the Trump tweet isn’t a carbon copy of what Obama said, the structure of the wording and even the choice of words look very similar. The Trump tribute was shared on both Instagram and Twitter.
The president’s tweet came three hours after his first tribute was slammed for being too opportunistic. The tweet read, “Reports are that basketball great Kobe Bryant and three others have been killed in a helicopter crash in California. That is terrible news!” The tweet was not received well by users on Twitter. In fact, the top reply was “Kobe hated you.” Some users even dug up links to tweets Kobe had sent criticizing the president and his administration.
Trump has had a torrid relationship with major African American athletes including Colin Kaepernick and LeBron James. He has openly criticized these athletes for standing up for social justice and was even recently involved in a Twitter spat with LeBron. It wasn’t a surprise that many people felt his tribute to Kobe was not genuine.
Kobe Bryant, who is regarded as one of the greatest NBA players of all time, was killed in a helicopter crash in California. 8 other people also died in the crash including his daughter Gianna.
The former Lakers player continues to receive heartwarming tributes from all over the world including from politicians and other athletes as well. He was 41 at the time of his death.