So, as you probably know, President Donald Trump visited England on Friday. He met with Prime Minister Theresa May and Queen Elizabeth II, the latter of which was a media firestorm of epic proportions.
All because he arrived on time.
“Queen Elizabeth stood onstage in the summer heat for 15 minutes Friday before she was joined by President Donald Trump, who was already fresh from a press conference where he publicly knocked Prime Minister Theresa May as she stood beside him,” Vice reported.
“The 92-year-old Elizabeth II, in coat, hat and gloves, stood under a white awning on the Windsor Castle grounds, waiting for Trump’s motorcade. He and first lady Melania Trump eventually stood beside the queen as some uniformed Brits played ‘The Star Spangled Banner’ before joining her inside for tea.”
As you can see, a picture of the shocking events unfolding in London.
She even checked her watch, which is apparently as angry as the British allow themselves to get (unless they’re Gordon Ramsay, of course).
— NAFTA Posterchild (@RobsinBuda) July 13, 2018
Now, here’s how the BBC reported things.
Wait, so they were exactly on time? Yes, but that wasn’t good enough for the media.
Earlier this week, the New York Daily News posted a guide to royal etiquette, which we always get reminded of whenever the president visits the U.K. and which always reminds me why our fine slice of the earth decided to file for divorce in the 18th century.
“First, the President shouldn’t consider arriving for his appointment with the Queen at the agreed upon time as ‘being on time.’ When meeting with royalty, guests are expected to be early, according to British etiquette experts Debrett’s.”
As for the American media, the fact that they don’t roll their eyes at this sort of nonsense is beyond me. They’re generally willing to give the president a pass when it suits them, at least when it comes to the intricacies of royal protocol. It didn’t suit them in this case. I wonder why.
Expecting respect is perfectly reasonable. Expecting world leaders with busy schedules to not arrive on time but instead beforehand seems a bit ridiculous to this reporter, no matter who that leader is.
Breeches of etiquette are hardly germane to this president, either. Barack Obama and George W. Bush made gaffes that the British press also devoted reams of paper to as well — proof that this isn’t just something unique to Trump.
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