The White House is now claiming that Donald Trump was the first president to ever display a red ribbon, which is not true.
At a press conference yesterday, White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany was asked by the Washington Blade about why Donald Trump – once again – failed to mention LGBTQ people and the disproportionate impact HIV has had on them in his World AIDS Day proclamation earlier this week.
McEnany completely ignored the question and instead lied: “The president honored World AIDS Day yesterday in a way that no president has before with the red ribbon there, and I think he commemorated the day as he should.” She quickly called on another journalist to prevent any follow-ups.
Kayleigh McEnany falsely says Trump first to hang red ribbon from the White House
Posted by Washington Blade on Wednesday, December 2, 2020
Of course, Trump isn’t the first president to ever display the red ribbon for World AIDS Day; according to Politico, that honor falls to former President George W. Bush who first hung a large red ribbon in front of the White House in 2007. Former President Barack Obama continued to do so on World AIDS Day.
More to the point, the question wasn’t about the entirely symbolic act of displaying a red ribbon, but whether Trump has an understanding of how homophobia, biphobia, and transphobia are linked to the spread of HIV. That McEnany refused to answer that question is not a good sign.