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Donald Trump lambasted: Church officials criticize POTUS for photo op in Catholic shrine amidst protests
The protests sparked by the death of George Floyd at the hands of the police continue on, with some protests turning into full-scale riots because of police and anarchists. As President Donald Trump with First Lady Melania Trump, recently took a photo in front of a church, church officials including the archbishop have condemned Trump’s actions.
Washington Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory criticized the photo op by the Trumps outside the damaged place of worship, the Saint John Paul II National Shrine. In a statement that was released, Archbishop Gregory expressed his disappointment that the President would make use of a place of worship in such a manner that would violate their principles. Other church officials echoed Archbishop Gregory’s sentiments as well, opposing Trump’s visit to the place of worship.
Episcopal Diocese of Washington Bishop Mariann Budde, expressed outrage as the Secret Service used tear gas on the demonstrators to make them clear the way for the Trumps to pass through and take photos in front of the shrine. In a photo, Trump was holding a bible, albeit upside down. “The president just used a bible, the most sacred text of the Judeo-Christian tradition, and one of the churches of my diocese, without permission, as a backdrop for a message antithetical to the teachings of Jesus and everything that our churches stand for.”
Bishop Gregory pointed out that Saint John Paul II actively defended human rights and human dignity and that he would not condone violent means to silence and intimidate others for a photo op in front of a place of worship.
It was not just church officials that have been criticizing Trump even more as of late. Fox News host Tucker Carlson also slammed the President as well as his son-in-law and adviser Jared Kushner for his response towards the protests that have been occurring since the weekend. As the riots and the protests escalated between the police, the Secret Service, and the protesters, the White House was seen on partial lockdown, with Trump having retreated into a bunker along with the First Lady and their son Barron Trump. This resulted in more backlash towards Trump.
Carlson questioned Trump’s ability to be able to protect the American people, especially as even media correspondents were also seen to be caught in the crossfires of the altercations. Carlson added that Trump only seemed to care about himself instead of thinking of protecting the nation.