In light of recent events, it appears that Jay-Z’s number of problems may have finally hit 100, given a brutal online swing from master of diplomacy, Donald Trump.
The incident began due to remarks Jay-Z made about the president while doing an interview for The Van Jones Show.
When discussing Trump, Jones pondered whether the decreasing rate of black unemployment was enough to excuse the president for his ’outlandish’ behavior.
Jay-Z was quick to deny Trump a free pass.
“Treat me really bad and pay me well. It’s not going to lead to happiness,” Jay-Z said. “It’s going to lead to the same thing. Everyone is going to be sick”.
The statement built off of an earlier argument Jones made in his opening monologue.
“Many people have predicted a stock market meltdown if you want, but the reverse actually happened,” Jones said when stating the virtues of Trump’s successes. ”Trump actually continued Obama’s bull market, and accelerated it, which means my 401k looks pretty amazing right now, and so does yours, and that’s the truth”.
Although the comments appeared to be fairly complementary at first, Jones began to discuss the dangers of the president’s less than formal rhetoric.
“We now have a commander-in-chief who picks fights with truth seeking journalists, with his own F.B.I. agents, with football players, but he somehow bumbled the chance to stand up forcefully to Nazi terrorist, and to Russians who are messing up our elections… He creates so many controversies every day, nobody can even keep up anymore. And the madness has divided the country so much, that half of us can barely speak to the other half, half the time,” Jones said.
Upon hearing these comments, the president’s internal defense mechanisms activated, replying on Twitter: “Somebody please inform Jay-Z that because of my policies, Black Unemployment has just been reported to be at the LOWEST RATE EVER RECORDED”.
Now, regardless of political affiliation or personal bias, facts still remain to be an undeniable truth.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, black unemployment is at an all-time low of 7.7 percent, even if it has been steadily declining since 2011.
The president is clearly in support of this trend, and the domestic economy has fared well in recent years, but Donald Trump’s tweet only acknowledges half of the issue.
While the president’s statement confirms his economic success, it also did nothing to address his criticisms.
Jones had already outwardly admitted the declining rate of black unemployment was a good thing for the country.
He used the president’s success to create a holistic argument, believing that a flourishing economy doesn’t necessarily excuse a broken political and social discourse.
By refusing to recognize the criticisms made by Jay-Z and Jones, Trump shows that not only does he disagree, but that he isn’t even really listening.
The problems raised on The Van Jones Show dealt with the president’s rash approach to communication with Democrats, including his dismissal of the climate crisis, and derogatory statements made towards Haitian immigrants, not his domestic economic policy.
Left leaning Americans are fearful that their concerns are being ignored, and Trump’s total dismissal of Jay-Z’s criticisms only support these discomforts.
While Trump dueling off with celebrities on the political stage may be groan inducing, his response does give important insight on his character.
Given the rise of the “fake news” movement, it’s clear that the president is incredibly adverse to direct criticism, creating a binary form of civil discourse.
Donald Trump’s self-efficacy inhibits his objectivity, leaving no room for fault or nuance.
If there is no room for fault, then there is no room for debate, creating a harsh and adverse political climate on both sides.
But in the words of Van Jones.
“Our economy is coming up, but our society is coming apart. That’s the truth,” Jones said.
By JOHN FICHER
Featured photo: Touch Weekly image.