Election 2020

Scary Trump Ad Tries to Stoke Fear of Protesters With 2014 Photo … From Ukraine

A new advertisement from Trump’s 2020 election campaign has popped up on Facebook, showing a crowd of protesters pummeling a cop and portraying what it calls “chaos & violence” in the U.S.

Welp, that’s all well and good except for one problem: the photo actually depicts pro-Democracy protests in Ukraine.

Which is a little peculiar considering this is a campaign ad for a president who is always screeching about “fake news” don’t you think?

Business Insider reports that the ad, published Tuesday, shows two images: One of Trump listening to police leaders, and the photo mentioned above, showing protesters attacking a police officer who’s on the ground.

“Public safety vs. chaos & violence,” the text underneath the photo reads.

This ad is harrowing because it comes at a time when Trump has sent federal law enforcement officers to Portland, Oregon to quell protests. In some instances, federal law enforcement has used unmarked vehicles to drag protesters right off the streets. And Trump is threatening to send more officers to other cities led by Democrats.

And let me tell you, the protests are a real thing with the Trump campaign, which is worrisome because this may be a harbinger of things to come if this man gets elected again. It’s also worrisome but not surprising that they used a photo that isn’t even from the U.S. or even from this year. These people lie when it suits them, and it suits them to do this every day.

The photo was actually uploaded from Wikimedia Commons, Wikipedia’s public domain archive in 2014 and it’s labeled “a police officer attacked by protesters during clashes in Ukraine, Kyiv. Events of February 18, 2014.”

The photographer, Mystyslav Chernov has since confirmed to Business Insider that this is indeed is his photo and that yes, it was taken in Ukraine in 2014. And he doesn’t seem surprised by this.

“Photography has always been used to manipulate public opinion,” he said. “And with the rise of social media and the rise of populism, this is happening even more.”

“The only way to combat this is through education and media literacy,” he added. “When people learn to independently distinguish truth from lies, then the number of manipulations will decrease.”

Protests against police brutality stemming from the police custody death of George Floyd are continuing to roil the country and Trump has resorted to using inflammatory language to add further gasoline to an already combustible situation.

Because that’s how this man rolls. Why offer words of comfort when you can exacerbate a situation that’s already set on boil and at the same time get more attention for yourself?

And in Portland, these protests have been ongoing for two months. Federal officers have been sent in against the wishes of the local government, using tear gas and so-called “non-lethal weapons” on protesters. In a statement last Thursday, acting Secretary of Homeland Security Chad Wolf has called the protesters “violent anarchists,” thus tossing additional gasoline on the fire.

Jesse Lehrich, a former spokesman for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign, couldn’t resist deriding the ad in a tweet Tuesday.

I can hardly wait until Trump and his minions are out of office, can you?

meet the author

Megan has lived in California, Nevada, Arizona, Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Florida and she currently lives in Central America. Living in these places has informed her writing on politics, science, and history. She is currently owned by 15 cats and 3 dogs and regularly owns Trump supporters when she has the opportunity.

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