Olympic skier Lindsey Vonn was injured in competition — cause for crass celebration among Donald Trump's biggest fans because she publicly distanced herself from his administration.
Donald Trump fans are reflecting their idol’s callous approach to human suffering by cheering an injury to champion skier Lindsey Vonn.
Her offense? Not supporting and worshipping Trump with the same intensity they have.
Vonn won the gold and bronze medals at the 2010 Winter Olympics, and won gold at the 2009 world championships for downhill skiing. She is in contention to compete at the winter games in 2018.
In a recent interview, Vonn made a distinction between representing the United States and representing Donald Trump.
“I want to represent our country well. I don’t think that there are a lot of people currently in our government that do that,” Vonn told CNN. She also said she would not visit the White House if she were invited after a successful Olympic experience.
Those comments quickly came under attack from the pro-Trump Fox News, where host Ainsley Earhardt declared that Vonn’s position and comments were “very un-American.”
After a race in Switzerland, Vonn apparently injured her back. The U.S. Ski and Snowboard Team said she “compressed her back on the fifth gate, skied through pain but didn’t have power to push. She was evaluated by the physio and doctor in the tent.”
Normal Americans observing the injury to Vonn, who is widely considered one of the all-time greats in her sport, would hope for the best and that she could go on to strongly represent the country in international competition.
Not Trump fans, who saw the injury as another opportunity to defend their hero and attack detractors.
On the conservative blog Gateway Pundit, operated by Jim Hoft (who has been described as “The Dumbest Man on the Internet”), the Vonn injury was hailed as evidence of the “Trump Curse.” The story was headlined, “Trump Curse Hits Leftie Skier Hard.”
Hoft crassly wrote that Vonn “dropped to the ground at the finish line like a sack of flour.”
And this is a site that has received official credentials to cover the Trump White House. Gateway Pundit’s White House correspondent, Lucian Wintrich, recently gave a speech entitled “It’s OK To Be White,” echoing the message promoted by white supremacist groups.
The sentiments reflect the outlook held by many in the shrinking core of Trump supporters — that detractors must be punished, even with physical pain, for not fully embracing Trump.
Vonn made clear that when she skis, she skis for her country, not to endorse the extremist agenda and world view of Donald Trump. She made an expression of patriotism, but because she excluded Trump, his most diehard followers are relishing her physical injuries. That is the depths to which they have plunged.