The Republican National Convention was nothing short of mayhem yesterday. Protesters stormed the streets of Cleveland to contest Trump’s presumptive nomination, testing the police forces and security measures put in place to keep the city safe throughout the event. Anti-Trump delegates caused an uproar within the convention itself, as they called for a rules change that led to chaos on the floor as delegates shouted over one another until order was finally restored. Fiery speeches played upon Americans’ greatest fears, as those such as Rudy Giuliani, General Michael Flynn, and Joni Ernst all tried to illustrate the fact that the United States is in grave danger, on the brink of economic and military collapse, unless Trump is elected into the White House. And, when Trump, himself, came out onto the stage, his entrance was more reminiscent of a WWE appearance, with “We are the Champions” playing amidst smoke machines and bright lights, than a presidential speech.
While all of this was very clear to anyone who was watching, a slightly more subtle incident that took place last night – something many of those watching likely missed – is perhaps the most ridiculous part of the convention thus far: Melania’s speech was plagiarized. And not only was it plagiarized; it took full paragraphs from Michelle Obama’s 2008 DNC speech.
Journalist Jarrett Hill tweeted that “Melania stole a whole graph from Michelle's speech.” With the parts in question in bold, Melania said that “From a young age, my parents impressed on me the values that you work hard for what you want in life: that your word is your bond and you do what you say and keep your promise; that you treat people with respect. They taught and showed me values and morals in their daily life. That is a lesson that I continue to pass along to our son, and we need to pass those lessons on to the many generations to follow. Because we want our children in this nation to know that the only limit to your achievements is the strength of your dreams and your willingness to work for them.”
Michelle’s speech: “Barack and I were raised with so many of the same values: that you work hard for what you want in life; that your word is your bond and you do what you say you’re going to do; that you treat people with dignity and respect, even if you don’t know them, and even if you don’t agree with them. And Barack and I set out to build lives guided by these values, and pass them on to the next generation. Because we want our children — and all children in this nation — to know that the only limit to the height of your achievements is the reach of your dreams and your willingness to work for them.”
It is fairly obvious that the similarities are beyond mere coincidence and that Trump pulled full pieces of Obama’s speech for her own. She will not be able to pin this on a speechwriting intern, as she told Matt Lauer that she wrote the speech herself with only minimal outside help.
The Trump campaign issued a statement to address the plagiarized speech, but it hardly does so at all. “In writing her beautiful speech, Melania’s team of writers took notes on her life’s inspirations, and in some instances included fragments that reflected her own thinking. Melania’s immigrant experience and love for America shone through in her speech, which made it such a success.”
What do you think about Melania plagiarizing part of Michelle Obama’s 2008 speech?