Things got especially heated today at President Trump's impeachment hearing. During her testimony, Pamela Karlan, a professor at Stanford Law School, mentioned the president's son, Barron, which incited fury from Republicans and even the first lady herself, Melania Trump. Critics on the other side of the aisle called out the double standard, noting that the president had things to say about Greta Thunberg, who is also a child. Things got heated on Twitter, where things generally fall into a messy firestorm of arguments, and punches were being thrown from supporters from both parties.
"Kings could do no wrong because the King’s word was law, but contrary to what President Trump says, Article II does not give him the power to do anything he wants," Karlan said during her time on the stand. "The Constitution says there can be no titles of nobility, so while the president can name his son Barron, he can't make him a baron."
Melania responded on via Twitter, calling the statement "pandering" and requesting that Barron be granted the privacy that other children receive.
"A minor child deserves privacy and should be kept out of politics. Pamela Karlan, you should be ashamed of your very angry and obviously biased public pandering, and using a child to do it," she wrote.
A minor child deserves privacy and should be kept out of politics. Pamela Karlan, you should be ashamed of your very angry and obviously biased public pandering, and using a child to do it.— Melania Trump (@FLOTUS) December 4, 2019
The Trump campaign was quick to issue a statement on the matter. It made its rounds online, where it, not surprisingly, drummed up support from the right and drew ire from the left.
"Only in the minds of crazed liberals is it funny to drag a 13-year-old child into the impeachment nonsense,” Trump campaign national press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said in a statement, The Hill reports.
"Pamela Karlan thought she was being clever and going for laughs, but she instead reinforced for all Americans that Democrats have no boundaries when it comes to their hatred of everything related to President Trump," McEnany continued.
White House Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham called the remarks "classless."
On Twitter, one of the Republicans' main arguments was the Democrats' request to have Hunter Biden, who is an adult, removed from the public narrative. The left insisted that what Karlan's statement wasn't actually a dig at anyone, it was just pointing out a pun in Barron's name.
Oh give me a break, people. Karlan wasn't attacking Barron Trump, or making a joke at his expense, or dragging him into politics. The mere mention of his name as a play on words to make a legitimate point is none of those things. You don't have to fall for every bad faith attack.— Matthew Miller (@matthewamiller) December 4, 2019
All this feigned outrage because Professor Karlan said, "The Constitution doesn’t allow titles of nobility. The president can name his son Barron, but he can’t make him a baron."— Brian Tyler Cohen (@briantylercohen) December 4, 2019
But sure, keep clutching those pearls.
Barron was not attacked. Trump's monarchist tendencies were.— Kate Brannen (@K8brannen) December 4, 2019
Karlan did not attack Barron. She was asked to draw a parallel between the behavior of a king and that of Trump and she used that context to show that Trump has always had projected a grandiose version of himself to paint himself as nobility, right down to how he named his child.— Amee Vanderpool (@girlsreallyrule) December 4, 2019
Can you point out the explicit attack? All she did was draw the parallel between Trump’s demeanor and that of a king. Absolutely 0 attack on Barron Trump.— Michael Reinhardt (@reinie_67) December 4, 2019
...she said nothing about him. Only noted that the President named his son Barron. Come on.— Jeff Nelson (@1jeffnelson) December 4, 2019
Other users pointed to the fact that the current administration hasn't exactly been great about children's welfare.
Let’s be real about this: Republicans show more outrage over Barron being used as a “punchline” than they are over the fact that toddlers in cages are being used as examples of what will happen if you’re a brown person trying to get into America.— Ida Skibenes ❄️ (@ida_skibenes) December 4, 2019
Or that he has children in cages on the border— patricia owen (@TrishO49) December 4, 2019
Or having children put in cages where they are tortured and separated from their families, Barron’s name was simply use metaphorically as an example ,had nothing to do with him personally.They are so desperate for dissension.— crystle kida (@amadahyloves) December 4, 2019
I wonder how the separated families would feel? Hmmm not picking on children.— Shar G (@hapkidogal) December 4, 2019
President Trump himself has yet to comment on Karlan's testimony.