Donald Trump blocks Stephen King on Twitter but J.K. Rowling comes to the rescue


Caitlin Gibson

It doesn’t take much to provoke US President Donald Trump into blocking a follower on Twitter – anything from an insult to an unflattering gif to a mild “covfefe” joke seems enough to do the trick.

So it perhaps shouldn’t come as a surprise that bestselling author Stephen King was abruptly added to the #BlockedByTrump list on Tuesday.

The horror fiction maestro has been one of Trump’s most consistent and creative Twitter critics since well before the November election.

“A Trump presidency scares me more than anything else,” he told Ron Charles, editor of The Washington Post’s Book World, during a Facebook Live interview in September. “I’m terrified that he’ll become president.”

Trump, of course, did exactly that – and King continued to offer outspoken condemnation (and sometimes, outright mockery) in response to Trump’s Twitter missives.

That is, until Tuesday, when King announced that he had apparently been blocked from viewing the President’s tweets.

“Trump has blocked me from reading his tweets,” he said. “I may have to kill myself.”

Trump has blocked me from reading his tweets. I may have to kill myself.

— Stephen King (@StephenKing) June 13, 2017

The tipping point appeared to be a couple of pointed barbs aimed at at the President’s cabinet and his daughter, Ivanka Trump.

If Ivanka Trump had grown up in farm country, like some of us, she’d know her father is reaping exactly what he sowed.

— Stephen King (@StephenKing) June 12, 2017

But it didn’t take long for another prominent Trump critic and literary icon to come to the rescue.

Another bestselling author, J.K. Rowling, promised that she would keep King informed of the President’s tweets.

I still have access. I’ll DM them to you.

— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) June 13, 2017

Despite his dramatic initial tweet, King was quick to note that he wasn’t actually despondent.

For many, in fact, being blocked by Trump – a phenomenon that has inspired a trending hashtag – is something of a mark of pride.

Among left-leaning Twitter critics who make a point of responding directly to many of Trump’s tweets, some consider being blocked as a sign of success.

Their words were getting through, and their messages effectively bothered the President, or at least someone monitoring his account.

Others, though, have found the abrupt cut-off more disturbing. Hours before King was barred from viewing Trump’s tweets, the President’s @realDonaldTrump account blocked VoteVets, a progressive advocacy group that claims to represent more than 500,000 veterans, military families and supporters.

The Commander in Chief can block @VoteVets, the voice of 500k military veterans and families, but we will NOT be silenced.

— VoteVets (@votevets) June 13, 2017

The group had decried Trump’s proposed travel ban, which limits travel from six predominantly Muslim countries, as “unconstitutional, immoral” and a national security threat.

Some have questioned whether it is unconstitutional for a commander-in-chief to prevent certain members of the American public from seeing his public communications.

This month, the Knight First Amendment Institute sent a letter to the President arguing that blocking Twitter users because of their opinions was a violation of the First Amendment.

Good grief, it’s actually happened Mr Thin-skin strikes again!

— Mike P Williams  (@Mike_P_Williams) May 31, 2017

As for King, the development caught him so off guard that he first questioned whether it was a hoax.

But even if it wasn’t, he assured Rowling, author of the Harry Potter series, that he’d be OK.

“I’ll always have [US Vice-President Mike] Pence,” he tweeted.

Thanks. Maybe it’s a hoax. I’m good either way. I’ll always have Pence, hahahaha.

— Stephen King (@StephenKing) June 13, 2017

The Washington Post



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