El americano no deseado: an Analysis of the Negative Opinion of Donald Trump among the Spanish Media (Post Three)

Due to the nature of my research, many, if not all, of the quotes are in Spanish.

In my previous posts I stated my findings for the top three most popular themes in regard to the media’s reaction to the Trump presidency. Among all of the articles mentioning Donald Trump, the top three most prominent issues were his environmental stance, his unique character, and his foreign relations policy. In most of the articles pertaining to these issues, a clear point of comparison to Barack Obama developed. For this reason, I argue that the major differences in the three topics listed above between Donald Trump and his predecessor is the main reason for the overwhelmingly negative opinion of Trump among the Spanish media.  In this post, I plan to discuss some of the many articles that led me to these findings.

Environmental Issues 

After the announcement that Donald Trump would not be joining the Paris Climate Agreement, the newspapers in Spain were filled with information about Trump and his actions, or fault of actions, in the area of climate change. The majority of these articles included comparisons, of some form, to Barack Obama. The article titled “Las empresas de EE. UU. rechazan de plana la decision” of the popular media  source, El Pais, compared the position of the United States on climate change from when Barack Obama was president and the modern day position of Donald Trump. Sandro Pozzi, the author of this piece, wrote “El mercado de la energy es global y el repliegue puede crear una desventaja competitiva a EE UU. China invirtió el pasado ejercicio 103.000 millones de dolores…en energies limpias frente a 44.100 millones de EE.UU. cuando Barack Obama era un presidente ” (Pozzi). So, for the most part, the majority of the references to Obama are not very lengthy nor very important to the main principal of the article. The references are subtle, one to two sentence comparisons to the previous president that tend to add a bit of bias and serve to remind the reader of the political environment of the United States before Donald Trump.

International Relations

Historically, the United States presidential administration and the government of Russian president, Vladimir Putin, have not been friendly towards each other. However, Trump is attempting to change this policy of Barack Obama as well. Due to this drastic change in the United States relationship to Russia, Spanish articles have been flooded with Donald Trump and his position on this issue. “Washington huele la sangre” by Lluis Bassets cites an example of this trend: “Dos de sus empresas cobraron de Moscu y de Ankara para defender sus intereses en Washington, pero luego oculto esta relation, como hizo tambien con la reunion con el embajador ruso durante la transition presidencial, en la que se discutio sobre el levantamiento de las sanciones impuestas por Obama contra Rusia por la interferencia en la campana” (Bassets). Why did Trump hide his relations with Russia? The author of this article does not give an answer. Why did Obama give sanctions to Russia? For their interference en the campaign. The author does give an answer to that question. The author had purpose in his presentation of both sides. If the reader had any doubts about the bias in this article, the author ends his piece very clearly: “Washington ha olido la sangre, como sucede cuando la juarira muerde a una presa, y ahora nada frenara una caceria que tiene en el punto de mira a este presidente inepto, volátil e imprudente” (Bassets). Despite this article’s partiality, it was not an op-ed piece.

Character

It is irrefutable that the rhetoric and personalities of Donald Trump and Barack Obama vary greatly. Because of this, the Spanish media have been quick to create an image of Donald Trump as a clown, in contrast to the thoughtful character of Barack Obama that Spaniards looked up to greatly. John Carlin, a journalist for El Pais, compares Donald Trump to all of the misbehaved children in the book, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Carlin writes of Trump that he is a “nino imaduro” y -“avaricious…grosero…mentiroso…y tramposo burton” (Carlin). After this discussion of the faults in character of Donald Trump, Carlin describes Barack Obama as “un hombre intelligent y edemas uno persona adults” (Carlin). In the magazine called Tapas, there is a visual depiction of Donald Trump that furthers the characterization of Donald trump as a clown.

Image result for tapas donald trump cover

Avenue for Future Research

It would be interesting to see if the reaction of the Spanish media to Donald Trump would be as strong if his predecessor was more similar to him. I predict that it would not be. Perhaps, I could further test this theory by looking at other countries, specifically North Korea, Cuba or Russia, with histories of very similar leaders with views in opposition to traditional Spanish beliefs. If my hypothesis holds true, these leaders would not have as much attention from the Spanish media as does Donald J. Trump.

 

Citations

Bassets, Lluis. “Washington huele la sangre.” El País 28 mayo 2017: 8. Impreso.

Carlin, John. “Donald y la fábrica de chocolate.” El País 29 mayo 2017: 6-7. Impreso.

“Donald Trump…¿Es idiota o solo parece?” Tapas 23 mayo 2017: n. pág. Impreso.

Sandro Pozzi. “Las discutibles razones económicas para salir del pacto.” El País 3 junio 2017: 4. Impreso.

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