President Trump shared a doctored CNN video of a "racist baby" and accused "fake news" of providing misleading information

By Georgia Slater
June 19, 2020 01:04 PM
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President Donald Trump
| Credit: Olivier Douliery/Pool/Getty

Twitter has added a warning to a video of a "racist baby" tweeted by President Donald Trump this week, tagging his post as containing "manipulated media" produced to mislead users.

On Thursday, Trump, 74, shared an edited clip of an originally heartwarming video that went viral in 2019.

In the version that Trump shared, a Black child is seen running away from a white child, with a fake CNN chyron that reads, "terrified todler[sic] runs from racist baby."

"Racist baby probably a Trump voter," the screen then flashes.

As the video continues, it cuts to a screen that says "what actually happened," showing the two children running to hug one another.

"America is not the problem, fake news is. If you see something, say something. Only you can prevent fake news dumpster fires," the screen shows at the end.

The altered version came from user CarpeDonktum, who has gained momentum on social media for creating pro-Trump memes.

After Trump's tweet went viral, Twitter added the "manipulated media" label, which when clicked, leads to a page that confirms the clip is "edited and features a fake CNN chyron."

"The original CNN story, which is from 2019, reported on a friendship between two toddlers," the page reads.

Michael Cisneros, who originally shared the video as the father of one of the toddlers in the clip, responded on Facebook to Trump's tweet and asked people to spread word about the false message.

"PLEASE!!! SHARE THIS!!!! EVERYONE!!!! HE WILL NOT TURN THIS LOVING, BEAUTIFUL VIDEO TO FURTHER HIS HATE AGENDA‼️‼️‼️‼️" Cisneros wrote.

CNN also put out a statement to Trump, sharing a link to its original and accurate coverage of the video from last year.

"CNN did cover this story - exactly how it happened. Just as we reported your positions on race (and poll numbers). We’ll continue working with facts rather than tweeting fake videos that exploit innocent children. We invite you to do the same. Be better," the outlet wrote.

This marks the third time in less than a month that the president's tweets have been flagged by Twitter.

The first label came at the end of May when the platform added buttons to two of the president's tweets allowing users to seek further information about mail-in voting, which he wrongly claimed would be "substantially" fraudulent.

"Get the facts about mail-in ballots," reads the message on his posts — which, when clicked, takes users to a page that includes further information on the subject that debunk the president's statements.

Days later, a post from Trump was flagged by Twitter as violating its policy on the "glorification of violence."

President Donald Trump
| Credit: NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP via Getty Images

"....These THUGS are dishonoring the memory of George Floyd, and I won’t let that happen," Trump tweeted. "Just spoke to Governor Tim Walz and told him that the Military is with him all the way. Any difficulty and we will assume control but, when the looting starts, the shooting starts. Thank you!

According to The Washington Post, the late Walter Headley, a controversial former Miami police chief, was quoted as saying the "when the looting starts, the shooting starts" line in 1967, which the president has since re-utilized.

Rather than removing the president's tweet altogether, Twitter explained that "it may be in the public's interest" for his statement to "remain accessible" but hidden from public view unless someone opts to see it.

The site noted that the tweet violates its policies on "the glorification of violence based on the historical context of the last line, its connection to violence, and the risk it could inspire similar actions today."