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Melania Trump Still Changing Lives Two Years After Departing White House

AMAC Exclusive – By Shane Harris

When President Donald Trump departed the White House in January of 2021, speculation immediately started about whether or not he would once again seek the presidency in 2024 to continue his mission to “Make America Great Again.” But for former First Lady Melania Trump, the work she began during her time at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue has hardly stopped in the nearly two years since she left Washington. From her “Be Best” initiative to advocacy for foster children, Mrs. Trump continues to exemplify a life of service to others, representing the very best traditions of presidential spouses both during and after their time in office.

Throughout American history, several First Ladies have become icons in their own right by using their platform to advance causes that are important to them. Claudia “Lady Bird” Johnson, for instance, led conservation efforts to protect natural settings like the California Redwoods and the Hudson River. Nancy Reagan launched the famed “Just Say No” anti-drug campaign, touring the country and raising awareness about the dangers of youth drug abuse. Following 9/11, Laura Bush became known as the “Comforter in Chief,” advising parents and reassuring children. While the nature of the office means that presidents are forced almost exclusively to deal with politically charged issues, presidential spouses often have a unique opportunity to rally the country around unifying issues.

For Mrs. Trump, that issue was a campaign entitled “Be Best.” Built on three pillars of well-being, online safety, and opioid abuse prevention, Be Best became an international effort to promote social, emotional, and physical health for children. “From coast to coast, Americans have unwavering resolve to help one another, and share a common bond in wanting to create a better future for our next generation,” Mrs. Trump said in a video announcing the initiative in 2017. “Be Best is a platform that helps children achieve their fullest potential and also highlights the people and organizations that are doing extraordinary things in our country and around the world.”

Mrs. Trump traveled throughout the United States and even abroad to promote her campaign, working with dozens of organizations to develop resources for parents and children. In 2018, her office worked with the Federal Trade Commission to create a booklet for parents about how to talk to their children about online safety. A few months later, Mrs. Trump traveled to Africa, overseeing U.S. aid operations in several countries and providing things like sports equipment to children in need. In 2019, she traveled to Capitol Hill to meet with members of Congress regarding how Be Best could help with implementation of the SUPPORT Act, a bill signed into law by President Trump to stop illegal and unsafe drug imports.

Despite these tireless efforts, Mrs. Trump never received the glowing media coverage afforded to other First Ladies – a pattern that has continued since she left the White House. Vogue Magazine, for example, which featured Michelle Obama on their cover no less than three times to amplify her initiatives, and has featured current First Lady Jill Biden, failed to offer their cover to Mrs. Trump, an actual fashion model, even once. CNN opted to devote hours of coverage to Mrs. Trump’s wardrobe, but failed to mention the work she was doing to help children. Unfortunately, it seems, the mainstream media is only able to view Mrs. Trump’s impressive work through the lens of their blinding hatred for her husband.

However, to her credit, this unfair treatment has hardly deterred Mrs. Trump. Less than a year after leaving the White House, she unveiled the creation of “Fostering the Future,” an extension of her Be Best initiative aimed at securing scholarships for children in the foster care system. Mrs. Trump said on her website that the program will help address alarming statistics concerning foster children – only 50 percent finish high school, only 3 percent obtain a college degree, 20 percent end up homeless, and only half have gainful employment by age 24. The initiative is funded through the sale of non-fungible tokens, or NFTs, as well as corporate sponsorships and individual donations. In September, Mrs. Trump also announced that she would be selling limited edition Christmas ornaments to fund the scholarships.

“We must equip these young Americans with the skills they need to reach their full potential through economic empowerment, and especially through expanded access to resources in the fields of science, technology, and the trades,” she wrote in a joint Fox News op-ed with late Congresswoman Jackie Walorski in observance of National Foster Care Month and in coordination with the launch of Fostering the Future. “Across the country, thousands of children entrusted to the foster care system are searching for direction, answers, and hope—and America must deliver.”

Again, the mainstream media has offered the scholarships scant coverage. What attention has been paid to them has often been shameless and bad taste attempts to damage former President Trump politically. But Mrs. Trump has nonetheless continued to press forward, determined to not let partisan squabbles get in the way of helping children. Every American, regardless of party, should be grateful for her grace and cheerful perseverance.

Shane Harris is a writer and political consultant from Southwest Ohio. You can follow him on Twitter @Shane_Harris_.


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Unhyphenated American
2 months ago

My mother was raised in an orphanage then a foster family. I was raised for many of my young years not with my divorced parents as well as my 5 other siblings somewhere else. Mrs Trump acts out of the goodness of her heart not for money, power or fame. Thank you Mrs Trump.

Marta
2 months ago

She deserves much credit for her work. And also our gratitude. Mrs Trump, as her husband, don’t buckle under pressure and don’t need propaganda to do what is right.

Michael Lewis
2 months ago

I have always thought of her as the Republican Jackie O.

Cass Cowgirl
2 months ago

I honestly feel Melania Trump has been the best FLOTUS of my life time. And that’s pretty long.

Susanne
2 months ago

Mrs. Trump is wonderful and was wonderful in the White House. I wish we can turn back time and keep it . We simply didn’t get enough of the Trumps.

Randall L. Beatty
2 months ago

She is a great First Lady she does not need any of the media who do nothing to benefit this country, they pick and choose who that want to kiss up to there hate for President Trump shows just what kind of people they are this First Lady did nothing wrong to any of them but every chance they get the stab her in the back I do not trust the media once they get it in for you they will screw you over all the can, people like Biden they treat like Gods or the Obama’s the same like a God that is the American way, very sad.

johnh
2 months ago

Thank you & God Bless you for all that you do for the good of others. The Lord knows a good person & does need Twitter & such media to spell out what makes a good person.

Richard
2 months ago

As a citizen that witnessed how in the debate Donald John Trump was Eaton up by Megan Kelly and Bret bear was something to witness. Mrs Trump and any all of their family to include their under age son was treated as if should of never been on television. God bless this family

johnh
2 months ago
Reply to  Richard

Megyn Kelly was the one moderator that asked Trump some real tough questions. He refused to come back for a 2nd round & worked hard at harming her reputation at FOX. She was doing the job that she was assigned to do, & some people do not like it when you ask them tough questions about truth. Donald should have taken the 5th, but then at one time he said the mob uses that & it only means that you are guilty & do not want to answer.

David Millikan
2 months ago

First Lady Melania is the BEST First Lady of ALL TIME.
She set the BEST EXAMPLE for how our girls should grow up by being Ladies, Good Mother’s and Wives, and Successful.
No other before her or after her has
COME CLOSE OR ACCOMPLISHED
MORE.

David L
2 months ago

Melania Trump is a very accomplished person and a wonderful story of success. Donald is fortunate to have found her. She is a class act.

Dee
2 months ago

The liberal mainstream media is the cause of all things bad in this world.

Melinda
2 months ago

It’s too bad the media either criticizes Melania or ignores her, instead of acknowledging her accomplishments. Her good works should not be political.

anna hubert
2 months ago
Reply to  Melinda

She us a lady and a doer is not attracting attention to herself media likes blathering losers

Anne
2 months ago

Mrs. Trump has always been a class act! Blessing to her and her organizations good works.

johnh
2 months ago
Reply to  Anne

Kudos to Mrs. Trump & also to Mrs. Michelle Obama for all of the good things that she does for this country & youth. Both of them are silent heroes……..

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