NPR

Opinion: Why 'Fact Checking' and 'Reality Check' Do Not Apply to Trump

The moment when the president articulated his attitude with pithy perfection came when he told the Veterans of Foreign Wars that "what you're seeing and what you're reading is not what's happening."
President Trump speaks at the 119th Veterans of Foreign Wars National Convention Tuesday in Kansas City, Mo. Source: Brendan Smialowski

President Trump does not make "mistakes" in the sense that the rest of us do.

We make mistakes, get corrected, make amends, apologize and move on. The president does not.

The president may not even tell "lies" in the sense that the rest of us might.

If we lie and are exposed, we face consequences that affect us personally. It is different for this president.

Why is it different? Because the very idea of error or deception requires a shared sense of what is actually correct or truthful. The key word here is , and that is what seems to be lacking.

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from NPR

NPR2 min readPolitics
Streets Of San Juan A 'War Zone' As Protesters Call For Governor To Resign
Some of Puerto Rico's biggest stars attended, and tensions ratcheted up later when protesters burst through a barricade at the governor's mansion and security forces fired tear gas at the crowd.
NPR6 min read
Your Local Library May Have A New Offering In Stock: A Resident Social Worker
Libraries have never been just about books; they're also crucial hubs of community support. Some are even expanding that role, and supporting their librarians, by bringing in trained social workers.
NPR4 min read
In Lost Essay, Langston Hughes Recounts Meeting A Young Chain Gang Runaway
The work, previously published only in Russian, was discovered by Professor Steven Hoelscher. The encounter occurred in 1927, when Hughes and Zora Neale Hurston went on a road trip through the South.