‘Today’s report erroneously assigned a political context to a message meant only to remind students about … behaviors unbecoming of a University of Alabama student…’
(Ben Sellers, Liberty Headlines) President Donald Trump has enjoyed a hero’s welcome on past visits to Alabama, but a fake news story on Wednesday suggested his reception at a major college football rivalry this weekend might make Crimson Tide fans look uglier than usual.
Naturally, there will be a lot of noise when the nation’s two best college teams—No. 2 Louisiana State University and the top-ranked University of Alabama meet in Tuscaloosa on Saturday.
Trump’s announcement Monday that he would be in attendance added yet another layer of hype to this super-charged SEC matchup.
On Wednesday, AL.com, a site affiliated with Alabama Media Group, posted a warning for rowdy students that no presidential heckling would be tolerated at Saturday’s game.
The site said that the University of Alabama’s Student Government Association had sent a letter signed by Jason Rothfarb, vice president of Student Affairs, advising students that any jeers could cost them their preferred seating for the remainder of the season.
From the University of Alabama SGA, ahead of President Trump’s visit to the game. Strange that in all the games in which drunken bacchanalia has been tolerated, if not celebrated and encouraged I’ve never once been warned to not be “disruptive” pic.twitter.com/1j87QlxSDr
— Carter-William (@carterwilliam_) November 6, 2019
Some in the liberal media’s echo chamber gleefully delighted in the school’s ultimatum, which came on the same day that political losses in Virginia and Kentucky stung Republicans hoping to shore up the South’s red firewall before next year’s re-election race.
Trump also retweeted the article, while withholding his usual commentary.
— AL.com (@aldotcom) November 6, 2019
Although the original article and headline expressly linked the “disruptive behavior” referenced in the letter to Trump, Yellowhammer News reported that it actually was a reference to a series of recent fights that had broken out in the student block seating.
Rothfarb issued a clarification that was appended to the top of the original article.
“Some have misinterpreted my comment regarding ‘disruptive behavior,’” he said.
“… By disruptive behavior, we are asking students to be respectful to all students and staff and avoid altercations,” he continued. “My email has nothing do with anyone’s First Amendment rights and I am sorry for any confusion. Please express yourself and especially your pride for the Tide.”
The student government press secretary, Jackson Fuentes, reiterated that the original posting was not intended to be a slight at Trump, nor at his opponents.
“Today’s report erroneously assigned a political context to a message meant only to remind students about heightened security and the consequences of altercations or other behaviors unbecoming of a University of Alabama student,” Fuentes said.
Saturday’s game marks the second high-stakes SEC competition for Trump while president. He was generally well-received two seasons ago when he attended the January 2018 national championship game in Atlanta between ‘Bama and the University of Georgia.
The Atlanta Journal–Constitution reported afterward that “Trump was greeted with a booming chorus of cheers mixed with some boos as he took the field Monday for the national anthem,” followed by another wave as he left the field.
By contrast, at a recent World Series contest between Major League Baseball‘s Washington Nationals and Houston Astros—held in Washington, DC—the deep-state swamp-denizens who could afford the high-priced tickets were reported to have loudly booed Trump’s appearance.