Twitter Is Going Nuts Over Melania Trump's Copycat Speech

Political plagiarism has a long tradition

By Walker Loetscher

 
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19 July 2016

Let's get one thing out of the way here:

Melania Trump's plagiarism of Michelle Obama's convention speech from 2008 yesterday is not something that needs to be qualified with a question mark or subjunctive verb.

Regardless of the Trump campaign's official stance on the subject ("Melania's team of writers took notes on her life's inspirations, and in some instances included fragments that included her own thinking"), this is a pretty cut-and-dry case of plagiarism.

When you include fragments of someone else's thinking in your own and don't attribute them, you are plagiarizing. It's that simple. Source: am journalist. Would get fired for doing same.

All of that said, the cries of indignation over the episode are a little overdone. Melania's gaffe comes on the heels of a long and proud recent history of less-than-original political grandstanding: everyone from Joe Biden to Rand Paul to Michelle's husband have delivered speeches that wouldn't pass a Turnitin test, as pointed out by the New Yorker.

Given that political circles don't seem to be overly concerned with the issue, is there any recourse for We the People?

Yes, it's called Twitter.

Below, you'll find some of the more colorful reactions the Twitterverse had to the presumptive FLOTUS' speech last night (for more, see the trending hashtag #FamousMelaniaTrumpQuotes). We wholeheartedly encourage you to do the same the next time it happens, regardless of which side of the aisle the offender sits on.

Image credit: ALEX WONG,PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP/Getty Images

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